I’m currently going through a few of my categories right now and I remember enjoying Beverly Bird’s category romance, Compromising Positions. Since then I’ve collected a few of her titles. Today I decided to tackle “Ten Ways To Win Her Man”, a Silhouette Romance written in 2001.
So, it’s a battle of wills. Danielle Dempsey Harrington is a corporate princess who’s looking forward to breaking ground on her new multi-million dollar resort on Gold Beach near the Pacific Ocean. Maxwell Padgett, an environmental lobbyist, has other plans for her resort, like having it never see the light of day because her resort would encroach on the habitat of his semipalmated palm plovers.
Like Danielle, I’d never heard of palm plovers. But according to Max, palm plovers are shorebirds that are bordering on extinction and Danielle’s resort threatens their nesting cycle. Max fails to convince her to stop the project in his first face to face meet with her so he moves on to plan B.
Despite differing views, the two are attracted to each other. Danielle is at a loss on how to attract and keep Maxwell’s attention so she enlists the help of her secretary and friend, Angelique to give her some tips. She tells her for starters, to ditch the suits and wear shorter skirts.
This advice proves effectual when Max alerts the media and stages a protest against her project. Danielle learns of the protest and immediately goes to squash the bad PR. She drops a bombshell of her own that leaves Max looking distracted by her new look.
Max proves to be a difficult catch for her and Danielle finds herself doing things out of her comfort zone and “not her style.” She’s discomfited and at a loss. She’s a CEO with a MBA who doesn’t know how to flirt or capture a man’s attention especially when it’s one-way. Danielle struggles because for the first time in her life she’s found someone she wants to keep. Only he doesn’t feel moved to reciprocate.
What she likes is that Max sees past the wealth and sees how lonely she is in her ivory tower. He calls her Dani to soften her up that she’s resistant to at first but then embraces the change. Which persona to keep? Danielle, the CEO and businesswoman or Dani, the woman who wants to be loved, have children and build a garden?
Max’s resistance to Dani’s attentions stems from his being a throwaway kid with no family structure or foundation. People have come and go in his life and it’s made an impression. He feels that nothing ever lasts and that he’s bound to just move on like all people do. He fears the worst and is nervous and scared of his feelings for Dani. He doesn’t want to hurt her.
So how did I like it? I loved it. The story was well written and smart. Great dialogue, too. Both characters act like adults and there’s actual character growth moreso with Dani than with Max. With Max it was almost like a light switch went off but it wasn’t a snap judgement in deciding his future either. He proved to be a formidable adversary and was very hard catch for Dani. But is he worth the effort?
Dani sheds the memories, the hurt, the pain, the fear and decides to live life by her rules and not those of her labor union father, who rarely spent anytime with her or her dead husband who was 26 years her senior who was more of a father figure than a husband. I liked Dani. She wasn’t afraid to go after what she wanted even if it meant doing stuff “not her style” or failing or humiliating herself. She proved to be resourceful , persistent and resilient. She knew when to walk away, too.
Ten Ways To Win Her Man was good read. The author wasn’t preachy with her “save the environment” message that was used as the major source of conflict. I won’t say how it was resolved either. I will say the author made me sympathetic to those shorebirds. If there were flaws, it wasn’t distracting enough to notice. Both characters were really likable and I came away thinking that their happy ending was well deserved. Categories don’t enjoy a long shelf life but this one should be easy to find used. If you see it, grab it. It’s a good story. B.
Up next is a Beverly Bird romantic suspense, “In the Line of Fire” dated 2002, Sil. Intimate Moments.