Baby Maker by P. Dangelico
Publication Date: February 20th, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Stella Donovan’s biological clock is a ticking time bomb.
The successful financial manager has spent her adult life building a career and neglecting her personal life. Problem is, she doesn’t believe in marriage. Not after watching her mother be treated like garbage by her father. Nope, marriage is not for her. All she wants is a baby. All she needs is a man to agree to her terms.
Dane Wylder, recently retired NFL tight end and future Hall of Famer, wants a baby.
Naturally, marriage is off the table. He’s not the marrying type. Women are great–as long as they’re trying to get into his bed and not his heart. But after years of living only for himself, he’s ready to be a father.
Sparks fly when a successful financial manager and a legendary football player enter into a legal agreement to have a kid together. They planned on everything–they just didn’t plan on each other.
Stella Donovan and Dane Wylder are both straight shooters. They live regimented lifestyles – ones with rules and order, holding on to absolutes instead of truly living fully in the present. And while their lives are vastly different, appearing as almost direct opposites in every way, there is one thing that they both want and for some reason in order to achieve their goal, they need one another…thus begins their legally binding contract of baby maker/baby daddy.
Neither Stella nor Dane are looking for love; in fact, they don’t believe in it and refuse to succumb to an emotion that has only ever caused them and those they love pain and heartache, but while P. Dangelico establishes that idea right from the start of Stella and Dane’s ‘arrangement,’ she also allows readers to see the ‘possibilities’ of what they could become if they bent their self-imposed rules and found a way to deal with the issues that keep their hearts from giving into what they seem to so desperately need.
The push/pull between Stella and Dane makes Baby Maker one heck of a slow burn romance; at times, the hero and heroine can barely tolerate one another. They get underneath each other’s skin so easily and they provoke the worst kind of reactions, responses that are uncharacteristic of the people they are, proving that there’s attraction and intrigue there even if they won’t readily admit to it.
P. Dangelico provides readers with enough of Stella and Dane’s backstories to truly understand why both of them aren’t ones to put themselves on the line for love. These two anticipate love’s fallout before anything can even be experienced, which proves just how terrified they are of making the same mistakes their parents did.
What I love most about Stella and Dane and their antagonistic relationship is that they force each other to see beneath the façades they outwardly portray. Stella may be uptight and overly concerned about money due to her childhood, but she’s also feisty and stubborn, which goes well with Dane’s laidback demeanor. With every interaction, they’re always pushing one another to their limits, but what’s most surprising is that those parameters seem to expand the closer they become and grow into the idea of an ‘us,’ which means that maybe Stella and Dane will take a risk on love that they never would have taken if this ‘Baby Maker Situation’ hadn’t brought them together.
I really enjoyed my first romance by P. Dangelico. Stella and Dane’s story was entertaining, heartfelt, and the perfect mix of angst and humor. I love that it was told in both their perspectives because it allows readers to see all sides of the situation and understand why both of them are hesitant to risk their heart on a concept that has done nothing but let me down in the past, and even though Stella and Dane do hit some bumps along the way to making a baby, the journey they take changes them in ways that give them hope for their future – one that they both deserve!
4.5 Poison Apples
Grabbing the pot of freshly brewed coffee from the coffee maker, he stares into the pot then drinks from it. I don’t bother to tell him it’s decaf. Throat working as he swallows, he holds up his index finger.
I’ve got a finger for him, the middle one.
“I don’t know what’s gotten into you but I’ve had enough.” He continues drinking. “And word of caution, if you come back to New York and continue to treat me like I’m cattle, a possession, you will damage this friendship beyond repair.”
He places the pot down, his eyes downcast as he leans on the counter for support. “I’m sorry…I was a real asshole last night and–“
“Last night?!” I shout. “How about for the past week.”
“Well you’re not helpin’ the situation!” he shouts back, his eyes sparking, then winces again.
My jaw hangs in disbelief. He can’t be serious. Is he really blaming me?
“The hell are you talking about? You’re blaming me? Me?! You’ve been unbearable–when you’ve been around, that is. Usually you’re running in the opposite direction. But somehow in your twisted little male peanut sized brain, it’s my fault?!”
“Yes, goddamit! Dancin’–smilin’ at that fucking cowboy!” His hand slashes through the air as if he’s indicating to someone in the corner. The veins near his temple pop up. Eyes impossibly wide, he advances on me, stopping a mere foot away. “You never smile at me like that!”
Huh? “What does that have to do with anything?!”
“Because I’m jealous! Okay! And you’ve made it very clear you’re not attracted to me but all I can think about is this!”
He’s on me before I can blink, arms crushing me to him, kissing me like I hold the last breath of air on the planet and he means to steal it.
A beat later he stops. His lips against mine he murmurs, “Kiss me back…please kiss me back.”
Meet P. Dangelico
Dangelico loves romance in all forms, cuddly creatures (four legged and two), really bloody sexy pulp, the NY Jets (although she’s reconsidering after this season), and to while away the day at the barn (apparently she does her best thinking shoveling horse crap). What she’s not enamored with is referring to herself in the third person and social media so don’t expect her to get on Twitter anytime soon. Oh, and although she was born in Italy, she’s been Jersey Strong since she turned six.
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