Release Date: Nov 28, 2017
Series: The Bachelors of Arizona
Heat Level: Sensual
Publisher: Grand Central
The Bachelor Contract is a second chance story of Brant and Nikki Wellington. To say that the Bachelor Contract took me on an emotional rollercoaster is an understatement. I laughed, I cried (literally), I was frustrated by Brant and Nikki’s stubbornness, and I was writhing with anticipation waiting to find the answers to all my questions.
The story starts off with legally blind Nikki at a bachelor auction bidding on date with her ex-husband Brant at the behest of her new boss Nadine Titus. Nikki wins Brant with Nadine’s money but the date never happens. Brant refuses to meet with Nikki and keeps sending her the $25,000 she spent at the auction but Nikki just sends the check right back to him. Later Brant accepts a new job from Nadine which sends him to Azul, a resort that caters to the rich and famous, to get his take on how to make improvements. Once Brant is at Azul he discovers that his ex-wife Nikki is working there as a masseuse. Both Brant and Nikki keep telling themselves that they can remain professional, do their jobs, and move on but their powerful and passionate love, along with their painful past keeps pulling them towards each other. Can they forgive each other and themselves for not fighting for each other all those years ago?
I was so surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. This is a third person storytelling, which I don’t usually enjoy but after the first few pages it didn’t matter at all. I was so engrossed in the story and so emotionally invested into finding out the rest of the story that it felt like a first-person account. Van Dyken did a phenomenal job of making me feel what the characters were feeling, the attention to detail was superb. I absolutely loved that every chapter brought on new questions and once questions were answered there was a new question right around the corner. Each mystery of the story was solved with so much care and at the appropriate time.
While I loved the book there a couple things that didn’t jive well for me. The scene leading up to when Brant and Nikki finally meet at Azul was tense and comical (in a good way), but when it finally happened, when they finally realize they are in the same room it fell flat, it was anticlimactic. They hadn’t seen each other in 4 years and when they finally meet neither of them seem all that surprised each other is there. I would have like more of an emotional realization. Both of them should have seemed more surprised. The only other part I did not like was that the question of why Nadine Titus was so invested in Brant and Nikki reuniting was never really answered. This is the 3rd book in the series but since this can be read as a standalone then I would have expected to find out what the connection is.
One of the most impressive aspects of this novel are the sex scenes. There are a few over the course of the book, the first one was steamy, while the others that followed were more sensual and not very descriptive in the usual sense. Now, I usually do not like books with few sex scenes, short sex scenes, or mild scenes. I like them down right erotic. HOWEVER, the sex scenes in this book were written with so much emotion that I didn’t even care about the lack of eroticism.
I really enjoyed this book. The emotion, the flow, the humor, it all came together so well that I couldn’t put it down.