The one. The only. Leo Maddox.
Leo’s cocky. He’s mean. He’s gorgeous. He’s never learned the meaning of the word no. He’s the twenty-one-year-old, billionaire grandson of a hotel mogul. He has vacation homes he’s never been to and cars he doesn’t drive. Women. Fashion. Alcohol. There’s nothing he can’t get. Well…almost nothing.
He can’t have her. The girl he loves. The girl he’s loved his entire life. She hates him. Until one morning when Leo wakes up and decides enough is enough. He’s going to get the only girl he’s ever wanted. So what if she has a new boyfriend. So what if she loathes his very existence. Clara belongs with him and he’s going to prove it to her by winning her heart.
*This New Adult Romance is told entirely from Leo Maddox’s POV. It can be read before, after, or in place of Sarah Darlington's stand alone novel He Belongs With Me. Recommended for readers 18+ due to strong language and sexy scenes.
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BOOK REVIEW: Leo Maddox by Sarah Darlington
Leo Maddox is the companion book to He BelongsWith Me, which is the story of Leo and twin sisters Clara and Maggie Ryder. He Belongs With Me is told from Clara and Maggie’s point of view. This one is told from Leo’s.
21 year old Leo Maddox is the privileged son of a hotel mogul and eventual heir to a fortune. But Leo has lived a lonely life. His mother abandoned him and his father pays him little attention outside of the business world. Leo can be cocky. Leo can be snarky. And Leo has a few vices, although most of them are more in the past than other people realize. But Leo’s biggest problem for most of his life is that the girl he’s in love with barely notices him, and when she does it’s generally to argue with.
Call it a sixth sense that sends Leo back to Blue Creek, Virginia (where the twins reside over summer vacation) on a fateful night that results in a little golf cart fiasco, an incident that finally puts Leo on Clara’s radar. Leo and Clara have had a love/hate relationship all their life growing up together. Maggie is Leo’s best friend and while their family and peers might assume that they will end up together, it’s Clara’s affection that Leo craves. But even once Clara begins to realize her true feelings for Leo, Leo must turn around their rocky relationship.
“Prove to me you aren't an ass and I’m all yours.” –Clara
Can Leo step up to the plate and woo Clara or will he put his foot in his mouth again and lose his possibly one and only chance with her?
The story follows the same plot as He Belongs With Me along with some extra scenes specific to Leo. Stories told entirely from the male point of view aren’t plentiful so if you enjoy the male perspective, this is one to pick up! If you’ve already read He Belongs With Me you can think of this as “rewatching” it with Leo’s commentary turned on ;-) You get extra insight into what Leo was thinking and feeling as well as some behind the scenes information, unbeknownst to the girls.
I enjoyed getting Leo’s voice this time around as well as hearing some key scenes from his point of view. I laughed at how Leo realized Clara’s “skills” lacked experience. It definitely captured the guy perceptive. I did miss the “mystery” aspect that He Belongs With Me offered as Dean’s exact identity and life unfolded as well as the little chapter cliffy’s that came with the shifting point of view of the girls. But it was still fun to get inside Leo’s head.
Whether you read Leo’s version of the story or the twins or both, the characters are cute and likeable, and the plot is a lot of fun. Want to learn more about Leo, Clara, and Maggie? Keep reading for an exclusive interview with the characters…
"Five Questions with Leo Maddox, Clara, and Maggie"
Hi gang! Thanks for taking some time away from Blue Creek to come visit with Book-Bosomed Book Blog. (Sorry it’s not
Clara.) Still, I hope you guys have fun while readers get to know a little more
Since Leo’s version of events is hitting shelves, let’s get started with him…
Q1. Leo—Clara and Maggie might be identical twins but we know they are very different. In 3 words each, describe both Clara and Maggie.
A. Leo: For Clara... Sexy, beautiful, fun, loving, and stubborn. Sorry, three words just isn't enough for Clara.
And for Maggie... Smart, loyal, and kind.
Q2. Leo—Dean likes Maggie in her red dress. Since you have such a keen sense of fashion yourself, what do you like Clara in best?
A. Leo: Nothing at all. ;) But on a serious note... Clara has a sense of style all her own. And the rest of the world might find it random, but I love it. She can wear a paper bag and still look gorgeous as hell.
Q3. This question is for the twins, let’s put Leo on the hot seat a moment and discuss him. Clara—what is Leo’s greatest strength? Maggie—what is Leo’s greatest weakness?
A. Clara: Is assholeness a word? Leo can be a bit of smartass sometimes, but it's one of the things I love about him most. He's ruthless when he wants to be and I love it.
Maggie: His vices. Alcohol and such. Clara keeps him line these days though, so he's getting much better.
Q4. Clara—You and Leo have had a tumultuous relationship over the years and you’ve done some crazy things to him. What’s the meanest thing Leo has ever said to you? And how’s he doing now in terms of proving himself? Anything specific that you’d like to share that he’s done to wow you lately?
Clara: The meanest? Um, probably at my high school graduation party. I never really wanted a party, but my dad invited everyone anyway and held this giant dance. It was ridiculous, bigger than a wedding reception, and not my style. So, I decided to announce, in front of everyone, how much I hated golf and was never playing again. So everyone could finally stop calling me the "Reed Ryder of the future." Leo called my bluff. He stood up, telling the entire room that I was "a child throwing a temper tantrum" and not to believe a single word. I was embarrassed. Looking back, turns out he was right. I've never stopped loving or playing golf.
Leo and I still fight–that's never going to change. The only different now is that we make up. And I sure love making up. ;) We're honest with each other and now I know when he butts heads with me, he's really only doing it for my own good.
As for wowing me...Leo recently surprised me with a trip to
We rode donkeys down the Grand Canyon. Leo hated
it. But it was so fun watching him pretend to like it just for me. Don't worry,
after that adventure, we spent the majority of the trip in the hotel
room--doing stuff we both enjoyed. ;)
Q5. Last question to everyone (Leo, Clara, and Maggie)—where do you see yourselves in five years?
Maggie: Well, now that I'm dating Dean my life has changed quite a bit. He has a daughter. She never knew her mom, while my mom died young, and I try everyday to be a positive role model she can look up to. I hope in five years I am still doing the exact same thing. I love Dean and his daughter and I want to make this a permanent thing.
Clara: Five years? Hmmm... Well, I've started golfing more. Dad has been working with me lately and it has been going very well. I might be better than him in five years. Let's face it, he getting kind of rusty. Don't tell him I said that. In five years I'm thinking I might try to do it professionally. As for Leo...I can't even picture my life without him anymore. In five years I hope that will remain true.
Leo: I'll be with Clara. The rest really doesn't matter beyond that. She's my future.
Thanks Leo, Clara, Maggie...and Sarah! Had a blast reading your stories!
Sarah Darlington lives in Virginia with her husband and amazing two-year-old son. She's a former flight attendant, navy brat, constant day-dreamer, wannabe photographer, and an avid scrapbooker. She loves to travel and is working on visiting all 50 states.
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Also by Sarah:
Read the blog's 5 Star Book Review of He Belongs With Me
Read the blog's 5 Star Book Review of Kill Devil Hills