Of all the Marcelli sisters, the one who dreams of running the family's winery is Brenna -- and she's about to get her chance. But taking the helm at Marcelli Winery is tougher than she bargained for -- especially when she butts heads with her grandfather, whose Old World ways dictate that a male should inherit the business. In need of some fast capital in order to prove her grandfather wrong, Brenna turns to Nic Giovanni, her family's nemesis....Years ago, she ended her secret relationship with Nic, choosing loyalty to her family over the hot passion they shared. But now he's back in her life, he's loaned her a million dollars, and their feelings for each other are stronger than ever. Brenna must find out for herself: is Nic the love of her life? Or the schemer who could topple the Marcelli dynasty -- and break her heart?
This is the third book in Susan Mallery’s ‘Marcelli Sisters of Pleasure Road’ series. I wasn’t thrilled with the first book, ‘The Sparkling One’ and even less so with ‘The Sassy One’. But while reading those two duds, I kept hanging out for one characters’ story. Brenna.
Brenna is fraternal twin to Francesca and she’s been getting all the hard knocks from book #1. In ‘The Sparkling One’ Brenna is dumped by her husband of 10 years –thrown over for a younger woman to become a cliché at the age of 27.
I was most interested in reading Brenna’s story because Mallery created her love interest back in book #1. Mallery introduced rival wine-maker, Nic Giovanni, and revealed that he and Brenna had been sweethearts and planned to elope when they were teenagers. But Brenna was scared to be cut off from her family and so she took the easy route and married her (now) ex-husband instead of Nic.
Francesca recovered first. “Nic? Nic our neighbour? Nic Giovanni – the great-grandson of the hated Salvatore? The Romeo to our collective Juliet?”I really liked this instalment of the ‘Marcelli sisters’ series. This third book totally makes up for the sub-par plots and dull romances in book’s #1 and #2.
“Slept?” Katie asked. “As in sex?”
For one thing, Nic Giovanni is H-O-T! He rides a motorcycle, wears black and plays up to being Brenna’s forbidden lover. These two have instant chemistry. I didn’t even mind that a good deal of their chemistry comes from their past romance – there are no flashbacks, but both Brenna and Nic recount the love of their youth.
I especially liked Nic because he *really* lives up to his ‘bad boy’ label. While seducing Brenna he’s planning to buy her family’s winery behind her back. I really felt a sense of ‘will they or won’t they?’ with this high-stakes romance. Nic was risking so much by falling for Brenna while contriving to ruin her family legacy. There was a really believable struggle between the characters which meant I was 100% invested in the storyline and romance.
I really liked this book. I didn’t love it, but it definitely made up for Mallery’s first 2 less-than-impressive books in the ‘Marcelli Sisters’ series.