Friday, November 11, 2016

Review Tour: Romancing the Wrong Twin by Clare London (Exclusive Excerpt, Review + Giveaway)

Clare London - Romancing The Wrong Twin

Author: Clare London

Release Date: November 1 2016

Length: 59,000 words


How tangled can a romantic web get?

When gruff mountaineer Dominic Hartington-George seeks sponsorship for his latest expedition, his London PA insists on a more media-friendly profile—like dating celebrity supermodel Zeb Z.

Zeb can’t make the date, so he asks his identical twin, Aidan, to stand in for just one evening. Aidan, a struggling playwright, shuns the limelight to the extent people don’t even know Zeb has a sibling, but he reluctantly agrees.

When the deception has to continue beyond the first date, Aidan fights to keep up the pretense. Dominic likes his sassy, intelligent companion, and Aidan starts falling for the forthright explorer. But how long can Aidan’s conscience cope as confusion abounds? Will coming clean as “the other twin” destroy the trust they’ve built?

Exclusive Excerpt

“So, why don’t you tell me what you want to get out of this,” Zeb asked him. “I gather it’s funding for a new expedition? Is it the next step of your Hartington Hike project?”

“You know about that?” Dom couldn’t remember when he’d last been so startled.

“Of course I do. There was a documentary series when you launched it. Your father climbed some of the most challenging peaks in the world and published it all in his memoirs. Now you intend to follow his route and climb all the same mountains, but this time with a camera rather than a notebook.”

Dom just stared.

“What? You think I only watch reality shows?” Zeb was pink again. “I remember thinking what a lovely tribute it was, to say nothing of what a great show it’ll make. The scenery will be spectacular, and it’ll bring the challenge of the climbs to life far more vividly.”

“Good Lord,” Dom muttered. “You’re either a frustrated moviemaker or… are you a climber?”

“Hardly.” Zeb looked momentarily startled, but his follow-up smile was friendly. “Though I have done the Five Peaks challenge, just after I left university.”

Another hit between the eyes. Dom managed to bite back his incredulous “You climbed the Five Peaks?” followed by the equally incredulous “You went to university?” just in time. He was beginning to think Zeb was right, that he should venture out into the world more often. The only supermodels Dom remembered hearing about had been virtually snatched from the cradle and weren’t known for academic pursuits. He felt his gut roil at his narrow-minded, isolated view of people outside his circle.

God help him if the feelings weren’t the beginnings of shame.

“Well, you’re right. Again. Apparently I’ve worked through my pittance of an inheritance and now I need to raise enough for the final trip in the Hike schedule, an expedition up the Eiger. Tanya—my agent, PA, girl Friday, whatever—says a sponsorship deal is called for. I just turn up and do what I’m told in order to obtain it.”

“I doubt that,” Zeb said. “The bit about doing what you’re told, that is.”

Dom let out a gust of laughter. “Well, I won’t say I went calmly to the slaughter.”

“But she’s right too. You have a wonderful ambition that should get better exposure. Imagine the combined project of your father’s memoirs and your photos! That’ll be attractive to plenty of commercial ventures. It can be a win-win situation.”

“You sound like you know what you’re talking about,” Dom said a little slyly.

“So do you,” Zeb snapped back. “You don’t seem like a naive man to me. You must know you need to build financial relationships and play the media. It’s not viable nowadays to fund events personally. Who has the money for that, apart from the Richard Bransons of the world?”

“Who indeed?” Dom said wryly, but he didn’t feel as defensive as he usually felt when talking about his plans with accountants and agents. Zeb seemed to speak from the heart. He understood the nature of the Hartington Hike, while being brave enough to call Dom on his resistance to the workings of modern commerce. “Of course, in my father’s day it was all paid for by the family coffers.”

“That’s a bygone age now. You’re your own man, not your father.” Zeb’s eyes widened and his mouth stuck in a shocked O shape. “Oh God, I’m sorry. That went way too far.”

Dom was still assimilating it when the driver tapped on the screen and called, “We’re here.”

They’d pulled up at the carpeted area in the front of the London cinema. The spectators were standing behind ropes, a blur of expectant faces shining under the photographers’ lights. Everywhere around the entrance was packed tightly. Photographers leered at the car like poised birds of prey, and the loud, excited chatter seeped through the limo’s closed windows.

“Bugger me,” Dom said without thinking.

“Oh my God,” Zeb breathed. He, too, was staring out the window.

Dom looked across at him in surprise. If he didn’t know better, he would think Zeb was somewhere between horrified and scared. But the kid should be used to this kind of thing, shouldn’t he? Dom refused most of his social invitations by default, but surely a supermodel got invited everywhere?

Impulsively, Dom reached over and grabbed Zeb’s hand, interlocking their fingers. “Ready for showtime?” he asked firmly, trying to make his smile both determined and friendly—no mean feat.

Zeb blinked hard, then smiled back. His pressure on Dom’s fingers relaxed. “Yes. Thanks.”

It sounded a genuinely sweet response, despite models being jumped-up, self-obsessed media flakes—well, apparently. Dom wasn’t sure what was going on, but one thing he knew for sure, he’d be damned if he’d let the media scare him off. “Come on, then.” He popped the lock on the car door, pushed it open, and clambered out. Zeb’s hand was still clasped in his, which meant Dom almost hauled him out of the limo after him. But when he glanced back, Zeb was still smiling.

The paparazzi turned as one to face them, having just harried another celebrity couple all the way to the entrance. There was a brief moment of confusion while some people obviously tried to place Dom and failed—but no one had a problem with Zeb.

“Zeb! Zeb Z!”

“Will you be staying awake for this one, Zeb?”

“Who’s your partner? Is this a new romance?”

Dom paused and turned to smile at a photographer, but from the way the young woman winced, he reckoned he hadn’t managed to get his social face on properly.

Beside him, Zeb leaned forward into one of the long lenses. “You lot need to get a life,” he said. “And not mine!” A few of the reporters laughed. “Now let us pass, or I’ll miss out on the free popcorn.”

Dom watched as Zeb allowed a couple more photos. He wondered if anyone had heard the slight tremor in Zeb’s voice when he faced the reporters, or saw the tension across his shoulders as he posed. Maybe Dom was imagining it. Then Zeb glanced back at him, they nodded to each other, and together they made a smooth but speedy charge along the carpet and into the cinema.

Dom realized he’d been holding Zeb’s hand the whole of the way.

*Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by the author/publisher for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.*

Dominic needs help to get a sponsorship for his upcoming mountaineering expedition, and his agent suggests pairing him off with supermodel Zeb Z. Only problem? Zeb is otherwise engaged and he recruits his twin brother, Aidan, to fulfill the role.

Aidan is not as outgoing as his brother, so pretending both to be Zed and Dominic's date is not easy for him. The longer they spend together, the easier it is to fall for the gruff Dominic, and the attraction seems to be reciprocated. But how will Dominic react when he finds out Zeb is not really Zeb, but Aidan? 

I've always loved books featuring twins, perhaps some of it stems from having twin girls myself, or perhaps it's just that I find their bond fascinating. In any case, while I've read other books with twin women, I hadn't read any with twin guys, so that was a neat change. 

Aidan was really sweet and I loved his interaction with his brother. It was obvious they shared a very deep connection. Dominic was all growly at first, but I just adored how his gruff exterior just melted the longer he and Aidan were together. They had an amazing chemistry and it was a delight to see them falling for each other. 

The secondary characters really added depth to the story, providing some comedic relief in just the perfect places. 

All in all, I think this book is not only my favorite Clare London read, but my favorite in the Dreamspun Series so far, as well. It was thoroughly enjoyable, fun, a bit angsty, sweet and steamy, with some very nice twists that I didn't quite see coming. Highly recommendable!

Rating: 5 Stars!!!

Author Bio

Clare London took her pen name from the city where she lives, loves, and writes. A lone, brave female in a frenetic, testosterone-fuelled family home, she juggles her writing with her other day job as an accountant.

She’s written in many genres and across many settings, with award-winning novels and short stories published both online and in print. She says she likes variety in her writing while friends say she’s just fickle, but as long as both theories spawn good fiction, she’s happy. Most of her work features male/male romance and drama with a healthy serving of physical passion, as she enjoys both reading and writing about strong, sympathetic, and sexy characters. 

Clare currently has several novels sulking at that tricky chapter three stage and plenty of other projects in mind... she just has to find out where she left them in that frenetic, testosterone-fuelled family home. 

Clare loves to hear from readers, and you can contact her here:
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