Hacker Series: One
by Meredith Wild
Determined to overcome a difficult past, Erica Hathaway learns early on how to make it on her own. Days after her college graduation she finds herself face to face with a panel of investors who will make or break her fledgling startup. The only thing she didn't prepare for was going weak in the knees over an arrogant and gorgeous investor who's seemingly determined to derail her presentation.
Billionaire and rumored hacker Blake Landon has already made his fortune in software, and he's used to getting what he wants with very little resistance. Captivated by Erica's drive and unassuming beauty, he's wanted nothing more since she stepped into his boardroom. Determined to win her over, he breaks down her defenses and fights for her trust, even if that means sacrificing a level of control he's grown accustomed to.
But when Blake uncovers a dark secret from Erica's past, he threatens not just her trust, but the life she's fought so hard to create.
I know a lot of romance readers get tired of the billionaire bad boy falling/lusting/obsessing after a woman trying to make something for herself. I don't like every billionaire romance I read, but I think that it's all about 1) the chemistry, and 2) external "interesting" factors. Hardwired is one of those books. Erica is a strong woman whose goal is to make sure her startup succeeds. She's success oriented and is looking for an investor for said start up. Enter Blake, a billionaire and rumored hacker who drives Erica insane and ultimately becomes determined to have her fall for him.
The chemistry between Blake and Erica is white hot and part of that is because it stems from the anger Erica feels toward Blake. They say there's a thin line between love and hate for a reason of course, and this duo straddles that line just right (no pun intended, I promise).
Now, the "interesting" factors are part of my trope-love: geeky, nerdy goodness. First of all, Erica has an appreciation for things technology and the only way this could be so much better is if she, herself, was a hacker. But alas, I wasn't blessed with that bit. Blake, however, is a super-hacker, something made more attractive by the fact that he doesn't constantly flaunt his skills. They simply are an asset.
If you have a penchant for billionaire romances (because what is more fictional than a super rich, intelligent man with a streak of sweetness and all the time in the world to pay attention to one woman?), take a look at this series. I am looking forward to the rest of it myself!