Baiting the Boss
By Dorine Linnen
Feb 10, 2014 - 8:00:00 AM

Grace Owen is used to doing Lachlan Macintyre's laundry list of work that no one else wants to do.  She has been his person in charge of 'special projects' since she graduated from college, always hoping to have her talents recognized with a management promotion. 
Not a world traveler, she has made Sydney, Australia her home, with dreams of someday owning an apartment in a high-rise there.  When Lachlan asks her to find his wandering grandson, who quit the family business three years ago, Grace thinks of it as her one last chance to prove her worthiness for that promotion.

After traveling for a couple years, Jack Macintyre spends a year on a small Pacific island between Australia and Hawaii.  He enjoys the people, who have a laid-back lifestyle, and has been helping them to rebuild after a storm damaged many of their buildings.  Always assumed to become the future CEO of his family's business, he sold off his shares and walked away after the last argument with his grandfather, when he expected Jack to work through the grief of his wife's death.  Jack appreciated his grandfather for raising him after his parents died, but Lachlan's stringent work ethics have caused Jack to rethink what's really important.

Grace has always been somewhat in love with Jack, having admired him when they met after she graduated from college.  But they're from completely different worlds, with Jack still missing his late wife, and Grace being too much of a professional to risk her career with an interoffice romance.  Out of respect for Jack's grandfather, who just turned eighty-years-old, Grace feels it's important to reunite this family before it's too late.  Can she accomplish her goal without falling more in love with Jack in the process?

Beginning on a tropical island and continuing in Sydney, Australia, BAITING THE BOSS is a sweet, contemporary romance that focuses on the relationships between the characters as its plot.  Grace and Jack's passion for one another is moderately sensual, but the overall feel of the romance is sweet.  The tropical island comes alive more so than Australia as the final setting for the novel, so I didn't get as much flavor from that location as I wished for.  There were some excellent heart-rending moments toward the end of the story that were the best part of the book for me, resulting in a satisfying happy-ever-after. Those who love a relationship-driven contemporary romance should enjoy Coleen Kwan's style.

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