I wish it was steamier!
I read this as part of the Noble Savages Anthology. It is my first book from this author and it was good. I give it 3.5 stars out of 5. This is the story of Tommy Heenan and Michelle McLean whose marriage was arranged by their parents when they were eight years old. I didn’t like this story quite as much as the others. I think it was because Michelle was the bully. She was also very spoiled and selfish and quite a huge brat, which is a word I rarely use but true in this case.
Of course she has reasons to hate her situation, I mean technically her father sold her future in a business deal. They are now rich and she has saved up money to run away and get set up somewhere until she can get a job. However, her plans fail, she is found out and Tommy starts to keep a very close eye on her. Tommy drives her to school and back and he keeps her car from her.
And then things kicked off when we were sixteen. That’s the legal marriage age in Scotland, with parental consent, and of course parental consent is the one thing we have in fucking abundance.
Tommy was determined I should leave school, marry him, and start learning my place as his wife. It’s all the rage in his community apparently, even though his family aren’t your typical Gypsies. They live in a house, for starters.
But whatever, I refused, and thankfully my dad backed me up for once in his life. We’d wait until we were both eighteen. I found this out via Tommy, when he pushed me up against a wall in the gym changing rooms and whispered in my ear: “This is the one crumb of mercy you will ever get from me, darlin, so you enjoy it while it lasts.”
Michelle hates Tommy, she has ever since that engagement party their parents had for them at eight years old. Though Tommy feels the same way about her, he knows that what their parents did was in the best interest of both their fathers companies and the reason for the arranged marriage is so both kids can inherit the two businesses and run them. Tommy wasn’t always rich, so he knows what it is like to go without and what this opportunity is for them.
Michelle can only see that she is losing her freedom and she crosses Tommy at every turn when he tries to tell her what to do. Though it is her own fault for getting caught doing a runner. Though Tommy does get back at her a few times, she brings it all the more and even manipulates his emotions. I just didn’t like her at all through most of the book.
Being free isn’t ridiculous; it’s her idea of being free that is. Like working long hours in a low-paid job and struggling to pay bills and having no friends is aspirational, just because it means she’s “free”. That’s not being free to me.You have to find your own ways of feeling like that, in the life you’ve been given.
Michelle does start to get better when she begins to feel an attraction for Tommy. She gets confused as to what she really wants. One last thing about this book that was not as good as the others was the supporting characters. Both main characters had friends and family, but we really didn’t learn anything about them or hear more than a few words from them. Though the book was not quite as good as the first three, it was still worth reading. Esme Devlin wrote a good story that held my interest and I really enjoyed how it all wrapped up. Though I’m only giving this a heat rating of 2 flames 🔥🔥.