I’ve been loving marriage of convenience romances lately and they seem to be more popular than ever, so it’s got me thinking about one of the more memorable ones I’ve read – You Can Have Manhattan! I fell in love with P. Dangelico’s writing back in 2019, and this book remains one of my favorites from her. It’s enemies to lovers/former playboy/marriage of convenience with tons of forced proximity and sexual tension. There’s something about Dangelico’s writing that has always been immensely bingeable for me, and I devoured this quickly. Based on my review, I was very happy with the reading experience at the time, lol, and that’s probably why it’s left such an impression on me.
Read on for my original review!
Oh my God, that was GOOD. Not that I expected any less from P. Dangelico because everything I’ve read by her has been fantastic, but this sucked me in from the start and kept me riveted until the very last page. I had to take a brief break to sleep overnight, but I really wasn’t happy about it. It’s so complex and deeply romantic, pairing two people who should not fit together but somehow work perfectly (at least now that they’ve had some time to mature). The ultimate slow burn, I found myself loving reformed “party whore” Scott and his slow dive into love.
The story follows Sydney, a workaholic lawyer living in New York City who has thrived in life despite her horrible upbringing. She’s devoted to her work and the man who gave her life purpose, and she would do anything to keep him happy…. so when he tells her his dying wish is that she marry his disappointment of a son so that she can take over the company after his death, it’s not something she can refuse. Sydney met Scott about 10 years ago, and he certainly left an impression… but not in a good way. The stereotypical wealthy party whore, Scott had no shame and no desire for more from life. He’s no more enthusiastic about the marriage than Sydney is, especially since he finally has his life on track and is living how he wants out in Wyoming, but he’s got his own reasons for agreeing to the marriage. They just need to get through the next 3 years without killing each other, and then they can both move on with their own lives.
I read a lot of marriage of convenience romance novels, and I love the forced closeness that comes from the couple living together. I also love the banter that comes from an enemies to lovers romance, the tension and slow build to love. This is no different but it is done SO WELL. Everything felt so authentic; these characters go through every emotion imaginable, slowly building from resentful roommates into true partners in marriage. Dangelico navigates the complexities perfectly, because a man who used to let his desire motivate his every action is not an inherently likeable character, but I absolutely loved Scott. He shows how much he’s grown and proves himself to be a worthy partner for the strong and steady Sydney. It was well worth the read!
You are cordially invited to the worst wedding of the century.
Sydney Evans is no stranger to hard work. It’s the one constant in her life. And with no family or friends to speak of it’s been easy to pour everything she has into her career as general counsel for Blackstone Holdings.
She wants for nothing. Until her boss offers her a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. All she has to do in return is marry his good-for-nothing son.
Scott Blackstone used be a party whore. Pardon, party animal. He hasn’t been that guy in a long time though. Not since he moved to Wyoming, bought a failing cattle ranch, and turned it into a profitable business.
All is good. Until a phone call from his father threatens the quiet, simple life he’s built. Marry or lose everything. And to a woman who can’t stand him, no less. Well, Scott is not going down without a fight. He’s never going back to Manhattan. Not if he can help it.
About the Author:
Paola Dangelico loves romance in all forms, pulp fiction, the NY Jets, and to while away the day at the barn (apparently she does her best thinking shoveling horse poop). She was born in Milan, Italy, grew up in New Jersey watching her father paint the covers of bestselling romance authors like Danielle Steel and Amanda Quick, and after a long stint on the left coast, she returned to the right coast to write about finding love in a modern world. Presently, she resides in New Jersey with her fur family.
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