by Melanie Moreland
So…. I have somewhat mixed feelings about this.
Let me start with the things I liked.
Firstly, I’m a sucker for a good “enemies to lovers” story and the storyline of The Contract was enjoyable. Richard is quite the jerkface and to get his dream job he offers his assistant Katharine a whole lot of money to… marry him. He can’t stand her, she can’t stand him. But I think we all know how it ends 😉
The story is mainly about Richard and while we have both his and Katherine’s point of view, most chapters are his. Initially, he really, really isn’t likable at all. But over the course of the book he goes through logical changes and… well… in the end, he turns out to be quite the awesome guy! John Lane does a great Richard. He can pull off the extreme arrogance of the earlier chapters but also manages to sound warm and concerned later on. His female voices and intonations work very well, too. I think the point of the story is “you get infatuated with someone when you love the person you become when you’re with them”.
And that brings me to the points I liked less. Mainly, Katharine. She’s a very two-dimensional character and basically just the back-drop for Richard to develop and become a more feeling person. And while we find out tons of “good reasons” why Katharine acts the way she does, in my opinion, she is too much of a self-sacrificial stick-in-the-mud. Tatiana Sokolov does a very fitting, nice narration of Katharine’s chapters though.
Now, there’s one more big thing. It’s a pet peeve of mine. I call it “fucking the virgin without foreplay”. I believe, if you decide to make your heroine a virgin, you should give her the kind of first time you would have wanted for yourself or your daughter. For me, having your breasts fondled once before he rams it in, to the hilt, is just not it. I don’t find it realistic and I always think “what if a virgin reads this book and thinks that’s all she can expect?” Where are the weeks of feeling her up, getting to know her body, letting her get to know her partner’s? Not every romance novel needs an explicit sex scene. And for me, this book would have been better, had Melanie Moreland been more vague about the bedroom things.
However, my bottom line is, that I did overall enjoy this book and do recommend it because I liked Richard so much.
1 out of 5 stick-in-the-mud stars
The sex scenes just weren’t very good, sorry :-/
Audiobook > Book
It’s not my favourite book but John Lane and Tatiana Sokolov did a wonderful narration of this!
Pick it up here:
This audiobook is in the Audible Romance package