REVIEW: Whatever You Like (The Brand Clan #1) by Maureen Smith

This was my first book by Maureen Smith many moons ago. What interested me mostly was that it was vaguely reminiscent of one of my fave movies, Pretty Woman. Lena Morrison is a grant writer by day and an in-demand escort by night.  When she’s set up on a “date” with billionaire businessman Roderick Brand it’s fireworks at first sight which leads to a hot interlude in the back of a limo. Roderick isn’t about to let Lena get away after just one explosive night so he makes her a proposal — spend 3 weeks with him as his “companion”.

If panty-melting hot is your cuppa, then you won’t be disappointed with WYL.

I had a wee bit of trouble believing that Lena is a shy woman who doesn’t date (outside her escort duties), would be mortally embarrassed at having had sex with her client, blushes like a schoolgirl, yet a week later she’s tying up said client and having her way with him the second time they hooked up!

Personally, I have no issue with a strong, confident heroine who owns her sexuality, no coyness or blushing required.

Despite any minor quibbles, overall, I thoroughly enjoyed WYL and would highly recommend it to others who are new to Maureen Smith or enjoy this genre in general.

I was smitten with Roderick and Lena and the writing of their love story. Maureen Smith was quickly added to my auto-buy list. With all that love flowing through me, this book’s cover sat on my spirit long after I had finished.  I just couldn’t just let it go. It was the first time, I’ve only done it twice more since, that I contacted an author about an issue I had with his/her book.

Unless it’s REALLY bad, I usually don’t bother getting my panties in a wad or point out my issues with book covers.  Rarely, if ever, do the people on the cover resemble the descriptions of the characters inside the book. I assume the publisher’s art department doesn’t actually read the book, but there must be some basic detail given to procure appropriate stock photos/art, right? Roderick is described as a mahogany-skinned African American man, a doppelgänger for Idris Elba. Allow me to refresh your memory as to what that description looks like…

Although we don’t see his head/face, the cover model is obviously not even close.

If from no other imprint, I’d expect Harlequin Kimani to embrace the many hues of African American people even when others may not do so. Thus, I found the cover art here particularly irksome when usually I’d let an inaccuracy go.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️½

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