Title: Office Mate
Author: Katie Ashley
Publisher: Self Published
Publication Date: 8 July 2018
Synopsis from Goodreads
From the first time I played army as a kid, the military has been my life. As an Airborne Major, I’d led my men through two tours in Afghanistan. But when my father was elected president, I became an even greater target for the enemy—a prize for someone to take out. To ensure not only the safety of myself, but of my men, I got stripped of my cammies, shoved into an Armani suit, and placed into a management position at my father’s company. After years of trekking through the desert with an assault rifle, I was way out of my area of expertise, which my transition coordinator was more than happy to let me know on a daily, if not hourly basis. The brunette bombshell would be the death of me in more ways than one, especially since I hadn’t been with a woman since my last deployment. She’s turning out to be one of the greatest foes I’ve ever done battle with.
In the backwoods Georgia town, I was born in, you either married right out of high school or got the hell out of town. I chose the second and never looked back. After graduating top in my class, I started working for The Callahan Corporation. Fast forward five years and I was about to become the youngest female manager in the history of my department. And then all the blood, sweat, and tears I’d put into my career was for nothing when the boss’s billionaire son was handed my position on a silver platter. Not only that, I was expected to help transition him into the job that was supposed to be mine. Sure, he’s easy on the eyes with his chiseled good-looks and impossibly built physique, but I’m not going to let that distract me. I hope soldier boy is good at military strategy because sabotage is the name of the game I’ll be playing.
It took me awhile to connect the characters to Running Mate but when I did all the pieces fell into place. You see Thorn is the older brother of Barrett (Running Mate) a career military man forced into giving up his career due to his fathers position in the White House; his only consolation is knowing he isn’t a liability to his team. Thorn is struggling with the re-adjustment to civilian life and floundering in the direction he wants to take his professional life. Following an intervention by his well-meaning family, Thorn finds himself in investment banking and usurping Isabel of her promotion.
Isabel has poured her heart and soul into her career, putting her personal life on hold until she reaches the position she has worked so hard for. Unfortunately, things take an unexpected turn with the appearance of Thorn and nepotism working at its best, no matter that Thorn is actually qualified for the position.
Thorn and Isabel get off to a very rocky start exasperated by hot coffee and a compromising position!!!! Things deteriorate from there thanks to Thorn’s determination to deny his attraction to Isabel by being a complete duckhead to her.
As the story progresses vulnerabilities are exposed on both sides creating a completely different tone to the beginning of Office Mate. I adored seeing the softer side of Thorn and Isabel as they got to know each other better. Despite her career drive, Isabel is highly empathetic and compassionate. It is this quality that is the breaking point for Thorn and his attempts to maintain a professional demeanor with Isabel.
With very little in the way of angst, Office Mate runs smoothly with a whole lot of dreamy mixed in 😍💝💞