Review: Rivalry (Slay Quartet #1) by Laurelin Paige

Title: Rivalry
Author:  Laurelin Paige
Publisher/Year:  Paige Press 6/4/19
Length:  296 Pages
Series:  Slay Quartet #1

Overview

Edward Fasbender is a devil.

He’s my father’s business rival, a powerful, vicious man who takes what he wants and bows to no one. I only took the meeting because I was curious. I thought he was going to offer me a job.

But that’s not what he’s after at all. His proposal is much more intriguing, and I see an opportunity. An opportunity to turn the tables and bring down the devil.

I’ve gotten in trouble playing these games before. I know when the risk is too great, when the stakes are too high. I know how to be cold and strong-willed and destructive. I know how to withstand dominant men with arrogant charm and rugged features.

Yet I can’t resist taking on Edward.

And I can’t resist the pull he has on me.

Soon I’m not so sure which side of the battle I’m standing on–if I’m the warrior meant to slay,

Or the one who will be slain.

My Thoughts

This is an interesting start to the series – giving us enough to keep us hanging on word for word, page by page, with the last line of the book giving us much to think about.

We meet our leading lady Celia who’s the daughter of a very successful media company owner. Her father has control over the entire US market and she’s been living in his shadow to an extent, and trying to forge her way forward. Her mother has these lofty goals for her – for the type of life she’s supposed to have now that she’s an ‘adult’ and yet that’s not the path that’s laid out in front of her. The expectation was that she would marry Hudson, an ex i suppose, but life didn’t work that way. So we see the fall out from that without really knowing what happened, and it’s damaged everyone. What did come from that though is The Game.

The Game is a manipulation that Celia was taught by Hudson in how to get what she wants from people, in how to ruin people and in doing so, she’s walled herself off from even herself. She’s got no emotions any longer and she’s got a black soul. Perhaps that’s why Edward is so intriguing, since he’s clearly playing his own game and he gets under her skin.

Edward on the other hand is our dominating British lead – a man who’s equally as successful as Celia’s father in every market BUT the US and cannot seem to break into the market. That’s where his play comes to life, marrying Celia in order to get what he wants from her father.

The path that this first installment takes is one where we watch what’s unfolding in front of each main character. They have their boundaries, and yet they are not boundaries at all. Edward requires complete submission and control, someone who will look nice on his arm but will never argue or contradict him. Celia on the other hand is the complete opposite of that, except for when Edward gets a tone in his voice and she has no choice but to follow. In agreeing to his terms, she lays the ground work for her next Game. She’s intent on ruining him and how that will play out, we don’t know yet. What we do know though is that she thought she was under cover when she was trying to gain intel on Edward, but the last line of the book makes us think that her cover was blown. So…..we know that the intent is for this marriage to last as short as possible and that everything that Edward wants will be his. What ii wonder though is whether he knew what he was getting into with her and whether he’s prepared to play defense since she’s far smarter than he’s given her credit for. Off to book 2 now – enjoy!