Justin White may not look like an up and coming corporate superstar, but his new boss knows he has the smarts, grit, and determination to succeed. Now he just has to convince his company’s CFO, Eli Ovadia. Unfortunately, Justin can’t seem to keep his cool around the domineering Eli—and soon he finds himself taking their heat from the boardroom into the bedroom…
Still haunted by a tragic accident that left him with a wounded leg and broken heart, Eli has a need to be in control. But his desire for Justin makes him want to lose that control—and push them both far beyond their limits. But will his need to dominate Justin drive him away—or will Eli find a way to be the man he needs for both of them?
*** Copy provided via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. ***
First of all, I've got to admit this is the second time I read this story. First time I was a mess after reading, so I put it aside and decided to review it after a second read. It still made me cry, but that is just because Anna Zabo has a way with words and emotions that I just couldn't avoid it.
Justin escaped from LA and an abusive lover and moved to Pittsburgh to finish his studies, working as a barista in the meantime. He needs a different kind of job, though, one that pays more, so he can help his parents and disabled sister.
Sam and Eli are looking for a personal assistant for Sam's firm, where they are CEO and CFO respectively, with no luck, until edgy goth Justin, gives them his resume. He turns out to be just the person they needed, especially Eli, in more ways than just for work.
Justin is intelligent, brilliant even, he's also a submissive, very attracted to Eli, who is a Dom, but he's hung up on his prior relationship with Francis, who did quite a number on him. When he and Eli get together things are good for a while until they aren't.
I loved Eli, absolutely, totally loved him. He was such a broken man, having to live with the guilt of what happened to him when he was barely 16 years old. And for as much as I loved him, I hated Justin, although on the second read I hated him a bit less than on the first read. I understood why he did what he did, still, the way he treated Eli was inexcusable and I would've liked it if he had to work a bit more to earn Eli's forgiveness. By the end of the book, I liked Justin a whole lot more, though.
Eli and Justin were hot together, though, no two ways about that. They had great chemistry and when Justin wasn't transferring his feelings for Francis onto Eli, they worked well together both in and out of bed. And yes, it deals with BDSM and PTSD, but it's not just that, it's a story of love, of letting go of your fears, of the phantoms of your past and having to move on or you might lose what's really important to you.
I adored Sam and Michael, too, they were such great friends for them, especially for Eli.
This was such a great read, one that I probably will read again several times, because it made me feel so much! I was a blubbering mess the first time around, and the second, while not as much, I still cried and felt and wanted to cuddle Eli and make it all better. *squishes Eli* All in all, a fantastic, heartfelt, emotional, very hot book, that you will not regret picking up!