Title: Romancing the Ugly Duckling
Author: Clare London
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: June 15, 2017
Genre(s): Contemporary M/M
Page Count: 226
Reviewed by: Susan
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Is this the makeover of a lifetime?
Ambitious fashionista Perry Goodwood lands the project of his dreams—track down a celebrity family’s missing brother in the Scottish Highlands and bring him back to London for a TV reality show. But first he must transform the rugged loner into a glamorous sophisticate.
Greg Ventura has no use for high fashion. He lives on the isolated island of North Uist to escape the reminder that he’s nowhere near as handsome as his gorgeous brothers and avoid the painful childhood memories of being bullied.
Greg wants nothing to do with city life, and Perry’s never been outside London. When Perry is stranded on North Uist, this conflict seems insurmountable. But Greg is captivated by the vivacious Perry, and Perry by both the island and his host. However, Perry’s one heartfelt wish remains: that ugly duckling Greg fulfill his potential as a swan.
This was just so cute. Such a feel good romance with the added bonus of it taking place in the beautiful country of Scotland.
I got all this cozy autumn/winter feelings from reading this. I loved the descriptions of the beautiful lochs and the cold and wet weather. It made me want to bundle up in a blanket and drink hot chocolate.
Perry is a high maintenance kind of guy, with his carefully picked out clothes, his perfect hair and his desire to always look his best. But then he gets sent to Scotland for his work. The PR agency wants him to find Greg Ventura of the Venturas, give him a makeover and bring him back to London to star in a TV reality show with his highly successful brothers.
And that’s how Perry finds himself soaking wet on Greg Ventura’s doorstep. Hair ruined, clothes ruined, boots ruined. But he will convince this stubborn man to return to London with him.
Greg hasn’t seen his brothers in 5 years. His brothers bullied him mercilessly throughout his teenage years, so that’s why Greg thinks he really is an ugly duckling. Greg is happy with his solitary life in Scotland, and he sure does not need some London guy with amazing hair to tell him he is gorgeous and that his brothers need him…
I loved how sweet both Greg and Perry were. Perry started out as a bit of a snob, but he ended up fitting right into the country life of Scotland. And Greg really was convinced he was not worth looking at or deserving of love. These two slowly grew closer and when they finally got together, the relationship was sweet and without any angst (yay!).
As for the steam, there were a few smexy times, but not drawn out or very long. But I don’t think that was really necessary for the story. It was just right the way it was.
Overall I really enjoyed this ‘ugly duckling’ story. I will especially re-read it when it’s raining and cold outside and I’m on my couch with my blanket and a cup of tea.