Chloe is a 20 something aspiring lawyer who has just gotten a coveted internship in the intellectual property department at Frost Industries, a biomedical corporation. She has a past that haunts her as she tries to escape the limits it’s placed on her both physically and emotionally. Being that she’s working an internship that will not allow much time for a paying job, she doesn’t have much for financial stability so she lives with her best friend from college, Tori, who has issues of her own but a trust fund to provide more than enough to keep them with a roof over their heads.
Ethan Frost is on his way to being a billionaire. He's the charismatic founder and CEO of Frost Industries. Brought up by his grandparents, because his father died and his mother was pretty much out of the picture by then, he created the company in hopes of bettering the lives of people suffering from various conditions/injuries. This he does in the honor of his father. He’s a man who knows what he wants and goes after it with a conviction and passion while keeping the greater good in mind as he does.
A chance encounter provides the occasion where Chloe and Ethan first meet. While they don’t really realize who it is they are meeting at the time, neither of them can get the other out of their mind afterwards. Ethan’s advantage in the situation allows for him to identify who Chloe is and so the pursuit begins. Once Chloe realizes that it’s Ethan Frost that she has, unknowingly, been thinking about she is determined to put an end to that… and so the chase begins. She quickly discovers that their attraction is too strong to shake and finds that she is surprisingly more comfortable with Ethan than she has been with any male since a tragic occurrence in her past. Ethan will not let her get away easily and he pulls out all stops on trying to get her to give them a chance. Of course because he’s Ethan Frost and she is an internship for his corporation, her fellow peers snub and harass her for what they feel is favoritism, bringing back some hurtful memories from her past.
As the story goes on we find that there are ghosts in Chloe’s past, that are eventually uncovered, but there are also some in Ethan’s which aren’t as quick to make their appearance. There are hints and such for Chloe’s so you can sort of guess what the deal is however, when she finally let’s Ethan in on her past you find that there are some nuances that may surprise in regards to what really happened. The story is told from Chloe’s point of view so as the reader you get the details on her past but she only provides Ethan with the overall event and leaves out some of the details that she feels more shamed about. The 2 of them bond over that however Ethan doesn’t really share much of his past and Chloe begins to realize that there have been signs of something he keeps hidden so she decides she needs to try to get him to open up. Soon the occasion to do so arises and Ethan tries to push her away however, as heated and angry as things get the 2 of them find that it only provides fuel to their explosive attraction and they just can’t walk away.
The story ends with a shocking turn of events that I for one didn’t even have on my radar and I’m normally pretty good at figuring things out. It wasn’t the first surprise in the book but it is what pushed this to a 5 star read for me and it makes me want to get my hands on the next book in the series, Addicted, ASAP!
Ruined is likened to Fifty Shades of Grey, and books of that nature, however while there is a strong dominant male he is much more likable and less domineering than the males in the other books. There is also not BDSM but there are some slight hints to some aspects of it and I liked this read more than Fifty Shades. Rest assured, there are some steamy scenes and the characters are easy to enjoy. I definitely recommend this book, if erotica is within your comfort zone... even if it's not!
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I was provided with an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.