Finished February 18
Do Not Disturb by Tilly Bagshawe
This romance novel has a lot going on, including some suspense. As the book begins, Honor Palmer has called a formal meeting to transfer management of her father's assets to herself as his dementia makes him unable to do it himself. It is not a smooth transfer, as her father Trey seems to have grown more and more attached to the idea that women don't have business skills and doesn't want her to take the management of the family hotel from him. Her socialite sister Tina doesn't mind as long as she gets a nice allowance as a result.
Meanwhile Lucas Ruiz has fought his way up from poverty in Ibiza, and with the financial help of a well-off lover has graduated from a prestigious hotel management program. Now he is fighting for a dream job at a luxury hotel, a step towards his ultimate goal of owning his own hotel chain. When he succeeds, he also gains a few enemies and finds that not all doors in upper society circles are open to him despite his charm. When Anton Tisch, his hotel's owner's, ambitions pits him directly in competition with Honor's family hotel in East Hampton, the sparks really begin to fly.
We see a lot of very driven characters here, from diverse backgrounds. Lucas cares for his mother despite her weaknesses, but is a player in his personal life, who doesn't treat women all that well. Honor is driven to prove her skills in revitalizing the family hotel, but is naive in her personal life. She both cares about her sister and resents her lifestyle. Lucas has an unlikely friend, who comes from a wealthy family, Ben Slater. Ben is a low-key man with a romantic side and strong sense of ethics. He is good as his job in finance, but isn't skilled with relationships.
The Carter family is a conservative, but wealthy family in East Hampton. Devon plays a role in society and his church that doesn't align with his personal life, and he seems to care more about appearances than other people. His wife is lonely and insecure despite her beauty. His daughter Lola is also driven, focused on a fashion design career despite her father's expectations. She knows how to use her assets to get what she wants, most of the time. Lola's brother Ned is a good talker, but doesn't seem to accomplish as much as he says, and isn't willing to work for it.
Honor's sister Tina also knows how to use her assets, and she can turn any bad situation to her advantage. Her activities are definitely not okay with the conservative set, but she doesn't take herself too seriously.
Sian Doyle is driven towards becoming a journalist, despite her working class mill town background, and she is willing to work hard to get there. She is lucky in the people she meets that give her opportunities, but it is her hard work that brings her success.
On the darker side, Anton motivations aren't always clear, but his competitiveness is extreme, giving him the drive to win whatever it takes.
Lots of sex, dirty deeds, and society viciousness is here, along with the romance and suspense.