Series: Roughneck Billionaires, #3
Published by Intermix on May 15th 2018
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Knox Price has always fallen short in comparison to his brothers. Boone is the ambitious one. Clay is the nice one. Gage is the handsome one. And Knox? Well, he's the cynical one. The odd man out in the ultra-wealthy but rather unique Price family. It's not that Knox hates people--it's that humanity always disappoints him. When you become an oil-rich, Texan billionaire overnight, people treat you a certain way. Just once he'd like to meet someone that isn't dazzled by his wallet.
Then, he meets struggling yoga teacher Lexi Brandon. She's weird. She's unpredictable and tends to say strange things. She lurks in the bushes and dresses in all black. She loves when people cross the street to get away from her. Lexi's definitely not his type, but she's also the first one to ever truly see him and not just another rich, dirty Price.
And that's...fascinating. But how do you catch the interest of a woman who goes out of her way to be odd? When an unexpected surprise throws them both for a loop, Knox decides it's time to get down and dirty, abandon the rules, and be who he truly is--a bastard.
I’m a little unsure about my own feelings when it comes to Jessica Clare’s roughneck billionaires. Yes, these Price brothers from different mothers are similar in their crude, blunt ways and as they’re the opposite of smooth and sleek and schmoozy, they’re refreshingly different from the suit-clad businessmen with their ability to get everything they want. But these brothers are also sometimes unavoidably simplistic and they do in some ways, remind me of Alexa Riley’s heroes who fall hard and instantly with the burning need to claim women they see at first glance as theirs.
Knox equating a one-night stand with the notion of forever does seem somewhat excessive, but the instalove that Knox feels isn’t really out of character for these Price brothers however. ‘Dirty Bastard’ does however, take a direction I didn’t expect or like nonetheless. I should have been expecting this considering the sheer stupidity of Lexi going into an affair with Knox for the express and calculated purpose of avoiding her stalker. From the start, Lexi runs away and keeps running away when this night (again due to her own recklessness) results in unintended though not unexpected consequences, then using her own issues as ammunition to petulantly refuse everything Knox offers made her thoroughly unlikeable. Acting like a spoilt teen makes their 5-year-age-gap (older woman, younger man) of no consequence as a result, as Lexi seems to regress into someone who sits on a raised chair while waiting for Knox to climb the uphill battle on his own to get into her ‘good’ graces.
From here onwards, I struggled hard to continue the book, not just because of the storytelling and characterisation that at times, made both Knox/Lexi seem like high-school figures rather than the adults they are, but also because of the way Lexi sat high and mighty while poor Knox had to bend backwards for her. As Lexi used Knox’s age as an excuse to get out of commitment by saying *he* was the one who wanted to play the field when all he did was want the opposite made me throw in the towel in the end. Not being able to get behind this pairing was almost a guarantee when there was an annoying protagonist whom I felt just didn’t deserve the title of ‘heroine’ at all, nor of Knox.