Genre: LGBTQIA+, Adult Contemporary Romance
Recommend to Others?: Yes
ABOUT: What happens when the one person who makes your heart sing is also the one person who could destroy everything you’ve worked for?
Laurie “the Hatchet” Emerson is a ruthless leader in Boston finance who’s rumoured to have a block of ice where her heart should be. If only. Recently widowed, Laurie fears she’s broken beyond repair, until a once-in-a-lifetime business deal reignites her passion for work and gives her a shot at proving to the world she still has some life left in her.
Jack Kennedy is a young portfolio manager who aspires to greatness. Unfortunately, she’s so many rungs down the corporate ladder she can’t even scrape up enough money to move out of her mother’s apartment. Her luck changes when her work ethic is finally rewarded with the job opportunity of her dreams.
A blizzard forces their worlds to collide, but what was meant to be a no-strings night of passion becomes more complicated when they both arrive at the office the next morning to discover they each spent the night with the one person in the city who could crush their futures.
Together, they just might hold the keys to everything they’ve ever wanted, but the difference in their ages and positions could spell the end of their careers. Will the ice queen and the protégé find happiness together or lose everything?
My Review: Heart of Ice was a good office romance between two strong-willed, career-driven women who are twenty years apart in age. Their charged attraction and opposing personalities kept my engaged in everything happening throughout the story.
CEO Laurie (49) – or as she’s known around the office, “Laurie the Hatchet” – returns from a “forced” sabbatical after the death of her wife. She’s a hard taskmaster – she’s had to be as a woman business owner in the financial industry. Determined to obtain the company’s biggest client yet, she needs the best team and best idea possible to beat out her interim CEO/stepson. What she didn’t expect was one of her team members also being her one-night stand, Jack, who she obviously has strong feelings for.
Sometimes Laurie’s stubbornness was grating and she would impulsively lash out at Jack. I think part of the reason that Laurie behaves this way is because she wants to save the firm and the legacy Bonnie (her late wife) had built. Laurie also does care about Jack, but that doesn’t excuse her poor actions and reactions.
Jack (29) is lovingly witty and sassy. She’s the kind of hard-working and knowledgeable person you’d be lucky to work with. Jack has worked hard to build her career in a male dominated field. Brought on to be the team’s portfolio manager, this is the perfect chance for Jack to boost her career and prove her worth. What complicated things was her growing attraction to Laurie (her boss) who is very set in her ways and tends to run hot and cold in a way. This made it difficult for Jack to pinpoint where she stood with Laurie.
Jack really surprised me by how cool, calm and collected she was whenever Laurie was being obstinate. There were times when I thought Jack would walk away from the situation. She kind of does much of the legwork in their rocky relationship. I think her wanting to prove herself outweighed the consequences should anyone find out that she and Laurie spent the night together.
Laurie and Jack have fantastic chemistry both romantically and professionally, even when it sometimes doesn’t look like it. Despite their age gap, they are more alike than unalike. There were lots of great will-they won’t-they moments and and funny banter, such as when they played ping-pong together. The few intimate scenes were mildly steamy but showed how deeply attracted they were to each other.
Jack’s good nature and youth challenges Laurie who is set in her ways. Laurie’s hard exterior makes it difficult to open her heart back up for a second chance at love. Laurie is not used to someone like Jack who brings new perspectives Laurie might not have otherwise considered. Jack also sees the good, caring side of Laurie that was only ever shown to Bonnie. In Laurie, Jack sees someone who values her skills and what she can bring to the table, which is what Jack has been wanting for so long.
Jack and Laurie’s relationship was well developed. I came to really care about these characters and wanted badly to see them succeed in all aspects of life. I liked Jack’s quirky mom and Laurie’s office manager and confidant, Marian. There were many setbacks but everything came together quite nicely. I loved the ending, which was feeling galore! It made me want to keep reading to see what the future had in store for these two strong-willed women. Heart of Ice was a pleasant read.