My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Cinderella meets Beauty and the Beast in this modern day fairy tale. Charlotte Dixon has put her entire life on hold as she's been emotionally blackmailed into staying home and taking care of her stepmother's ailing mother. She's also forced to take care of the house and cook meals for her ungrateful step-mother and step-sisters to "contribute to the household" since she's unable to have a regular job and take care of her Gran at the same time.
She meets a sexy masked Zorro at the costume ball her grandmother manipulates her into attending and she shares a night of passion with him after the ball. Then it's back to her mundane life of cooking and cleaning for her family.
Until her grandmother arranges a job interview at Marlborough Media. Then she's confronted with her masked man who's the owner of the company and her potential new boss.
Ashley Marlborough is called "The Beast" by the media because of extensive burn scars he suffered when caught in the fire that killed his mother when he was a child. He's considered a player because he doesn't stay with one woman long, but in reality he doesn't want to be used for his money. He wants to be loved for himself.
Once he starts pursuing Charlotte, he realizes that she isn't interested in his money; she likes him for himself. But she's extremely skittish and highly values her independence since she's been unpaid maid labor for her family for years. And he really has his work cut out for him convincing Charlotte that he's truly interested in committing to her.
I really enjoyed this twist on the Cinderella story. Having the man have to work for the woman's commitment is one of my favorite tropes. And Charlotte made Ash work for it until the very end.
✳✳ Copy provided by the author/publisher for an honest review.
✳✳ Reviewed on I ♥ Bookie Nookie Reviews by Lisa S.