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REVIEW: The Tycoon’s Secret by Kasey Michaels

Dear Ms. Michaels,

I was tempted to go back and read this part of the “Gifts from a Billionaire” series after loving Leslie LaFoy’s “The Money Man’s Seduction.”
It’s fast, it’s funny and, though I wish some aspects of the book had been explored in greater depth, so far I’m 2 for 2 in liking this series.

Sam Balfour has watched his billionaire Uncle Ned give away money for years now. Each year Uncle Ned searches the Internet and media for people who seem to be doing good in the world then he gifts them with an anonymous check for $50,000 and then watches what they do with the money. If they take the money and run, as do most of the recipients, then that’s all. If they use the gift to continue to help others, then they receive a further check at the end of that year for a tax free $1,000,000.

Sam dislikes the whole procedure, not because he’s pissed that family money is flying the coop, but because over the years fewer and fewer recipients do the right thing which depresses his Uncle – though it doesn’t dissuade Ned from continuing to do it. And despite confidentiality clauses, word is getting out about what’s going on making it even harder to find suitable recipients.

This year, they’re 3/18 and Sam decides to increase his arguments to stop the whole thing. Only Uncle Ned is having none of it. He’s got one more person to gift and a surprise for Sam. Uncle Ned might be getting older but he’s still got what it takes to get his nephew to do what he wants and what Uncle Ned wants is for Sam to hand over the last money himself. No arguments, no fussing, no wiggling out of it.

And so the last gift is to go to Paige Halliday of Halliday’s Hollidays – a design business run by Paige. Sam is immediately attracted to this female dynamo and makes plans to seduce her if she’s willing. But, when he chose Paige, did Uncle Ned have something different in mind besides looking for a do-gooder? And will Sam and Paige play along with his holiday schemes?

Pros: The book is funny, has well drawn characters, and for the most part those characters know what’s going on. Paige is quite aware that Sam is trying to seduce her and when she succumbs to seduction, it’s with her eyes open and knowing full well what she’s doing. They enjoy their physical relationship with no strings attached and when things get emotionally deeper, they’re ready to trust each other. While the progression of the romance is quick, you include some references to long phone calls and having them get to know each other.

Cons: Both Paige and Sam have some issues from their childhoods. While I like that you don’t have them wallow around in these issues, pouring angst and ashes over their own heads for endless pages, I don’t like that the issues aren’t really addressed much either. I know that seems contradictory but since these issues are supposed to affect how Sam views the money give away and be such a large part of what Paige does with her money gift, I would like for them to have been explored in just a little more depth.

Still, this is a book I enjoyed overall and seems to be a nice wrap up to the series. Now I plan to go back and check out the other two books – yeah for ebooks still being available at the eharlequin site! B


This book can be purchased at Amazon or in ebook format from Sony or other etailers.

Another long time reader who read romance novels in her teens, then took a long break before started back again about 15 years ago. She enjoys historical romance/fiction best, likes contemporaries, action- adventure and mysteries, will read suspense if there's no TSTL characters and is currently reading very few paranormals.


  1. Amanda
    Jul 09, 2009 @ 09:15:02

    I went back and read The Money Man’s Seduction just last week (which I loved) and picked up this one too because it continued the Gifts from a Millionaire. I am amazed at how much Desire authors can pack into 198 pages. There were some really cute elements in this story that Michaels pulled off without being saccharine. And I thought Sam and Paige’s banter was quite good.

    Agree about the backstory angst. I thought Paige’s past especially was glossed over, though in a way I thought that was indicative of the fact that she had overcome it. The past was angsty but she wasn’t (if that makes any sense.) All in all, a short fun read. I’m really enjoying my foray into Silhouette Desire land.

  2. Jayne
    Jul 09, 2009 @ 09:20:13

    I'm really enjoying my foray into Silhouette Desire land.

    The “Desire” line isn’t one I’d looked at much before. It just seemed too much like the “Presents” but with American asshole billionaires. Now I’m starting to check it out. One thing though, has anyone else noticed that a sizable number of the heroines on the “Desire” line covers wear gold colored dresses? What’s with that?

  3. Amanda
    Jul 09, 2009 @ 09:37:14

    Yeah, this is really my first time getting into categories and I’ve found *Desire* and *Silhouette Special Edition* to be my go to lines. I am kind of afraid to try a Presents.

    Have you tried Catherine Mann’s Desire books? Her heroes, while wealthy, aren’t asshole billionaires. Or rather they are more than billionaires. One is a veternarian. One is an Air Force investigator. One is a politician. One is a lawyer. There is some overlap between her series. One features a trio of foster sisters who run a B&B in Charleston. One features a quartet of brothers who are sons of a female Senator. The order, as far as I can tell is: Baby I’m Yours, Under the Millionaire’s Influence, Rich Man’s Fake Fiancee and His Expectant Ex. Two of the brothers’ stories are still to come.

    I have noticed the yellow gowns on the Desire covers. I guess they make a good contrast with the red? I was flipping channels the other night and there was a shot of George Clooney, I think in one of the Ocean’s movies. He was in a predominantly red room, and the shot seemed to have been taken right from a Desire cover.

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