And the terror she and her parents went through 10 years ago with the men who held them up for days
and killed her father for the millions he received for selling their hotel.The hotel that 34y.o. Hero's family bought.
Adding Hero's cruel rejection of their blossoming romance at that time resulted in her purposeful plans of revenge towards him.
So Hero doesn't understand why she suddenly quit her job as his assistant and left him without answers, when they were just rekindling their romance.
This time, however, he's not letting her get away and he hunts her down for the truth.
I read this book not knowing that this was the 2nd book in series. Thinking it was a stand-alone book, I thought it was suspensefully written with intense emotional moments and a fast pace. The focus was on heroine's decision to change the way her life has been going and coming clean with Hero. I didn't know what precipitated the change and why she recently left Hero. I also had no clue what her romance with him was like 10 years ago and just recently. All I knew was that she was in love with him and felt bad for blaming him for something and trying to bring him down as as result. She did eventually tell him the truth and things went well with them after that. I don't know what her character was like before this change nor what Hero's character was like. All we really got was the conflict she felt about the truth about Hero she now knew and her determination to be different from now on. With Hero, we got a sense that he was determined to not let her go and has shown that he's continued to care for her the past 10 years. It's a short book (66 pages) and I thought another 5 to 10 pages giving us more details of their past romance and the current one would've given me enough knowledge to understand and connect with them more. Without it, I felt shortchanged.
Knowing now that there was a book 1(The Virgin: Revenge), the missing details about their first and current romance made some sense. However, I still stand by my suggestion that adding about 5 additional pages giving us some important info of their romance and their subsequent problems would've made it a stronger and more sufficient read. Giving us more details of the emotional condition of their past romance would've made Hero's confession of why he cruelly rejected more impacting.
---------------SPOILERS: Don't read below if you don't want to know the book's details-----------
Hero confessed that the reasons why he rejected heroine were because:
1. she was still 17 to his 24 and she was still too young legally and emotionally to have sex with him.
2. he was still a virgin himself and he had some conflicting issues about his sexuality due to the sexual manipulation of another woman and his heavy porn use
3. he was about to buy out her father's hotel and he couldn't tell her yet. Most of all, he didn't want her to think that his romantic involvement with her was due to his using her to further his business transaction.
It would've made heroine's misunderstanding of his rejection more poignant because it pointed to the wasted years and emotion from his decision to not tell her the truth then so it could've allowed them the chance to find a solution together. It would've also have brought some relief, knowing that Hero's reasons for cruelly rejecting her was borne out of caring and protection and not meanness. Without the added details or reading book 1, I felt some angst and their deep caring but I didn't fully understand why.
I moderately recommend this book.