Title: Beautiful Bastard
Author: Christina Lauren
Publication Date: February 12, 2013
Summary (from Goodreads): An ambitious intern.
A perfectionist executive.
And a whole lot of name calling.
Whip-smart, hardworking, and on her way to an MBA, Chloe Mills has only one problem: her boss, Bennett Ryan. He's exacting, blunt, inconsiderate—and completely irresistible. A Beautiful Bastard.
Bennett has returned to Chicago from France to take a vital role in his family's massive media business. He never expected that the assistant who'd been helping him from abroad was the gorgeous, innocently provocative—completely infuriating—creature he now has to see every day. Despite the rumors, he's never been one for a workplace hookup. But Chloe's so tempting he's willing to bend the rules—or outright smash them—if it means he can have her. All over the office.
As their appetites for one another increase to a breaking point, Bennett and Chloe must decide exactly what they're willing to lose in order to win each other.
You know what I liked about this book? It owned what it was right up front: fan fiction. Right there in the first few pages among the praise for Beautiful Bastard was a section praising its original version as The Office. There was no skirting around the issue where these words had first been. There was no pretending like it wasn’t a used copy, a story first built on someone else’s characters. Yes, most FF turned OF is obvious and if you don’t know where it originally started someone else does and you’ll soon be filled in. But, in my opinion, once an author decides to publish their fan fiction it’s as if most of them want you to forget where it originally came from. That’s not the case. Whether it’s the most amazing piece of work anyone can ever read it still started as FF, and it seems like (some) authors don’t want to be reminded of that.
These authors? They owned that by putting it right there in their book. Of course everyone and their grandmother knew about this story in the FF world so there really would have been no way to hide, but still. Because of that simple fact they have my respect. Maybe they were made to, who knows. But I can count on one hand the number of FF turns OF that I have read that have ever acknowledged it the way this book did.
That being said…the book was just okay for me. It was the same story I’ve read hundreds of other times. There was nothing special about it. There was nothing to make it stand out as a must read for me. Sure there were some funny parts, one or two touching moments, but overall it was the same assistant/boss plot that has been used over and over again.
I think the thing that bugged me the most was the sex. Yes, fine it was hot—at the start. But then it got boring. It felt like the sex scenes were thrown in there just for the sake of being able to write sex scenes. I’m all for a hot book filled with sex—when said sex is actually part of the plot and not just there for the sake of horny readers. I need it to mean something, to be a part of the story. I don’t need to read about just to the authors can write their own version of 101 Places/Ways To Get It On. Panty ripping? Hot. Panty ripping every single time? Boring and predictable and no one wants that in a book—or their sex life.
It also kind of got on my nerves how they always referred to each other as Miss/Mr—especially in their own thoughts! Yes, he’s your boss. But she’s also your assistant that you’ve been secretly jerking off to for a year. You’d think every once in a while first names would slip in there somewhere.
I do think these two authors are a great writing team, however. The book was well written and you can tell each brought something of their own to the table. I would be interested in reading something truly original from them in the future.