Bitchin' Blog Posts
Title: Zoe and the Tormented Tycoon
Author: Kate Hewitt
Publication Info: Harlequin 2010
Genre: Contemporary Romance
“Yes, No, Maybe” wrote this review for the RITA® Reader Challenge, and says she had a hard time writing it because the book was so special to her.
Plot Summary: Everyone’s talking about Zoe Balfour—the illegitimate heiress! She flies to New York to discover more about her biological family and goes a little wild, shocking even herself by spending one night with a gorgeous stranger.
The gradual loss of his sight has caused Manhattan mogul Max Monroe to close himself off from the world—a wife and child are most certainly not on his agenda! How will Zoe, once just a spoiled socialite and now unexpectedly pregnant, unlock the dark heart of a man who may never see his own child?
And now, “Yes, No, Maybe’s” reviews, with spoilers blanked so highlight to read, k? K.
I took a week before writing this review. Why? Because I’ve read enough Harlequin Presents in recent years to be selective and keep my expectations low, only this story wasn’t the Kleenex variety. You know…flimsy, single ply, easy to blow through. My problem was how to articulate in 250 words or less why this book was special.
First and foremost this book doesn’t follow the classic Harlequin Presents script. Monroe is not your typical HP alph-ass hero.
He’s scared, angry and defensive. Party-girl Zoe Balfour is not feisty nor a secret virgin. She comes across as a spoilt socialite, weak, even unlikable.
I don’t think we were supposed to like her initially. How else could I as a reader forgive Max his brutal treatment and subsequent desertion of a pregnant Zoe? Whether just or not he sees her as the reader does.
Hewitt did her job well. Subtly played is Zoe’s quiet desperation. It shows when Max’s shell cracks a little. Zoe folds in on herself, plays to type, unable to relieve Max of his secrets and pain while her own sense of security is tested. She questions how Oscar Balfour could say “You’re stronger than you think”.
But she is.
It’s tenuous at first look. However, [Zoe] doesn’t retreat from society’s snubbing, or in telling Max she’s pregnant, and while facing her cold, sperm-reckless bio-father. Max’s rejection is heartrending yet she returns home and waits, quietly growing more resilient.
Max has serious issues. Fortunately for him, love’s sisterly emotion is hope. [And] Max’s Achilles’ heel is hope. Dare he hope for a full life, conceivably with Zoe and their child?
His journey to England is a metaphor of their future. It will be tough but you know they’ll make it for the reason that Max has found the courage and Zoe is strong enough to see them through.
It’s a beautiful story.