He Belongs with Me by Sarah Darlington
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Two girls. One Leo.
twins, Maggie and Clara Ryder, both grew up with Leo Maddox,
billionaire playboy, apparent alcoholic, and heir to his grandfather's
world-famous Maddox hotel empire. Their roles were cemented long ago:
Maggie, as his best friend and Clara as his childhood nemesis.
when a simple twist of fate changes everything and both girls start to
fall for the lean, mean, ridiculously sexy and seemingly spoiled Leo...
which girl will win his heart?
Throw in a little mischief, drama,
and one smoking-hot bartender and lines are sure to blur. But one
thing's for certain, neither good-girl Maggie nor rebellious Clara will
be satisfied until they each figure out where they belong.
*NEW ADULT ROMANCE. Recommended for 17+ due to sexual situations and adult language.
This book started out really confusing to me. I knew going in that it was going to be about twins falling for the same guy. But honestly, it had been a while since I read the description, so I couldn’t remember the guy’s name. And I started it right before bed, so I was too lazy to get up and go check to see what the guy’s name was in the blurb. So when three guys were introduced in the first chapter, I was feeling very blonde. And I hate that feeling. Because while I am blonde, I don’t think I act blonde.
My initial impression was I hated the ex. I was hoping it wasn’t him and if it was, I couldn’t understand why either girl would be into him. Next was the guy that was best friends with one of the girls. She even said he was “hard to like” and implied he was a heavy drinker. So…why is that appealing? And guy number three…also has a history with both girls. And since both girls reacted strongly to him when they realized who he was, he was my pick for the monkey in the middle. However, I was off. Way off. So off that I had to pause and gather my thoughts because I had to rearrange my whole way of thinking to keep going. I really shouldn’t have been lazy and just gone to read the blurb again.
At the start of the book, I didn’t like Maggie. There was just something about her that set me off. But I liked Clara. Ok, honestly…they were both likeable, but I picked a side and I wanted Clara to get the guy. The problem is…I wanted her to get the guy of my choosing. But as time went on, I really started to loathe Maggie. She was narcissistic and selfish. And I came to dread the POV switch to her. She was so unlikeable to me that I wanted to give her cement shoes and push her off a cliff. And those feelings continued throughout the entire book. Honestly, I didn’t care if she got a HEA or not. I have to say that I wanted to punch her in the face when she decided to fight for the guy. She’s had every other guy chasing after her and yet when one guy decided he wants her sister instead, she can’t handle it. Near the end, there was a comment made about how Maggie loved Clara and I just couldn’t help but feel that was a lie. I never felt like Maggie loved her sister at all. If Clara had disappeared and never returned, I think Maggie would have been happy. Then everything would be about her all the time and she’d never have to deal with Clara again. Maggie went out of her way to exclude Clara from everything, even when they were kids. She did have a change in attitude, but it wasn’t sincere to me and by that point, I just didn’t care.
Clara. I loved Clara. She was considered the “bad” or “rebellious” twin, but I saw her as someone that just didn’t fit. She wanted different things than what her family wanted. And time and time again her family demonstrated that they knew nothing about her. They saw her sense of style and ever changing hair color and wrote her off as “rebellious” and didn’t bother to get to know her beyond that. The only one to really see her was Leo. And I loved everything about their relationship. I loved every moment of them together and him telling and showing her how much she meant to him. And every time he would do/say something, she would flash back to something from their past and see it in a new light with the new information she had.
I’m not one for love triangles, and while I didn’t care for that aspect in this book, I loved every moment of Clara and Leo. They alone were a 5 star read. But the mere presence of Maggie and her POV had to drop this down to a 4 for me.
View all my reviews on Goodreads.