Best friends since college, Gabe, Jace and Ash are now billionaires and the founders of HCM Global Resorts and Hotels. Gabe Hamilton has been lusting after Jace’s baby sister, Mia Crestwell for years now. It’s been an obsession and preoccupation for him and now that she is twenty-four and all woman, he’s decided he will no longer fight it. With the fourteen year age difference between the two, he has never acted on his lust until now. At age sixteen Mia had fantasies of Gabe and to this day his confidence and arrogance draws her to him like a moth to a flame. When Gabe sees Mia across the ballroom at the HCM grand opening, predator to prey, he decides it is time to make his move and take possession of the “forbidden fruit” known as Mia. Gabe sweeps Mia into a dance, then a devouring kiss, and finally demands that she meet with him in his office the following day. When Mia arrives to Gabe’s office, he quickly addresses the business at hand. Gabe proposes that Mia come to work for him at HCM as his personal assistant, but the position is only a mask. Gabe’s purpose of Mia’s non traditional working relationship is so she will be by his side at all times with the condition that he’d have her when and how he wants her; body and soul. Nothing but thorough, Gabe presents her with a contract that outlines everything he demands of their relationship. Ownership and possession, not emotion or intimacy with Gabe’s right to cancel at any time. The contract basically states that Mia will submit and cede all power to Gabe not only in the bedroom but in all aspects of their relationship. Mia knows that she is walking a fine line with not only her emotions but her heart. She agrees to sign the contract and so begins their journey of dysfunction.
“Hell, he’d all but mauled her. He’d raped her mouth, for God’s sake. He’d hurried her into his apartment, shoved her onto her knees and then forced himself down her throat. His self-loathing knew no bounds and yet he couldn’t regret it. Worse, he knew he’d do it again. And again.”
I went into Rush unaware that it would be Maya Bank’s knockoff of the well known Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy and sadly it was a huge disappointment. (I should have read the EW Article that stated Berkley Books had acquired a “Fifty Shades-esque” trilogy by Ms. Banks) Gabe Hamilton might as well be a clone of Christian Grey only he doesn’t have issues with touching or fucking. In fact that is all Gabe wants with Mia; a contract to fuck with a bit of kink thrown in for good measure. He’s cold, selfish, emotionless, and wants nothing but to own Mia’s body until he is sated and ends the contractual agreement. His desire for her has loomed for years yet he has no feelings for Mia other than obsession and possession. From the moment he initiated the contract of their relationship, I saw nothing but a cold-hearted bastard. Gabe has loving parents, no troubled past or abuse; only a messy divorce with his first and only wife. Yet he is void of emotion, calculated in getting his way and screw the consequences to anyone else.
“Made love. He wanted to laugh. That was a much softer term for what he’d done. Maybe he thought it in an attempt to make himself feel better. He’d fucked her senseless. He’d danced a very thin line in brutalizing her, and yet for all the remorse he felt, he knew that next time wouldn’t be any different no matter his intentions. He could say one thing all he wanted, but he was a damn liar and he knew it.”
The flow of the story lacks luster because it’s a continuous cycle of Gabe initiating rough sex with Mia, treating her like a whore, feeling remorseful in the moment, then repeating the behavior again. There is no romance that builds between the two. Their chemistry is all physical and frankly its hollow and unsexy. Mia frustrated me throughout the book because she was hot and cold with her emotions. One moment she is standing up to Gabe and then she is like a limp dishrag once he put his hands on her. The only real connection they had was through sex. At about the 70% mark I was ready to DNF the book after Gabe allowed a major violation to occur towards Mia. As the reader, I wanted to gag. If there was any evidence that Gabe had developed feelings for Mia, it was destroyed during that incident. The only reason I continued to the end was to see if Ms. Banks could work magic and deliver a believable happy ending for this couple and I’m sorry to say it did not happen. The only enjoyable part of the book was Jace and Ash’s characters. They both were fun, flirty and showed real emotion even though their time on the page was limited. Neither Jace nor Ash exhibited the harsh, asshole qualities that Gabe possessed.
If you are a lover of Fifty Shades and want a more mature, contracted version of a heartless relationship, this is your book. If you are like me and are over the Fifty Shades recreations and want romance with originality, then I suggest you quickly pass this one by.