King of Hearts by L.H. Cosway

kingofhearts

Title: King of Hearts (Hearts #3)

Author: L.H. Cosway

Date of Publication: July 16, 2015

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Synopsis

Welcome to the City, London’s most prestigious square mile, where finance reigns and Oliver King is a rising prince.

I used to rule the world.

There might be wolves on Wall Street, but there were crocodiles in Canary Wharf. Some of us craved money. Some of us craved power.

I liked money, and power had its advantages, but what I really wanted was to excel, to surpass the men who came before me. I never cared much for love and romance until I met Alexis.

I could feel it the very moment she walked into the interview, with her outspoken charm and vivacious personality. She cast all the others in shadow, made me laugh when life held no humour. Our friendship should have remained professional, but it wasn’t long before the lines started to blur.

You know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men? Well, I never foresaw where my plans would lead, and only in my darkest hour did I finally see the light…

You can have all the money and prestige in the world and still be the poorest man alive. And love, well, I hate to use a tired old cliché, but love can be the thing that truly sets you free.

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Excerpt

I was lost deep in the Facebook vortex when the distinct clearing of a male throat caused me to jump and drop my phone in fright. Glancing up, I found King standing in the doorway, arms crossed and a curious look on his face. He was back early. Of course he’d come back early.

“Enjoying your lunch?” he said, raising an eyebrow.

What was that sound, I hear you ask? Why, it was my heart plopping right out onto the floor and crawling away in mortification.

“I, eh, uh,” I tried to think of an excuse but drew a complete and total blank. Finally I went with, “You have a couch in your bathroom.” Yep, that gem was all mine.

“I do. And you’re in here, why?”

I let out an embarrassed laugh and hung my head in shame. There really was no excuse for this. It was like, when you see a giraffe walking by, you’re more than likely at the zoo. This was me taking liberties plain as day. Wincing, I decided to go with honesty and face the consequences.

“I’m really sorry. I was looking around your office and saw that you had a couch in your bathroom and that your bathroom is swankier than any bathroom I’ve ever been in and I just couldn’t help myself.”

Oh God, somebody gag my verbal diarrhoea, please.

I stared at King. King stared at me. His expression was indecipherable until he shook his head and let out a gentle laugh. Then he surprised the shit out of me when he closed the door, stepped inside and dropped down beside me. He threw his arms up and rested his head in his hands, kicking his legs out.

“It is quite swanky in here,” he allowed.

A beat of silence elapsed before I had to ask, “Am I fired?”

King’s eyes slid to mine as he let out a long sigh. I thought he might be enjoying making me sweat before he finally answered, “Luckily for you, I’m in a decidedly good mood today, so no, you’re not fired. I’d appreciate it, though, if you let me know the next time you feel like eating lunch in my bathroom. I could have been in here taking a shower,” he grinned at me before putting on a face of mock horror. “Or God forbid, having a number two.”

He whispered the words ‘number two’ and I burst out laughing. I swear, it was the last thing I expected him to say. He was pretty funny when he wanted to be.

I swiped my fingers over my heart. “Okay, cross my heart, I’ll give you notice the next time. Number twos are not something I want to witness.”

He waggled his brow and leaned in a fraction closer, bumping my shoulder with his. “Ah, but you wouldn’t be adverse to a shower?”

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Christina’s Five Star Review

Oliver King was at the top of his game as an investment banker in London. He had wealth, power, and when Alexis showed up in his office to interview for the position as his executive assistant, he had found the love of his life. But when a monster from his past comes back and attempts to take away everything King held dear, he becomes a shell of himself, resigning himself to a life tied to a liquor bottle.

Alexis doesn’t have much in the way of marketable skills, possessing just a certificate in administration and a history as a barmaid. What she does have though is a keen wit and business instinct that King immediately recognizes as potential. He takes a chance on her, and as they begin to work together he becomes enamored with her, quickly taking the relationship to a more personal level.

The first half of the book explores King and Alexis’s lives before the “event” that changed them both. We see the humor in her that he is attracted to and the loyalty and vulnerability in him that she is drawn to. Their love story happens fast and hard and it all comes to a screeching halt in the blink of an eye. Fast-forward six years later to the second half and we meet with the couple once again, learning how to live with the fallout that separated them. We catch up with the self-destructive King that we met over the first two installments in the series and we meet the mysterious Alexis, the subject of the photo that he held close to his heart for so many years.

When they finally reunite, the heartbreak is anew; yet once they begin to find their way back to each other, the renewed hope is overpowering and emotional. This is one of those books that pulls at every heartstring and just when you think you’re gutted, the impossible happens and you’ve reached the denouement. Everything about this series, from the circus setting to the seeming intervention of fate, is enchanting. The characters, the storylines, everything…kismet.

Every time I finish one of Cosway’s books I’m left thinking, “OMG, she’s outdone herself!” Then she releases another and once again I’m blown away. King has been one of my favorite characters from the very start of the series as you could just tell that there was a story there, just dying to be told; little did I know that it would be as powerful and heartbreaking as it was.

While this is the third book in the series, it can be read as a standalone. As always I do strongly suggest reading the books in order as the relationships that Cosway crafts are so thoroughly entwined throughout each of the books. Jay, Matilda, Jack, and Lille all appear and prove an integral part of helping King find his happily ever after. Easily one of my favorites of 2015.

Christina

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About the Author

L.H. Cosway has a BA in English Literature and Greek and Roman Civilisation, and an MA in Postcolonial Literature. She lives in Dublin city. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books.

She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories.

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