Published by Soul Mate Publishing on October 16th 2013
Overachiever Mary-Kate Grant (who is indeed named after an Olsen Twin) has followed every rule to the letter to pursue her dream of working in TV programming. Ripping a page from the “hard work pays off” playbook, she takes an assistant level job at a Chicago sports network to break into the industry.
MK has no time or desire for a relationship right now—she is totally focused on her career and being independent, unlike the other women in her family.
But MK’s plans are run through the shredder when she finds herself working for William Cumberland, a British media mogul who made his fortune with Connectivity, a social media site. William blows into Chicago just like the winds off Lake Michigan and purchases the group of networks MK works for—and makes her his personal assistant in the process.
Suddenly MK finds her career plans in jeopardy. William makes her question everything she has ever thought and has the uncanny ability to see right through her. And for the first time in her life, MK finds herself not only questioning what she wants for her career but for her personal life as well…
So me and Romance novels used to be like this…
Then I went on a bender of certain New Adult titles with their own “special” brand on romance *shudder* and I was like this…
So when Connectivity popped in my inbox to review – part of me was like this…
Okay Book! Melt my black heart!
And then after about three pages I was like this…
And by the end I was totally like this…
In CONNECTIVITY we meet young, driven, career gal MK (Mary-Kate) who harbours dreams of working for a Home and Lifestyle TV network and knowing that hard work starts on the bottom rung of the ladder takes a job as a PA at a popular Chicago sports network under the same business umbrella – Collective Media Enterprises. Determined to make her break, she’s up to any challenge thrown at her – even when it involves the rickety old binding machine! One day however when her upbeat nature is bested by the dastardly beast of technology and she gets herself stuck whilst making copies she’s rescued by William Cumberland, the suave, British business mogul whose successful social media platform Connectivity has enabled him to takeover CME and by extension become MK’s new boss . Remember his name ladies, you’ll be swooning over him soon enough! Despite a less than stellar first impression than MK would have liked, she finds herself as William’s new personal assistant for six months with the promise of advancement to any area of the company including MK’s dream department Beautiful Homes Network. Finally MK’s hard work is paying off – if only she wasn’t drawn to the mysterious, debonair hunk who’s not only her boss but has great hair, and smile, and lithe physique…wait what were we talking about? Ah yes! Will MK focus on what she’s been telling herself is her one and only priority or will she listen to her heart and realise life isn’t just about career and it’s possible to mix business with pleasure…or is it?
It’s been a long time since I’ve read what I call a “straight” romance – that is one without emotional monsters lurking beneath its pages, that makes you read with one eye open and a grimace on your face (not good for keeping the wrinkles away) but simply a fun, sweet, well written, heart-warming story that makes you smile and more importantly makes you feel good (something I’m desperately in need of). I can’t tell you how glad I was to discover CONNECTIVITY was all of the above. It takes a lot to make me laugh, even more for me to laugh out loud but there wasn’t one chapter that went by in this book that I didn’t have a ridiculous grin and sore abs from giggling.
I adored MK, our hilarious MC, she’s clever, hot-headed, ambitious and clumsy all wrapped up in one adorable package. I immediately connected with her, not least because she can swear like a sailor (we have that in common) but we (namely me, MK and my mother) share a similar outlook in life. MK grew up in a household where women weren’t valued for anything more than marriage and motherhood, education was a means to an end – that end being a husband, house and kids. All worthy and admirable ambitions but MK wants to experience life before she settles down and escapes from small town America to the windy city of Chicago determined to make her mark on the world. As such romance is the last thing on her mind when William offers her the opportunity of a lifetime.
William is somewhat of an enigma at first for MK. She admires him greatly for his solid work ethic and ability to immerse himself in his career, always setting new and loftier goals and achieving them with the precision of a sharp shooter. Both find a connection in their mutual interest to succeed and go that extra mile but as they spend more time together, both MK and William realise that there is more to life than work. I loved how despite their different backgrounds MK and William totally “got” each other. It didn’t matter to MK that William was the head of a worldwide business empire; she saw past that to the man most people rarely took the time to get to know. It was important to me when reading how the relationship developed. It’s a tricky situation – work place romances come with a whole extra host of difficulties and I liked that the relationship didn’t affect how they behaved when on the clock. It was a worry of mine particularly as MK is so driven and pours her heart and soul into her work and achieving her goals with integrity and hard work and I was afraid that would be somewhat tainted by a relationship and I liked that William was just as careful to ensure no special treatment was given and their relationship remained pure.
Their encounters are filled with banter and catchphrases that can’t fail to raise a smile – I admit I went around saying everything was “most appropriate” for the last few days 🙂 There was an elegance to the relationship that I loved, so often in similar stories there is a seedy undertone but in CONNECTIVITY it is simply a sweet fun romance with a realistic edge. I loved how MK’s principles in both career and her personal life weren’t sacrificed to please a man and that William was equally as respectful of her wishes. At times I did grow frustrated when MK behaved a bit immature when her relationship was questioned with concern by her friends. I felt that she was too quick to dismiss their fears and was concerned that she would allow the overwhelming rush of emotion she felt to guide her down the wrong path. I could understand that the unfamiliar feelings of true first love can be overwhelming so was glad that William’s more conservative approach to situations balanced out MK’s hot temper.
CONNECTIVITY is a refreshing take on the modern romance with plenty of swoon-worthy moments and laugh out loud situations to keep even the most cynical of us (namely me) feeling light and buoyant throughout this wonderful story. I loved how real the characters were for me and in particular loved how MK’s love of blogging and design played a big part in the story. One of the things I loved most about William and Mary-Kate is that they reminded me of my absolute favourite book couple of all time – Luke Brandon and Becky Bloomwood from the Shopaholic series and since there hasn’t been a new book in quite some time there’s space in my heart up for grabs and William and the irrepressible MK may just have swiped that spot! 🙂
The chemistry between the two leads simmers along on a slow boil keeping the reader engaged and truly interested in the development of the romance rather than being handed a few cheap thrills and drama for effect and I personally loved it!