Saturday, 4 November 2017

BLOG TOUR - REVIEW: THE PROPOSITION by ELIZABETH HAYLEY

 

 

The Proposition
Players #2
By Elizabeth Hayley
Releasing October 31st, 2017
Swerve



In The Proposition (Players #2) by Elizabeth Hayley, Ben Williamson is dreading going home for his brother's wedding, and the only way he can see things going well for him is to take a date. However, he never imagined he'd hire an escort, especially since if anyone found out, it could be used as ammo to disparage his good name. Still, hiring Ryan Cruz is the best decision he's ever made. However, what starts off as a simple proposition turns into a complicated mess he never saw coming. Will Ben be able to make things right with his family, so he and Ryan can have a chance at happy ever after; or will Ben ruin the only thing that's ever felt completely right in his life -- his relationship with Ryan?

This second story of Ms. Hayley's Players series was a fantastic addition for this series, because of the friendship Ben shares with his two friends -- Jace and Gabe; the growing relationship between the hero and heroine that had me reading quickly, wanting to know whether Ben will ever be able to make things right with his family; and the riveting dialogue that just keeps digging the heroine deeper when it comes to her lies. Will Ryan be able to keep up with the lies, so no one knows what she's hiding? However, it was from the moment the hero and heroine met that had me feeling sorry for the heroine, as accidents do happen.

As for the dialogue, it was intense due to the main characters back stories, especially that of the hero, as there is tension between him and his family due to the betrayal of his brother. Will Ben finally be able to forgive his brother, so he can finally move on with his life? However, the dialogue wasn't all intense. Indeed, there were some nice light-hearted moments between the hero and heroine and I loved every moment they conversed, as they get to know each other and do their best to fool everyone that their relationship is the real deal. Moreover, the heroine is resilient, courageous and I could understand why she was willing to lie to help Ben, because without the money he was willing to pay who knows where she would be in her life. Then again, after all that she's been through, she needs all the luck she can get. I also liked how the heroine wasn't afraid to say what was on her mind, even if she did manage to offend the hero or make Ben realize that she does like him more than the business transaction he starts out as.

While the hero, I felt sorry for him when it came to his family. Why couldn't his parents be proud of everything he's accomplished instead of criticizing him? However, in saying that, he has great friends that are supportive and I liked how the heroine helped him to combat everything he was feeling when it came to facing his family. I also liked how confident he was in propositioning Ryan with being his date for his brother's wedding, even though hiring an escort wasn't something he was looking to do until he actually did it.

Overall, Ms. Hayley has delivered another wonderful read for this series where the chemistry between this couple kept getting stronger with every interaction between them; the romance was hot; and the ending had me feeling sorry for the main characters. How could things go so awry? However, in saying that, I liked how things worked out for Ben and Ryan in the end, as nothing is more important to Ben than winning Ryan back. I loved Ben's words for the heroine in proving how much he loves her and that he listened to the advice given to him by his family and friends. Yet, what I liked most of all about the ending was what is going on with Ben's friend, Gabe. What will his future hold? I would recommend The Proposition by Elizabeth Hayley, if you enjoy the mistaken identity trope, the opposites attract trope, the fake relationship trope, or books by authors Kelly Jamieson, Julie Brannagh, Jami Davenport and Lia Riley.




Professional hockey player Ben Williamson doesn't quite know how he got himself into this situation; hiring someone to be his date to his brother's wedding is way out of character for him. But with family pressuring him to settle down, going stag just isn't an option. It would just be one more thing his polite, cultured family uses as ammo against him.

Ryan Cruz is having a bad day. Wait, make that a bad year. Broke, technically homeless, and living on a friend's couch, she's now also unemployed after her sharp tongue gets her fired from her job. So when a handsome stranger approaches her out of the blue with a proposition--he’ll pay her to be his date to his brother’s wedding for the weekend--accepting his offer is a no brainer. She needs the cash and figures it wouldn't be in the best interest of a professional athlete to murder her.

What starts as a simple business arrangement soon becomes more as these opposites attract and get caught up in the wedding magic. Will Ben and Ryan be able to turn their relationship into something more? Or is love based on a proposition too much of an obstacle to overcome?  

   
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“All right, all right,” Gabe said. “I’ll be serious and help you.”

“Thank you,” Ben said, happy he had the support of both his best friends.

The three had been practically inseparable since they’d met in college and roomed in the athletic dorm. All three had been lucky enough to play professionally, Gabe as a shortstop for Philadelphia and Jace as a quarterback for New Jersey. His friends’ close proximity to one another was the reason Ben chose to get an apartment in Philly and spend his time here in the off-season.

“I knew you were kidding when you mentioned the bet, but—”

“I wasn’t kidding. I have an idea that might work.”

“No,” Ben said sternly.

“Didn’t you learn anything from me, Torres?” Jace asked Gabe.

Now that the bet they’d made last summer was behind them, they could all joke about it. But a year ago, it would have been a different story. Jace had nearly lost Aly when the three friends had competed to see who could bring the hottest date to an awards ceremony. Jace had unexpectedly fallen hard for the beautiful doctor, but all of that had almost crumbled when she’d learned he’d initially asked her out because of a bet.

“Okay, I get why doing a bet again would be a bad idea, but I do think that finding some arm candy as a distraction is a solid plan. A buddy of mine brought some chick he met at an airport to his parents’ anniversary party, and everyone thought they’d been dating for months.”

Ben was skeptical. “Like a fake girlfriend? There’s no way that’ll work.”

“I don’t know, man,” Gabe said. “It might. The secret to a good lie is you gotta believe it yourself.”

“You’re so wise,” Ben said flatly.

“I’m serious,” said Gabe. “The chick I was telling you about ended up getting my buddy’s grandmother’s crab cake recipe, and that shit’s for family only.”

“Just to make sure I’m understanding you right, I should believe you because of a crab cake recipe?”

Jace raised his eyebrows at Ben and Gabe. “It’s actually not a bad idea.”

Ben rolled his eyes. “Not you too.”

“You got any better ideas?” Jace asked. When Ben was silent, Jace continued. “I didn’t think so. There’s a decent chance this could work. We just need to figure out who to get to pretend to be your girlfriend. You’re gonna be up there for a few days.”

Ben rubbed a hand over his forehead in frustration. “I don’t know. Fuck. No one’ll want to spend that much time with my family. A few hours with them is more than enough.”

“She doesn’t have to want to spend time with them,” Gabe said, a look in his eyes that told Ben he was up to something Ben was probably going to want no part of.

“Should I even ask what you’re talking about?” Ben said.

“Probably,” Gabe said. “Because I have the answer to your problem.”

Ben looked at him expectantly, but when he realized that wasn’t enough, he said, “Fine, you’re really gonna make me ask, aren’t you? Why doesn’t it matter if she doesn’t want to be there?”

A smile spread across Gabe’s face. “Because you’re gonna pay her,” he said simply.

“Like a prostitute?” Ben replied.

“Not a prostitute,” Gabe said. “An escort.”


   




Elizabeth Hayley is actually "Elizabeth" and "Hayley," two friends who love reading romance novels to obsessive levels. This mutual love prompted them to put their English degrees to good use by penning their own. The product is Pieces of Perfect, their debut novel. They learned a ton about one another through the process, like how they clearly share a brain and have a persistent need to text each other constantly (much to their husbands' chagrin). They live with their husbands and kids in a Philadelphia suburb. Thankfully, their children are still too young to read. Elizabeth Hayley's writing motto is best captured by the words of Patrick Dennis: "I always start with a clean piece of paper and a dirty mind."

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