Title: Hostile Workplace
Author: A.M. Madden
Series: Breaking the Rules #2
Release: September 6, 2016
Sam Stanton knows these simple facts:
~ He is a great catch–successful, smart, gorgeous…but the wrong woman caught him.
~ He has the perfect girl who is madly in love with him.
~ He wasted six years of his life by playing it safe.
~ He is damn good at his job and intends to keep climbing the ladder.
~ He can’t get her off his mind or out of his heart–no matter how hard he tries.
But, what he doesn’t know is just as important:
~ Will he ever really move on and forget how badly she broke his heart?
~ Should he settle for a sure thing, even knowing it’s the wrong thing?
~ Can he give up his career for a chance at happiness?
~ Does he correct one mistake with another?
~ What would he do if she were to return?
Confused yet? Welcome to Sam Stanton’s life.
A.M. Madden delivers the next scorching hot novel in the Breaking the Rules series with Hostile Workplace. Sam’s story is a second chance romance and one that will definitely crank up the heat. This book was filled with great, colorful characters, most of who ended up taking me by surprise. Sam and Lydia had fantastic chemistry and I quickly found myself addicted to their sharp banter, lust-laden interactions, and witty flirtations. A.M. Madden not only cultivated an incredibly visceral electricity between this couple, but she also crafted an undeniable emotional connection that tugged on my heart and kept me invested in Sam and Lydia’s happily ever after. A.M. Madden keeps readers guessing with plenty of surprising moments and lots of forbidden encounters in this delightfully smart and absolutely sizzling novel.
“Loneliness was easy to understand—and easy to fix. It was when other crap happened like disappointment or anger or even confusion that it muddied the waters.”
My feelings for Sam were very much that of a Love/Hate relationship. For almost the first half of the book, A.M. Madden had me wanting to slap him. His apathy towards his current relationship and the ease with which he lusted after other women made him a bit hard to take at first, although he wasn’t a cheater so that was a definite plus. I wish more of what unraveled at the end of the book had been hinted at in subtle ways during the beginning, I think it would have helped me to empathize with Sam and made his personality less abrasive so I could have connected with him more. As a character, I never really felt for him until the last quarter or so of the story because so much of his perceived selfishness and douchebag behavior from the beginning set the tone for the rest of the book. To be fair, Sam had many great qualities in terms of his loyalty to his friends and family and the deep love he obviously held for Lydia that struck a chord with me. Not to mention he did eventually redeem himself in a big way.
“I knew the moment we saw each other again, we’d fix everything that was broken. Every day, I waited for that day to come.”
Lydia, on the other hand, was pretty much a winning heroine in my book. I loved her confidence, drive, and the fact that she had made a successful career for herself despite everything she had been through. Plus, she didn’t take Sam’s crap and pushed right back, which made me absolutely giddy since he clearly needed to be taken down a peg or two. My favorite thing about this character though was the way in which A.M. Madden exposed her vulnerabilities and insecurities, making her feel entirely genuine and allowing me to connect with her on the most basic level. I couldn’t even fault her for the way she handled her past with Sam because she was a teenager at the time and a certain level of immaturity is expected, especially when you consider the other emotions she was dealing with at the time. I adored the way Lydia treated her co-workers and the ease with which she fit into Sam’s family. These outside relationships really revealed the goodness of her character and made me adore her that much more.
“When love came so powerfully at such an early age, wasn’t it doomed to fail?”
I definitely enjoyed the storyline that A.M. Madden put together with Hostile Workplace. It leant itself to some seriously delicious tension and powerful emotional angst. This book was definitely a rollercoaster ride made that much more interesting by the various surprises the author had up her sleeve. I especially loved being able to see the rest of the Stanton’s again and swoon once more over Marco and Rebecca. Admittedly, the pacing felt a bit uneven to me. The first half of the novel moved slowly while the ending came across as rather abrupt. Despite the quick conclusion, A.M. Madden does provide a sincerely satisfying epilogue that will leave you grinning. A.M. Madden’s growth is evident in this novel, her voice and writing style becoming more defined with each new novel. Hostile Workplace was captivating, vibrant, and filled with honest emotion, including just enough heartbreak to keep me flipping the pages. I can’t wait to see what’s next from this series!
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Don’t miss the rest of the series:
Love On the Horizon (Breaking the Rules #1)
A.M. Madden is a USA Today bestselling author, as well as 2016 eLit Gold Medalist for Best Romance Ebook, and 2016 Ippy Award Silver Medalist for Best Romance Ebook.
A.M. is a wife, a mother, an avid reader of romance novels, and now an author.
“It’s all about the HEA.”
A.M. Madden is the author of the popular Back-Up Series, as well as several other contemporary romances. She also writes the True Heroes Series for Random House.
Her debut novel was Back-up, the first in The Back-Up Series. In Back-Up, A.M.’s main character Jack Lair caused readers to swoon. They call themselves #LairLovers, and have been faithful supporters to Jack, as well to the rest of his band, Devil’s Lair.
A.M. truly believes that true love knows no bounds. In her books, she aspires to create fun, sexy, realistic romances that will stay with you after the last page has been turned. She strives to create characters that the reader can relate to and feel as if they know personally.
A self-proclaimed hopeless romantic, she loves getting lost in a good book. She also uses every free moment of her time writing, while spending quality time with her three handsome men. A.M. is a Gemini and an Italian Jersey girl, but despite her Zodiac sign, nationality, or home state, she is very easy going.
She loves the beach, loves to laugh, and loves the idea of love.