I have read quite a few books at this point from Diane Alberts/Jen McLaughlin, so when I saw she was doing a series based on fairytales I was really excited. I really love modern fairytales and I couldn't wait to see what she would bring to the table with Beauty and the Boss. While this one was okay, I did have some problems with the story.
Benjamin Gale III (as he is referred to multiple times here, in case the reader might forget) doesn't believe in love. He has a lot to prove when it comes to his family's business, and he has no time for anything else but work. Maggie Donovan has had her share of back luck with men, and at this point she isn't looking for love ever. But the attraction between her and her boss Benjamin (also known as The Beast around the office) comes to a head one night while they are working late, despite the fact that office relationships are forbidden. So when Maggie claims to be his fiance when they are confronted with his mother and a difficult situation, Maggie and Benjamin agree to go along with the ruse to benefit them both. But as they spend more time together, the lines between real and fake begin to blur. When Benjamin is given the ultimatum to give her up or lose everything, will he choose the life he has known and been expected to live, or the chance at love and a future with Maggie?
While Maggie and Benjamin (I refuse to call him Benji like Maggie did) were likable enough characters, I felt like they were so cliched and too cookie-cutter to really stand out here. Benjamin was your typical workaholic rich alpha, grumpy and unapproachable to all but Maggie. Maggie was your cute and sweet, yet terribly naive small town farm girl transported to the big city. They did have chemistry and were sexy together, but I honestly just didn't connect to them at all. They were just your run of the mill characters and I didn't feel invested in their story or relationship.
I also felt like the big conflict here was just as cliched and over the top as Benjamin and Maggie's characters. Benjamin's villain of a mother was hell bent on destroying everything around her and she was just as ridiculous and over the top as you would expect for a classic evil mother to be in a fairytale. While I do love fairytales re-imagined and given a modern twist, this Beauty and the Beast meets Cinderella story just missed the mark for me. It fell flat and I found myself skimming at times to get to the end and see how everything turned out. This one felt like it had all been done before, with nothing new or exciting brought to the table. While it was a quick light read, it wasn't overly memorable. If you are looking for something with some sweet and sexy moments that you can read in a few hours, you might give this one a shot. But if you are looking for something new or different, you might want to skip this one.
**ARC Provided by Publisher**