BOOK REVIEW: Made in Manhattan by Lauren Layne

BOOK REVIEW: Made in Manhattan by Lauren LayneMade in Manhattan by Lauren Layne
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
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Violet Townsend has always been a people pleaser. Raised in the privileged world of Upper East Side Manhattan, she always says the right things, wears the right clothes, and never rocks the boat. Violet would do anything for the people closest to her, especially her beloved grandmother. So when she asks Violet to teach the newly-discovered grandson of her friend how to fit in with New York City’s elite, Violet immediately agrees. Her goal? To get Cain Stone ready to take his place as heir to his family company…but to say he’s not exactly an eager student is an understatement.

Born and raised in rural Louisiana and now making his own way in New Orleans, Cain Stone is only playing along for the paycheck at the end. He has no use for the grandmother he didn’t know existed and no patience for the uppity Violet’s attempts to turn him into a suit-wearing, museum-attending gentleman.

But somewhere amidst antagonistic dinner parties and tortured tux fittings, Cain and Violet come to a begrudging understanding—and the uptight Violet realizes she’s not the only one doing the teaching. As she and Cain begin to find mutual respect for one another (and maybe even something more), Violet learns that blindly following society’s rules doesn’t lead to happiness…and that sometimes the best things in life come from the most unexpected places.


Romance lovers will passionately fall in love with Made in Manhattan!  It had a fun and flirty vibe, while also pulling on my emotions.  The story was impossible to put down and easily became an instant favorite!  If you love an opposites attract adult romance then I can’t recommend this book enough!

Could she take this angry, uncouth man and turn him into someone who held his own in a boardroom? Who could navigate the sticky intricacies of the New York social set?
Who could not only tie a tie, but look good in it?
Suddenly she wanted to try, rather desperately.

Cain Stones learned that he had a grandmother he never knew about, along with a billion dollar company that she wanted him to take over.  Coming from the South, he needed to learn the city, dress the part and work on getting voted in as CEO.  And Violet Townsend was to help Cain achieve that goal.  Their grandmothers were best friends and there was nothing Violet wouldn’t do to help Edith, Cain’s grandma.

Violet had the sudden urge to tell him he was wrong.
She didn’t always get what she wanted.
She didn’t even know what that was.

Violet Victoria Townsend lived on the upper east side and I absolutely loved her.  She was kind, helpful and held herself in almost a regal way.  She dressed the part, had impeccable manners, was a thoughtful hostesses and always seemed to say the right thing.  She definitely gave me Charlotte from Sex and the City vibes, who I adored.  Violet could be seen with Keith, who was a blue blood like her, except I thought he was beyond pretentious. So when Cain stepped into her life, Violet’s seemingly perfect world completely changed.

Cain shrugged and bent down to gently rub Coco’s head with a knuckle. Violet ordered her heart not to melt. Or to think about the fact that Keith barely tolerated her dog’s existence, much less pet the little Yorkie.

 Cain was the ultimate book boyfriend.  Yes he was a little rough around the edges and had no filter on his mouth sometimes, but oh my goodness was the man swoon worthy.  Not only in the way he held himself and talked, but his actions literally melted my heart into a puddle.  Whether he was being thoughtful of Violet’s dog Coco, who he called Toto, or remembering details from what Violet said, Cain was most definitely more then others in Violet’s world would see at first glance.  Cain was sexy, seductive, charismatic, and I was obsessed.

His smile was slow. Predatory. He moved even closer until she could feel his body heat. “Careful, Duchess. Look at me that way again, and you’ll be the one who’s handled, and not the least bit gently.”

Violet and Cain started out rough.  Yes there was an instant attraction and chemistry between them, but Violet was trying to change who Cain was.  And he fought her every step of the way.  It started with a clothing makeover and went from there.  But Cain wasn’t the only one who started to change. Violet found herself changing too.  She kept her emotions guarded and always came across as composed and together.  But Cain pushed her time and again and invoked emotions from her that had me clinging to every single word between them!

“Keith can be . . .” She sighed. “He’s struggling. He’s put a lot of himself into the company, and it’s hard for him to have an outsider come in and take a position he thinks should be his.”
Cain’s eyes flicked up for the briefest of moments. “That’s not what he should be possessive of.”
Violet didn’t reply. Couldn’t. But neither did she look away.

Their moments together brimmed with delicious sexual tension and banter.  Whether it was a look, a touch or a barbed word, everything had an undercurrent of electricity running through it.  And there were so many moments that held such powerful emotions.  Like the piano scene.  I didn’t know whether to laugh and smile or cry tears of heartache.  This book toyed with my emotions in the best ways possible!  There was some steam in the pages and by the end of this story I found myself with tears in my eyes.

“You deserve it.”
“What, to learn piano?” she joked.
He didn’t smile back. “All of it. You deserve to have everything you want, Duchess.”

Made in Manhattan was beautifully emotional and seductive.  It had characters that were larger then life, a story-line that I devoured way too quickly and even side characters that constantly made me feel.  This book became a top favorite so easily and I can’t wait to read it again and again in the future!

*I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book, provided by the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.*

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  1. Tanya @ Girl Plus Books

    Calling a man the ultimate book boyfriend… those are weighty words! 🙂 It’s been a couple years since I’ve read anything by Lauren Layne but she’s always had a way with writing great swoon-worthy heroes.
    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Most Anticipated Releases | First Half of 2022My Profile

    • Jen

      Right?! So weighty lol! But while I don’t make a lot of time for re-reads, this is definitely one of them that I will re-read! Cain was everything!

  2. Sophie

    That seems a very good one!
    Sophie recently posted…Top Ten Books I want to read the first half of 2022 . Top Ten TuesdayMy Profile

    • Jen

      Sooooo good! It’s going on my favorites list for this year!

  3. Sam@wlabb

    I also loved this book! Violet broke my heart when she showed her emotions about feeling left. That’s why this union was so important to me, and yes, Cain was a great book boyfriend.
    Sam@wlabb recently posted…Can’t Wait Wednesday!My Profile

    • Jen

      Yayyyyy! Oh my goodness me too! It was impossible to stop the tears and emotion. I’m so happy you loved this book so much too!

  4. claire @ clairefy

    I’ve never heard of this book before, but I’m so glad that you enjoyed it! 🙂 I love the cover too. I’ve been looking for some fun/light reads recently, so I might have to pick this up in 2022.
    claire @ clairefy recently posted…2022 is ours.My Profile

    • Jen

      Lauren Layne writes books that seep into your heart and soul. So many of them are my favorites and this one would be a fabulous one to add to your tbr!

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