My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher for an honest review at Seductive Musings.
This review may contain spoilers for previous books in the Because You Are Mine series. You can read this book as a standalone, but I believe you’ll enjoy it more if you’ve read the other books first.
When I found out there would be one more book in Beth Kery’s Because You Are Mine series, I wondered if it could live up to the others, especially now that Ian and Francesca had finally gotten their HEA. But I should have known Ian Noble’s brother Kam would have no problem bringing the same intensity to his romance with Ian’s coolly efficient right-hand woman that I’d come to expect in this series, and not just because he’s practically his half-brother’s double. For despite all the similarities between Ian Noble and Kam Reardon, Kam is most definitely his own man, and that’s what makes him irresistible to Lin and to this reader as SINCE I SAW YOU brings this wonderful series to a satisfying close.
My impression of Kam in the previous book, BECAUSE WE BELONG, was that of a man who didn’t give a damn about what anyone thought of him. After all, he already shared a common blood bond with his two half-brothers, Ian and Lucien, thanks to the criminally insane father. But unlike Ian and Lucien, Kam had been in direct contact for most of his life with the evil man who’d spawned the three half-brothers and many more like them. Only by appearing to reject his own beloved mother could Kam protect her from that man’s retribution, but in the process, Kam began to doubt his own ability to love and protect anyone else in his life. There had been another woman he’d thought loved him for himself, but she’d ultimately let him down. So when Kam first spots Lin Soong walking toward him for a prearranged business meeting in SINCE I SAW YOU, he has remind himself no woman like her would ever want a life with him, even as he knows he must get this woman in his bed as soon as possible. But as Lin becomes an all-too-essential part of his new life in Chicago, can Kam keep himself from crossing the line between business and love?
Unlike Kam, Lin has spent her entire life keeping her own wants and desires locked safely away where they can never derail her successful career and devotion to Ian Noble, the only man she ever thought she wanted. Lin already knew even before Ian had found love with Francesca that he’d never be more to her than her boss and friend. But when she sees Kam Reardon for the first time, his physical resemblance to the man she can never have nearly takes her breath away. There are other similarities in personality and temperament, but it’s Kam, not Ian, who will stop at nothing to make Lin his own. Now Lin has to decide if it’s worth blowing up her carefully constructed life for someone who is either the best or worst thing that has ever happened to her.
Lin had been portrayed throughout the series as an emotionless superhuman, so it was gratifying to see her reactions to Kam as he quickly shook her sense of self down to its foundation. Even as she attempts to “civilize” him, he continues to expose the wildness she’s spent a lifetime keeping locked away. The passionate result of their physical alliance soon terrifies them both. But as they realize just how similar they really are, it’s trust that Lin and Kam need to find with each other, for only then can love survive whatever happens next.
What I loved the most about SINCE I SAW YOU was how the romance between Lin and Kam was the driving factor for the entire story, even as the various external pressures loomed large in the background. After the rollercoaster suspense of the previous book (which I did enjoy immensely), it was a relief to discover that what was most important in this book was learning more about what motivated both Kam and Lin in their lives up to the point when they first saw each other, and how they needed to trust their feelings for each other now over what had hurt them both in the past. Their understandable concerns about a lasting commitment may have led to the Big Misunderstanding that nearly split them apart, but it made sense in what had been slowly revealed during the story. Best of all, both Kam and Lin were able to realize their mistake in time to produce a beautiful scene of mutual apology leading to their own satisfying HEA.
SINCE I SAW YOU is a captivating example of a romance between driven personalities from different worlds who share a common goal of success in both business and love. It was a beautiful conclusion to one of my favorite recent series, and my only regret was that it had to end.
Sensuality level: 4 (multiple D/s scenes with main characters including semi-public sex, anal sex, and bondage)