This is the first of a two part story by LG. A concept she introduced last year with `The Pregnancy Shock' and `A Stormy Greek Marriage.' This is book is very well written with no cliff hanger and can be read as a standalone.
Sander Volakis is the second son of the Greek shipping magnate Petros Volakis. To his parents he was no match to their beloved first son Titos. Sander had forged his own way from very early in life having not had the same affection bestowed on him by his parents. He made his first million at a very tender age, and never relied on the family fortune. He valued his independence and his freedom. Following the tragic accident that claimed his beloved brother he was suddenly the heir to the Volakis shipping and his father tried to induce him to join the family business without much success. Though his brother was dead his relationship with his parents did not improve as they saw him as a reminder of what they had lost. With a life time of rejection hewn into his bones from a tender age, any wonder that Sander was a loner with a dark passionate wild streak and no intention of ever getting married despite his father urging him to do so. When his father badgered him into accepting a weekend party invitation to a party being given by Eleni Ziakis?( his brother's ex fiancé, who was the driver in the accident that killed Tito) He accepted with utmost reluctance as a favour to his father knowing Eleni's reason for the invite. He had no interest in Eleni and condemned himself to a boring weekend until he spied Tally Spencer, his gloomy weekend suddenly became interesting and Sander's only thought was how to seduce her.
Tally Spencer grew up without a father, her father another Greek millionaire broke off his engagement to her mother, Crystal when she got pregnant with Tally, and married another woman. Her father would not acknowledge her publicly as his daughter though he paid her school fees. Her mother was no role model and has flitted from one relationship to another. Despite loving her mother very much, Tally was determined not to be like her and as result avoided relationships. At age 20 she was quite mature and wise beyond her years. When her father rang to ask her to accompany his daughter Cosima to a weekend party under the guise of letting them get to know each other better, Tally was not fooled, and knew her father wanted her to police Cosima. She nonetheless accepted. Her humiliation became complete when Cosima suggested that their relationship must not be divulged rather Tally will be presented to her friends as her PA. Tally is a beautiful person, down to earth, unassuming, naive and a final year student in art and design college In London, with plans to set up her own interior design business. When she accidentally bumped into Sander Volakis, she was pole axed by the attraction between them, something she decided to ignore despite pressure from Sander. Following an unpleasant encounter which led to her early departure from the party, Sander made a concerted effort to court and chase her in the weeks that followed. Tally eventually yielded and their affair began in earnest. Tally soon dumped Sander, only to find out that she was pregnant. Sander was unrepentant and wanted nothing more to do with Tally, after the way she dumped him, so the news that she was pregnant was greeted with trepidation and utter rejection. He believed she deliberately set out to trap him, he would have his lawyers draw up a legal document for child support but does not want any involvement. However he soon turned around to propose marriage. Why the sudden change of heart, is it because someone is holding a blackmail gun over his head? How long can a marriage contracted on that basis last? Will Tally ever find out? Will Sander rescue the family business and go back to work for his father or will he allow the blackmailer to ruin generations of Volakis sweat and grit? Who can be blackmailing Sander and what is their motivation?
This was quite an interesting read, one I read in one sitting. The two characters share a lot in common. The inner loneliness borne of family rejection, the independent streak and the loner status. However while Sander was arrogant, cynical, dark and rich; Tally was optimistic, forgiving, open, naive, honest and not so well off. Tally was no shrinking violet and stood up for herself with dignity and poise whenever it mattered. Although their marriage was initially rocky, they worked their way to a harmonious loving relationship through open dialogue and honest communication. The book ended on a beautiful note.
There was no cliff hanger but the prologue suggested that something went wrong down the line. I am eagerly awaiting the second book. It was a well written book that showed the problems and consequences that can arise in casual no-strings attached relationships.It also portrayed beautifully the fact that we constantly make decisions and the consequences of that decision may not always be to our liking but we have to accept it and deal with it.