Reasons why I had exterminate this inappropriate crush on Derek. 1) He was frighteningly ambitious. 2) He was my boss. Sort of. 3) He was a workaholic. As a boyfriend or whatever, that would drive me crazy. 4) He was void of emotion, lacking in empathy and kinda mean.
All the above seem like good reason for Maya Kirkwood to avoid Derek Whitley but for some reasons she can’t stop thinking about him. Their first meeting was not a good one considering she lied about her name and he told her he didn’t like her work. Of course she didn’t think she would ever see him again and he didn’t know she was the artist. Even though he might not like her work Derek recognized the appeal and hired her to design a piece for the new wing of his company building.
Maya has a troubled past and is living under another identity. She cannot be honest about who she is for fear her past will take over her present. She was run out of New York and the fashion industry when her boyfriend sabotaged her work. But now in order to move on with her present she must admit to who she really is.
Once Maya does an interview to display new work things start to happen. Her father suddenly appears back in her life. She hasn’t seen him in many years and has no desire to see him now.
He betrayed both her and her mom causing her mom to commit suicide. She also finds out that he knew her mom had committed suicide but he didn’t come back for her and she was just a girl.
With her father back in her life, her real name is revealed and Derek is able to find out who she is. Maya now wonders if he believes that she isn’t out for his company or someone who would steal and sell trade secrets.
Unmasking Maya is a short read that is more chick lit than it is romance. There is a vibe of sexual tension going on through the book but because the story is just done from Maya’s view we don’t get much from Derek. In fact, we get next to nothing from him. He doesn’t express emotions and avoids any personal question Maya asks him.
Towards the end we find out that Derek is a widower and his wife died in a car wreck. In a pivotal moment Derek says his wife’s name instead of Maya’s bringing an abrupt halt to any sexy times we might have experienced.
I felt there were some things left unexplained or left open. I never really understood the point to Maya’s dad showing up. Was it just to allow Derek to learn her real name? And we never were told why Maya’s boyfriend stole from her and sold her out. He had this elaborate plot and I wasn’t sure why. The book ended with a HEA but I almost feel like there should be more. Like I want to know where Derek and Maya go from here and what the repercussions of them being together would be. Derek is a high-profile man and Maya has always wanted to be low profile.
Overall it was a quick, feel good read. I recommend if you are looking for something fun and light. The banter between Maya and Derek has some lol moments that will make you really like them. Final grade- B-
“Since you made this wonderful breakfast, I will do the dishes.”
But Derek was having none of that. He stood up and took the plates from me. “I’ve got a dishwasher. And I don’t want you messing things up by loading it wrong.”
“Obsessive compulsive freak. I elbowed him in the ribcage.
“Artsy fartsy flake,” was his reply.