Rant, Review

Review: A Billion Times No by Kenzie Reed (2019)

Fake It Till You Make It, Book #1

Heat Factor: Sure, I guess 

Character Chemistry: Emotional chemistry? I’m not even convinced they had sexual chemistry.

Plot: Woman goes home for vacation, boss follows, and nobody talks to anybody about anything important so everything hits the fan

Overall: I finished this to satisfy my rage and for no other reason


The title really says it all, doesn’t it?

I picked up this book because it was a falling-for-my-billionaire-boss story, which is usually something that I would gobble up with a sort of guilty satisfaction. All I have to say is: This. Bitch.

Daisy Abernathy is going on a much needed vacation home after almost three years of working, like, 35-hour days every day of the week for her horrible boss who fires people for no reason. In the first chapter, she sasses Chase Lancaster, her boss, nonstop, and it’s that cute/gross (depending on how much you like this trope) hate-crush sort of foundation that has so much potential. She gets to be as insubordinate as she wants because she can’t be fired, and he finds her irresistible for it. I mean, how could anyone possibly not want to read this? (Don’t answer that.)

Anyway, Daisy goes home for a wedding – Tangent: Why do so many people attend ex-lover weddings in smut? Does that happen in real life? – and of course Chase follows her there and pays off her escort so he can pretend to be her boyfriend while he both wants to be her boyfriend and also needs to do some shady stuff for his shady AF dad. EVERYBODY KNOWS Chase’s dad is shady AF. AND YET…

Okay, so, there are a few things that enraged me about this book. 

Low-hanging fruit

Let’s start with some misogynistic BS in a chapter narrated from Chase’s POV: Chase says that his replacement assistant (for Daisy) is an ugly crier who needs to invest in waterproof mascara. 

Let’s add that Daisy’s mother treats her like a little baby girl who can’t adult. And assumes that proper ladies don’t swear. Or wear “revealing” shirts. 

Let’s also throw in a bunch of women being catty to each other over the absolutely disrespectful, garbage, unfaithful behavior of men. 

Oh, and also, men must request a father’s permission before proposing to a woman.

Just that, which might make me simply annoyed in another book, is a foundation for an escalation of nonsense that built and built until I was a ball of unrelieved rage. Everything that characters do on the stupid scale is in this book. 

Daisy doesn’t treat Chase well, but maybe that’s because she’s been treated poorly by everyone she grew up with for her whole life. 

1.No one respects Daisy. They still call her “Dais-aster”, and they all think this rude nickname is fine because they assume she’s still the woman she was before she went to college. When she tries to problem-solve they reject her ideas because she “brought the problem to town.” Like Chase’s shady dad wouldn’t have somehow been a garbage human all on his own without the nonexistent involvement of either Chase or Daisy

2. Daisy’s family is a Hot. Damn. Mess. 

  • Her sister is resentful that Daisy’s not around more AFTER SHE TOLD DAISY THAT HER HELP WASN’T NEEDED. 
  • Her mother is resentful that Daisy didn’t confide in her AFTER SHE ACTS LIKE SHE CAN’T HANDLE REAL LIFE OR HER ADULT DAUGHTERS BEING ADULTS.

3. Everybody–and I mean everybody in town, not just relatives–is all up in Daisy’s business because Chase needs to put a ring on it before sex is allowed. Excuse me, if you enter a house without permission checking up on two grown-ass adults, you have some serious boundary issues that are completely unacceptable.

So is it any wonder that Daisy and Chase’s relationship is fubar?

1.Chase is ordered by his father to follow Daisy, and he thinks something is fishy, so he goes to North Carolina to investigate and feeds his dad little nuggets as needed. Daisy realizes that Chase is up to something, but he won’t come clean with her about what it is. 

Um, hi, Daisy, you might be his trusted PA, but the owner of a billion-dollar company is not required to spill his guts on command just because you’ve got the hots for each other and you think this is work-related. He’s running a business and is not required to share information with a subordinate. Or a girlfriend. The combination of the two doesn’t mean added knowledge points. Trust him or don’t. 

2. Daisy says, multiple times to multiple people, that Chase is always honest and that when he expands the family’s resort and hotel business into new towns, it’s always good for the local economy. SO WHY THE HELL DOES DAISY SUDDENLY ASSUME THAT CHASE LOOKING INTO BUYING HER FAMILY’S HOTEL IS GOING TO BE BAD FOR HER TOWN? And then she runs around telling multiple people that she doesn’t trust him at all because he’s super shady. So that’s great.

3. After everything goes down with Chase’s dad, Daisy throws a fit and runs off (which, given how everyone in the town treated her, I think is totally legit) and assumes Chase is a dirtbag who abandoned her. ARE YOU FOR REAL RIGHT NOW? YOU AND THE ENTIRE TOWN TREAT A MAN LIKE TRASH, AND YOU THINK HE’S THE PROBLEM? And yeah, her sister deliberately misled her, but would it be too much to ask that Daisy stop making assumptions and ask some questions?


The way Daisy and her family treat Chase is not funny, and it’s not cute. It’s awful. And he’s super supportive of her while he’s there, so it’s like double garbage the way she treats him. 

I honestly cannot. The emotional relationship between these protagonists is miserable, and the “sexual chemistry,” which I would argue is non-existent because Daisy and Chase spend almost no time together on the page, does not make things better. Daisy knows Chase really well from working as his PA for almost three years, yet she doesn’t trust him for shit when it comes down to absolutely anything that occurs in her own home town. It would be one thing if Chase continued to be the unreasonable boss jerk who fires people for apparently no reason while he’s in North Carolina. But he’s not. He actually has something of a personality transplant. Or Daisy just hasn’t been paying attention for three years. Given the first couple of chapters, I’d say personality transplant.

I honestly do not understand, like, any of the decisions Chase and Daisy made. Their world is toxic. They don’t trust each other. They live in a space where they are not particularly cared for or respected. But instead of working through these backstories and coming together for something wonderful, Daisy is mean (really mean) to Chase, Chase withholds information from Daisy, and neither of them do a particularly good job of building trust or communicating with each other. When the end came, my head was spinning from trying to figure out how this relationship even functioned. 

A BILLION TIMES NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!


Buy Now: Amazon


Looking for something similar? (But maybe good instead of enraging)

Falling-for-my-boss stories

Billionaires

In her notes, Erin marked the mood as “stupid AF”, so if you want some of *that* energy, here are some more rants

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