REVIEW: The Personal Touch by Lori Borrill
Dear Ms. Borrill:
I have to confess that I had gotten used to your “ordinary people” romance and expected this one to be within that oevre. I did not read the blurb, but bought this on author name alone.
Clint Hilton has it all and I do mean all. He is mega rich (from being one of the biggest builders in LA); he is drop dead gorgeous (thanks to his parents); he is smooth (from all the practice he’s had playing the field). The longest he’s gone without sex has been about three weeks. Self sacrifice and failure aren’t in Clint Hilton’s vocabulary. The problem is that Clint’s mother lives with him and refuses to get her own home because she’s just not ready for that since his father died. Clint’s secretary, Carmen, gives him the name of Margot Roth, a relationship counselor and one of the best matchmakers in Hollywood.
Margot isn’t really a matchmaker but she does help individuals search for the cause of their relationship issues and pair them up with other clients. Clint’s mother, Jillian, is totally against matchmakers so Clint offers to pay Margot five times her regular rate in order for her to engage in a little subterfuge with Jillian. Margot is to have dinner with Clint and Jillian as many times as it will take to convince Jillian, I guess, to fall in love with someone and move out of Clint’s home. (Yes, Clint is an overweaning ass in that he doesn’t want his mom to be happy, he just wants to her to get the hell out of his house so he can have uncomplicated sex again and apparently for all his dough, can’t take a weekend at the Ritz).
Clint falls for Margot right away. In a weird twist, Clint kind of believes in love at first sight. Perhaps all his catting around town was because he wasn’t struck by the love lightning, only the sex lightning. The sex between Margot and Clint is very hot but it only exemplified what I thought was a huge power imbalance between Margot and Clint.
Margot was essentially helpless in the face of Clint. She wasn’t able to show any resistance to any of his machinations. Up until the very end, was completely spineless when it came to Clint even though she was supposed to be an insightful counselor. Further, Margot has a crisis of confidence when one of her relationships goes bad, suggesting that her techniques for pairing people up were flawed yet she never once speaks to her mentor and business partner about it.
I felt that Clint was a basically selfish person and that he never really learned any lesson in the story. The image I got from him was that as long as it was in his self interest to make someone happy, that person would be happy. He did go out of his way to make Margot happy. He went to a flea market with her. He took interest in her life, her work, her family.
There were so many issues that I thought were raised but never explored such as Clint’s reaction to his father’s death and his emotional distance with his family. Instead we were inundated at how great Clint was. In the end, the romance between Clint and Margot rested heavily on Clint always being in love with Margot. If you believe in that, then you can buy into the HEA. If you thought that Clint would wander at anytime, Margot’s happiness would be toast. C