So I previously read First Time: Penny #2 and realize that if maybe I had read "The Boss" first I would have liked it more. Instead, I saw the same themes and had the same issues with this book that I had with that one.
I know that Abigail Barnette (Jenny Trout) wrote this book as the anti-Fifty Shades of Grey. And believe me I am happy that she actually did a very good job of showing a BDSM relationship that didn't have the same crap going on with Christian and Anastasia in that book. I could be here all day criticizing that book people, I won't though because I have things to do.
That said, I think that Barnette went too far to the other side. You have a young woman who is 24 who is sexually open (very good) but seemed sexually open to the point that she felt like a caricature. I would have been fine if Sophie balked at doing anything with Neil, that would have shown her being a woman in charge of her sexuality. Instead though it just seemed everything that was suggested to her was honky dory. And it was great that she didn't want a relationship or kids or even marriage (though the relationship thing was kind of bs though). Neil is a non-entity in this book. I have no idea what he did all day besides write notes to Sophie, miss her, and give her awesome orgasms. I may have hated Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey, but at least he was present in the book.
We have Sophie Scaife (that name is killing me) who is 24 and still fantasizes about a man named Leif that she ended up having a one night stand with 8 years ago. Sophie is thrown for a loop when she comes into work at her job at a magazine (I think it was called Proteras) and finds out her demanding boss is gone and in her place is Leif, otherwise known as Neil Elwood. Sophie and Neil are looking to re-kindle their hot affair with the knowledge they have to be careful since Neil is Sophie's boss.
There is a lot of hand-waving going on for all parties involved for Sophie to somehow not be able to recognize that the guy she was with 6 years ago was billionaire Neil Elwood. There are some asides that Sophie thought he looked similar but I had to stop laughing at that point.
I had the same issue with Sophie that I did with Penny in "First Time: Penny #2" for the age that these women are I find it hard to reconcile how they act in a relationship. Or in Sophie's case, she doesn't want a relationship with Neil (yeah right, this is contradicted the whole way through until she does an oh my God I am in love with Neil aside to herself) since she wants to have a job and have her own time to herself. She also doesn't want to have kids and isn't it great that Neil doesn't want that either (though he does have a daughter Sophie's age).
I think my main issue really is though that I did not get a sense of Sophie as a real live 24 year old. Sorry. I don't think I would be a-okay with having anal sex with a dude I just met. Or that I would be down for BDSM after reading three books about it. Or that when your lover tells you about how he has been with other men just say cool to myself. I wanted there to actually be thinking and discussing involved. Instead most of the discussing was just Sophie telling Neil to just go ahead and (expletive) her and then her a few times letting him know when she had too much. I just needed there to be something between them besides sex because the whole relationship rang so hollow to me.
I just found Sophie inconsistent as anything throughout the book. Shocker yes, a 24 year old is inconsistent. For someone that was all about being professional, she still was running around and acting submissive to her boss and oh yeah was having sex with him and then got mad that people at the company (rightfully) thought they were having sex with each other and that's why she got a promotion. She wanted to be a grown up woman, but once she knew about something that would impact the company she didn't tell Neil and oh he fired her. But then they giggled about it after, talked about sex, and he gave her jewelry (I am not kidding). I just couldn't get into this book as much as I wanted to.
Neil is a 48 year old man who apparently has the biggest (expletive) ever and has the libido of a 20 year old and is in love with Sophie because...reasons. Cause so far this book has not shown me one reason why he is in into her besides her age. The same issue I had with "First TIme" rears it's head here. I don't want to just assume it's her age he is into, but come on dude. What else is there? They don't have conversations about their life. Sophie Googles Neil at one point to find out about him. And when she actually does meet his daughter, Sophie gets upset that it doesn't go well and Neil is surprise by this as well (have these two ever met another human being before?)
The other characters don't fare well in this book either. We have a friend of Sophie's named Jake that sounded like an okay guy but turned into a Death Eater out of nowhere. Sophie's roommate Holli is a hot supermodel who can eat what she wants and has no boundaries sexually. There is an entire conversation that Holli, Sophie, and someone that Hollis is seeing that involves rape, abortion, and the whole thing was played weirdly for laughs I think.
The writing got a bit repetitive after a while. There were so many quirks to Sophie that I wanted to yell. She smirks a lot. In fact I don't think I went more than 2 or 3 pages without her smirking on it. There are more than the average number of sex scenes I think in this book. Not usually a bad thing, but I found myself getting bored. Most of the book was these two having sex and not discussing work and talking dirty to each other. I was just bored and needed some actual plot. Why the plot ended up being about a potentially hostile takeover to the magazine and then shifted to people leaving the magazine to start their own was weird.
The flow wasn't that great. I think it was because we would have sex, sex, sex, Sophie talking to Holli, Sophie acknowledging she should tell Neil something, sex, dirty texts, smirk, smirk, oh yeah here's Rudy, and sex again.
The setting of New York I wish had felt more real in this book. We only have Sophie at work, in a hotel room, at Neil's place, and at her place. Oh I forgot, I think they went to a restaurant twice. We know that Sophie has a mom and a missing in action dad, but she never speaks to them.
The ending was kind of a mess. I think this is to set the stage for book number two, "The Girlfriend (The Boss #2). I am going to pass on that. I really did like "Bad Boy, Good Man" and hoped for more of that which is why I bought the latest two books from the author I did.