Ex-Billionaire Escort by Leigh James
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing
Publication Date: October 2015
Lowell: He was my bad-boy billionaire stepbrother… now he’s my disinherited, sexy escort? FML!
Kyle: She was my geeky, brace-faced stepsister… now she’s a hot Hollywood actress? Who’s also a client at the upscale escort agency where I work? Things might finally be looking up!
Lowell: I had a PR disaster on my hands. I needed a pretend boyfriend—so I called the escort service. But then stepbrother bad boy showed up. Now I’m all sorts of screwed. Or wishing I was.
Wait—I take that back! I take it back!
Kyle: My powerful father will do anything to keep me away from Lowell, including dangling my fortune in front of me. But I just might be more interested in what my sexy ex-stepsister has to offer… that is, if I can convince her to give it to me.
This is a standalone romantic comedy that puts the “fun” in dysfunctional family. You do not have to read the other books in The Escort Collection to enjoy this one, but you totally should!
*I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I honestly think that the main reason I signed up to review this book is because the title reminded me of a Harlequin/ Mills & Boon kind of story. Apart from that, the blurb also intrigued me, so I opened to the first page with pretty high expectations.
Lowell is an actress who is pretty much on her way to becoming a star. When her director and producers tell her she’s too fat, she goes out, gets drunk, and is caught on tape yelling at police officers and throwing up on them. Before the next morning, the video has gone viral, and Lo has to find a way to salvage her reputation and career. So she decides to hire someone who would pretend to be her boyfriend, and hopefully make the scandal go down.
Kyle is an escort, who also happens to be Lowell’s ex- step brother. He was a trust fund brat until his father cut him off, and he realised he had to work to survive. But he’s tired of his job, and is relieved when he receives a call informing him of an opportunity to work for a young actress.
The first thing I feel I should point out is that Kyle is not a billionaire: he’s the disowned son of a billionaire, and he doesn’t even have a proper job. That said, there are only a few things about this book that rubbed me the wrong way.
I know that Lowell’s scandalous behaviour was pretty… scandalous, but I don’t think it should have caused the fuss and uproar it did. I can make a list of celebrities in real life who have done worse things when sober, and as far I know, they are still very celebrated. I do like Lowell, even though she sometimes made my palms twitch because of some of the dumb things she did.
Kyle as a grown up is a sweet guy, as opposed to Kyle as a teenager. He and Lowell fit quite well as a couple, just that I didn’t feel much heart or chemistry between them. Somehow, their relationship just went on fast forward, and there seemed to be more “telling” than “showing”.
Generally, Ex Billionaire Escort went three ways for me: interesting in the beginning, just okay in the middle, and cliché at the end. It wasn’t so bad at the end of the day, and the cliché ending probably generated from the fact that towards the end, the story started to read like a Harlequin book. The pacing is okay, the romance is pretty sweet, and there is no shortage of variety when it comes to characterization. It’s a pretty good book, and maybe with a few minor nips and tucks, I would have liked it better.