The heart remembers.
When Aidan Bishop staggers out of the woods, naked and suffering from amnesia, he needs to relearn who he is and where he fits in the world.
His boss, nearly five-hundred-year-old dragon Nassim, head of a successful tech company, hurries to claim his wayward assistant and guide him back into the life he disappeared from. As they get to know each other again, Aidan wonders if their relationship went deeper than employer and employee. But Nassim isn’t telling, and Aidan has a secret of his own… even if he doesn’t know it yet.
Content Warnings: Amnesia, mentions of drowning, mentions of murder, blackmail, gunfight, characters get shot (on page), sexual situations
*A copy of this was provided via A Novel Take PR
The book starts the moment Aidan becomes aware of his surroundings and realizes that he lost his memories. He can remember basic things, like what a pine or maple tree are or the sound of thunder. But memories like his name, where he is and where he has been all his life are gone. Completely erased.
Aidan had been missing a week when he stumbles out of the forest behind an office building – his workplace, as he later finds out.
I read The Dragon CEO’s Assistant in (almost) one sitting and only put it aside because of such trivial things like work. From the moment Aidan steps out of the woods I was completely immersed in his story. The mystery around who he was, why he had lost his memories and how he fit into everything was especially interesting.
I really enjoyed how we got to explore everything along with Aidan – who is pretty much starting over again. He didn’t even recognize his apartment, but then instinctually knows how to make coffee. That dichotomy really kept me glued to my Kindle, turning the pages as fast as I could. Besides all the seriousness of losing your memory, Burke sprinkled a good dose of humor into her story. Particularly Aidan’s inner monologues and sarcasm had me laughing out loud a couple of times; for example the moment he realizes he’s gay.
He wandered down the hall, stretching, only to freeze midextension at the sight of Nassim on his knees, his ass in the air as he searched a bottom cupboard for something. The image of round, muscular buttocks, firm handfuls under the thin heather-gray sweatpants, with no underwear lines to mar the fabric, made his mouth go dry. And his groin tingle.
“I’m gay,” he breathed.
“What?” Nassim jerked up and smacked his head into the top of the cupboard. Curses in a language Aidan didn’t know spewed from his lips. It didn’t make him any less hot.
Oh my God. “Just—just a second.”
Aidan raced back down the hall and into his bedroom and skidded to a stop in front of the desk. Breathing hard, he wrote another line in his notebook.
I’m gay. Really, really gay. Oh my God, that ass.
From the moment he stumbles out of the woods Aidan feels comfortable with and around Nassim – who happens to be his boss. The feeling of familiarity is something he can’t explain to himself and Nassim’s reluctance to share information with him isn’t helpful either.
To be honest I didn’t know what to think of Aidan in the second third of the story. He seemed like a really great guy: optimistic, loyal, funny and never at a loss for words. But because of the amnesia I didn’t know if I could trust him wholeheartedly or if perhaps he was hiding something that he didn’t remember anymore.
Nassim on the other hand immediately felt like a character I could trust? I can’t put it into words, but just like Aidan I instantly felt comfortable with him too. Though, since the story is only told from Aidan’s point of view, we only get his impression on things. So because we only find out things as he does there’s a bit of a mystery around Nassim as well. Which definitely was part of the reason why I could not put this book away.
While there is an almost instant attraction for Aidan to Nassim, this book isn’t heavy on the romance. However I don’t think that took anything away from the story. On the contrary, there is already so much going on in the story with Aidan’s amnesia, that there is just no time for a lot of loving. I appreciated how the relationship progressed slowly and how Burke gave Aidan enough room to find himself again.
The world-building is something I’ve come to really appreciate in all of Burke’s books with the Not Dead Yet series and this one definitely being my faves. She perfectly blended the fantasy aspect of the story with the real world. I could just see myself travelling to Canada to knock on Aidan and Nassim’s door to ask if we could go flying together. (With Nassim in his dragon form.)
Burke knows how to reveal just enough to keep us guessing, but also not revealing too much at once. I felt like I was constantly fed breadcrumbs so to speak, without satisfying my hunger to find out more until the big reveal happens. And the reveal being something I was so not expecting but looking back it perfectly fits with everything we learn throughout the story.
The Dragon CEO’s Assistant is a lovely blend of mystery and fantasy elements that I wholeheartedly recommend.
Jenn is the author of The Gryphon King’s Consort from Dreamspinner Press and the co-author of the critically acclaimed Chaos Station science fiction romance series (with Kelly Jensen) from Carina Press. She’s also the author of Her Sexy Sentinel, a paranormal romance from Entangled Publishing.
She’s been called a pocket-sized and puntastic Canadian on social media, and she’ll happily own that label. Jenn lives just outside of Ottawa, Ontario, with her husband and two kids, plus two dogs named after video game characters…because her geekiness knows no bounds.
Genre: Contemporary Genre: Urban Fantasy Orientation: Bisexual Orientation: Gay Pairing: M/M Publisher: Dreamspinner Press Review Tag: Amnesia Tag: Magic Tag: Part of a series Tag: PoC Tag: Soulmates Golden Kingdom series Jenn Burke The Dragon CEO's Assistant