She’s my boss, and she’s a stone-cold fox.
Two months ago, I lost my boat, my cat, and—with my leg in a cast—my income. Until I can walk again, the only job I’m fit for is one few have survived.
See, my new boss has a reputation. She's grumpy, no-nonsense, and runs a tight ship. Keeping a tight rein on a movie budget requires nerves of steel. Especially when disaster strikes.
When she yells at me, all I hear is the passion in her voice. All I want in those moments is to kiss her until she can't think straight.
And then convince her that it's okay to fall in love with me.
Fans of 1990's movies like Swimming with Sharks and Beautiful Girls will love this slow-burn, boss-assistant, entertainment biz, 1990’s office romance from USA Today bestselling author Karen Grey.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Oh my heart! Sully and Helen were PERFECT. I connect really well with Grey’s writing and characters which is why I continue to devour her books – but this is my absolute favorite of all her books. First, there are so many tropes & themes that I love: office romance, age gap, competent women and men who appreciate them for it, small town romance, found family and lots of laughs.” - Rellim Reads Blog
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Well I think I fell in love. A little with the characters, a lot more with their story. I mean, office romance and reverse age gap, I’m all for it. Add to that interesting characters, multiple references that speak to me, and some feminist talk, and I’m sold.” - Veroticker Blog
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Bursting with nineties pop culture references, complex characters, and delightful storytelling, Hold On To Me is a must-read romance!” – Goodreads review
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “This romance has all the feels, it’s romantic, and funny, and it's full of sizzling chemistry with wonderful characters you can’t help loving.” – Bookbub review
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Reading this is like immersing yourself in your favorite dramedy.” - Bookbub review
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “This slow-burn boss-assistant romance was filled with fun nostalgia in a heartfelt story, with down to earth characters, and loads of sexual tension leading to steamy passion!” - Bookbub review
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “A fun, swoony and chemistry-filled delight… I could not put this story down.” - Bookbub review
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Cats and dogs living together, this romance has it all! This slow-burn, age-gap, workplace romance is clever, funny, and absolutely heartwarming.” - Goodreads review
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “It’s time to bring out your boom boxes and mix CDs, we’re going back to the 90s.” - Bookbub review
I thought I was ready to face the consequences of my transgression. But when I settle into the chair, Raine’s deep groan is laced with anguish.
“I can’t believe you’d do this to me. Cheat on me. Again.”
“I know. What can I say? I have no self-control.”
A palm rises in the space between us. “Talk to the hand, darlin’. Talk to the hand.”
I take that hand and give it a tentative squeeze. “Do you forgive me?”
A return squeeze gives me hope, but the disgusted grunt that follows has me on tenterhooks again. I can’t live without Raine, but when you’re on the road, you have to do what you have to do. “It’s just that—”
Raine whips the chair around, and her hands grip its arms, flanking me. Dark brown irises ringing huge pupils sweep over my face. “Next time you have the urge, call me first. You can’t know how much it hurts me when you stray, honey .”
I nod, hopeful that we can move on from this. “Believe me, it’s worse for me. It just gets to the point when I can’t hold back. I’m away from home and you and—”
“And you just go and let any old woman—”
“Well, it was a man this time.”
There’s a long pause, and I hold my breath as Raine turns away. After what seems like an eon, sure hands snap the shiny black cape into the air. As it settles over me, I can finally breathe again.
“I’ll do my best. We’re doing color today, too, I assume?”
“If you think.”
“Oh, I think.”
“Right.” I nod, grateful that she seems to have forgiven me. “I’ve cleared my afternoon for you.”
“We’re gonna need it, sweet cheeks.”
After confirming that my hair is free of product, Raine preps to bleach my roots. Just as she dips a brush into the foul-smelling brew, my cellular phone rings from my bag.
She sighs. “You know I don’t like those things in here.”
“I do, but I’m crewing up for a new movie job, so I have a lot of calls out.”
She points at my briefcase. “You better take it now. Once I start with the bleach, I don’t want you putting that thing anywhere near your ear.”
“I’ll make it quick.”
“They say having it by your head all day will give you cancer,” she mutters.
I press the button to answer without taking her bait. “Helen O’Neill.”
“Hey, Helen. It’s Danielle Goodwin returning your call.” The young woman’s mellow accent is always a pleasure to hear, but I cut to the chase. “So, what do you think? Want to come back and work for me?”
“I’ll pay you whatever you need.”
“I’m sorry, Helen. I’ll be forever grateful to you for giving me a start, but I’m juggling four jobs as it is.”
“I guess it was too much to expect that you’d be free.”
Raine’s giving me the wrap-it-up finger circle, but I press on. “But if you let those four jobs go and come work for me, you could start moving up the ladder. The minute I get a line producer job, I’d hire you to be my UPM.”
Her tone makes it clear that I’m pushing my luck. “You’ve said you’re not interested, but you’re so smart and capable. We need more women like you in the producer pipeline. You could run circles around half the men I’ve worked for.”
“Helen,” she repeats, a hint of exasperation coloring her tone.
“All right, all right.” I know how to choose my battles as well as change tactics. “So... Any recommendations? What about that friend of yours?”
“The redhead. The high school teacher. I forget her name.”
“That’s it. What about her? I know I pay more than public school.”
“She’s got her own casting company now.”
“Dammit. All the smart women end up being their own bosses.”
“If I remember correctly, you’re the one who told us to do just that. About fifteen times,” she adds, the tease in her voice making me smile despite my disappointment.
Raine clears her throat dramatically.
“Listen, I’ve got to go, but if you think of anyone, let me know. And let’s get a drink while I’m in town.”