4 out of 5 Stars
*I was provided a copy of Speaking Greek by the author in exchange for an honest review. I am not compensated for my honest opinion.*
Rules are important to Tess Richardson. Her life has always been structured by them. But the moment she steps off the boat and onto a Greek island for her internship, she realizes that rules can be broken. When Tess’ feelings for her billionaire boss Nico begin to grow, she’ll have to decide if she’s going to take a chance and break some rules of her own.
Nico Stephanos has lived a life with no rules. As the son of a business mogul, Nico’s had anything and everything he wants with no questions asked. Meeting Tess, his rule-following intern, begins to put things into a different perspective. While Nico learns to live life like the rest of the population, he discovers rules being broken in a different way. Nico will have to figure out where his true loyalties lie—with his family or with following the rules.
Speaking Greek is a contemporary romance set on the beautiful island of Georgios in Greece where Tess lands an internship with a shipping company. I appreciated the juxtaposition of the main characters’ traits—one was a rule-follower and one was a rule-breaker—which set up what each of them had to overcome. Tess needed to learn that sometimes it’s okay to break rules but you have to know which ones are okay to break. Nico needed to realize that the fortunate life he led wasn’t all it seemed.
Tess was a strong character, another quality I admired. She’d been brought up following rules her whole life and wasn’t about to give up everything she believed in just for a fling with a guy who was off-limits anyway. Even when she did bend the rules, she never totally lost her perspective. Nico’s character underwent great change and growth throughout the story, starting as a privileged playboy and finding his way to a more balanced life.
While the romance between polar opposites was attractive, the book didn’t hold me as much as I expected it to. I kept reading, interested to find out how things were going to play out with the relationship between the main characters as well as the business issues, but it was missing that wow factor that really grabs you. At the start, Nico was already thinking about how his life needed a change, so it was no surprise that his attraction to Tess made that happen. There was insta-attraction between the characters, and it felt like both were losing their hearts before really getting to know one another. I would have enjoyed seeing the Greek customs more if they were only shown instead of told.
Overall, I did enjoy the book and would read more in the series. I’ve read some of Ms. Laurence’s Lush series, which I really loved. Speaking Greek is book one in the Foreign Exchange series and can be read as a standalone.