When River set up a fundraiser to kick start her nail polish business, she never expected someone to pay five thousand dollars just to have dinner with her. But when she meets her mysterious benefactor, he turns out to be billionaire Kane Winters—the one man from her past who she never wanted to see again. Kane is determined to right the wrong that happened to River in college—because of him. She’s been an obsession he can’t escape…and Kane wants River more than he’s ever wanted anything. So he offers her a deal she can’t refuse: marry him and her business will be success. But River’s knight in shining armor isn’t looking for a platonic business deal. He wants their marriage to be real…in every way.
Source: Netgalley and Purchase
My Rating: 4/5 stars
River has no intention of spending the rest of her life working for someone else. If all goes well, her kick starter campaign will be successful and she’ll be able to launch her own nail polish line and quit her completely unsatisfying job. River has high hopes for her future right up to the moment she finds out precisely who it is that funded her entire campaign.
Kane Winters has spent years trying to replace the one who got away. He has a ridiculous amount of money, a successful company, and a best friend who has been by his side since undergrad. What he doesn’t have is River, the one woman he has spent years comparing all other women to and the one woman he humiliated and hurt beyond all reason. Yeah, Kane knows he was a total and complete as$ho!e and he also knows that if he has any hope of bringing River back into his life, he is going to have to employ extreme measures. Step one, fund her entire kick starter campaign. Step two, contractually obligate her to marry him. Nothing can go wrong here . . .
River never dreamt her wedding day would be so underwhelming and overwhelming all at once. On the underwhelming side, there are only three people in attendance and that number includes she and her husband. On the overwhelming side, River now has a fully funded business, an opportunity to introduce her nail polish line at an exclusive and high-end location, and she’s marrying a man she swore she would never engage with again, ever. Oh, this all happened in just a matter of days rather than weeks, months, or years. So, yeah, overwhelming wins.
Other than in the bedroom, River and Kane’s marriage is a train wreck waiting to happen. The sex is off the charts but that is the only area where each has any knowledge of the other. Kane expects River to meld right into his life and make whatever changes necessary to become the perfect wife of a wealthy businessman with numerous high society connections. Though River chaffs at some of the changes, she doesn’t want to be miserable so she is making a concerted effort to make her marriage work. The changes are made moderately easier by the presence of Kane’s best friend and business partner, Will.
Will has been friends with Kane since undergrad and truly wants nothing more than his friend to be happy. Though Will isn’t entirely comfortable with Kane’s trapping of River, he genuinely likes her and is willing to dive right in and help make her comfortable. Will is kind, generous, sexy as can be, and totally understanding of River’s awkward situation. When Kane travels for work – and he does, frequently – Will checks in on River, helps her with her nail polish line, and just hangs out to keep her company. Their friendship quickly blossoms, an attraction develops, and before anyone can say “BOO!” they’re found out by Kane and all hell breaks loose. To be completely fair, Kane has a few secrets of his own and when those bad boys come to light absolutely everything is threatened.
The Bottom Line: Nailed certainly isn’t a typical Opal Carew read but it is still enjoyable if you can get past and/or simply accept the ridiculous nature of a couple of things. One: the whole undergraduate event that set River and Kane at odds with one another and; two: the whole I’m going to contractually obligate you to marry me. These are both utterly ridiculous elements that will most certainly turn away many readers. While I certainly scoffed at these events, they weren’t deal breakers for me and I hung in there to the very end. Will is the highlight of this read and he is the primary reason I continued reading and eventually conceded to really liking Nailed. Though Will does make some mistakes, he’s a generally likeable character who serves as a peacemaker even when he’s the cause of some of the drama. Bringing Will into the relationship certainly ups the sexy and I truly wish he would have been brought into the bedroom far sooner. There are some good naughty bits in this read but not quite as naughty or as frequent as I expected from Opal Carew. In the end, even with the outlandish nature of the story and the subdued naughty bits, I still liked what I got. If you’re looking for a naughty little romp that’s light on believability but high on entertainment value then Nailed may just be right for you.