(Blog, Twitter, Goodreads)Series: The Artisans #1
Published by Month9Books, LLC. on May 12th 2015
They say death can be beautiful. But after the death of her mother, seventeen-year-old Raven Weathersby gives up her dream of becoming a fashion designer, barely surviving life in the South Carolina lowlands.
To make ends meet, Raven works after school as a seamstress creating stunning works of fashion that often rival the great names of the day.
Instead of making things easier on the high school senior, her stepdad's drinking leads to a run in with the highly reclusive heir to the Maddox family fortune, Gideon Maddox.
But Raven's stepdad's drying out and in no condition to attend the meeting with Maddox. So Raven volunteers to take his place and offers to repay the debt in order to keep the only father she's ever known out of jail, or worse.
Gideon Maddox agrees, outlining an outrageous demand: Raven must live in his home for a year while she designs for Maddox Industries' clothing line, signing over her creative rights.
Her handsome young captor is arrogant and infuriating to the nth degree, and Raven can't imagine working for him, let alone sharing the same space for more than five minutes.
But nothing is ever as it seems. Is Gideon Maddox the monster the world believes him to be? And can he stand to let the young seamstress see him as he really is?
I love Julie Reece’s work. Needless to say, One Summer With Autumn is one of my favorite books of all time. I love the enemies to lovers romance and wanted to read more of her writing. When Julie offered to send me another one of her books when I participated in the Swoon Romance Valentine’s Day extravaganza, I was beyond excited. I started reading The Artisans when I knew I had other things I needed to be reading and didn’t look back.
Raven Weathersby had been taking care of herself for quite a long time. Her stepfather was hopeless after her mother’s death, and he became her responsibility instead of the other way around. When he got in trouble with the town’s obscure millionaires, Raven offered to take his place and create a fashion line for Gideon Maddox’s father’s failing fashion empire—and so began the tale of their romance.
I loved Raven. She was feisty and self-assured, and she didn’t let anyone get the best of her. She also had enough curiosity to get her into a lot of trouble. The Maddox house had its own secrets hidden in the walls and paintings, and she wanted to get to the bottom of it. Her determination drove the novel: her need to finish the fashion line, to save Cole, and to save her stepfather from an inevitable fate.
Gideon…ah, Gideon. Yes, he was the quintessential mystery man, a dash of snark, and beastly personality. That’s right—this book had Beauty and the Beast vibes through and through, only Belle is a goth and the Beast is a handsome, blonde millionaire. So, you know, an improvement. Every word that came out of Gideon’s mouth was either an insult or a compliment, and it got so confusing that Raven wasn’t sure which was which sometimes. I loved him, albeit I had to fall for him. Sure, his looks made him a winner, but the Gideon that I loved was the one I got to know.
I loved everything about this book. I liked how Raven’s friends had their own romance going on in the background, and I also liked Dane and Maggie as people. Dane was her best friend for as long as she could remember, and Maggie was a dash of spunk that kept Raven on her toes. The trio went so well together, and I wanted to know if they were going to become a quartet and add Gideon to their circle.
If you haven’t read anything by Julie Reece, you’re missing out. Her writing is fantastic, and she creates stories and characters that make me fly through the pages for more. Be Gideon Maddox’s guest and discover the truth of the old plantation home in the swamps of South Carolina alongside Raven for a journey you’re not soon to forget.