Series: The English Gent Romances #2
Release Date: May 19th, 2022
CW: mentions of infidelity, drug use and addiction, parental death
Zeke Brooksbank is in need of a wake-up call. One that shakes him out of the grump he’s permanently in and turns him into a reasonable human being.
I’m not staying at his country residence to tame the beast. I’m meant to be cataloguing his art collection, not fangirling over his own paintings, or becoming attached to his little daughter.
This is only my second Annie Dyer book and I really enjoyed Penalty Kiss. When I started this book, it felt like I entered the story at the halfway point. Only then did I realise that it’s the second book in the series, because we’re thrust into a wedding with millions of characters and there was a lot to process. I think that hindered my enjoyment, because I struggled a little to remember names and details, and of course all the connections. And I think that maybe if I’d read the previous book, it might have been less daunting.
Catrin and Zeke have a grump x sunshine and an enemies to lovers to benefits relationship, which is always fun. I’m not sure if their reasons for being ‘enemies’ was valid, but I enjoyed the enemies with benefits part of it, because that felt more fun and believable. I liked the constant pull they felt towards each other even though they knew it was all kinds of wrong to be even considering being attracted to each other. I also liked that while Zeke was a viscount and had all this money to his name, Catrin didn’t come from a ‘poor’ family. Her family was also pretty well established and wealthy, allowing for their relationship to function at a balanced level.
Theirs is also a very physical relationship. Given that they have a bit of a secret relationship with benefits, it’s only fair that they do it in literally every room of the grand home that Zeke lives in. However, on an emotional level, I didn’t really feel that connection. I am all for physically based relationships, so I had no issues with that, but I wish I felt more of their feelings for each other. Towards the end of the book, certainly all of that comes to head and hearing them talk about their feelings made me feel like okay, maybe it’s real. But it took me a good long time to really believe that.
Other things I liked—Catrin’s relationship with this large and extended family of hers. There’s tons of people and I know they’ve all got books that I should read to really get the feeling for these characters, but it was so expansive. I really enjoyed Zeke’s relationship with his daughter. Nora was such a wonderful kid and I liked that she felt so real through the story. I also respected his relationship with his ex and how smoothly all of that played out. I liked the relationship that Zeke forges with Catrin’s family slowly, but surely. Because that also felt so natural.
If you’re looking for an enemies with benefits, single dad, grump x sunshine romance set in England featuring a viscount with artistic flair, The Atelier Assignment is for you!
Thanks to Wildfire Marketing Solutions for the advance copy. I’m voluntarily leaving an honest review.