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Publisher's Summary

An Amazon Charts best seller.

From USA Today best-selling author L.J. Shen comes a second-chance romance about love, loss, finding yourself, and getting lost in the right person.

Maddie Goldbloom stitched up a plan to ensure everything in her life was perfect - from a career in fashion to a chic NYC apartment to a pediatrician boyfriend.

When her ex, Chase Black, storms back into her life with an outrageous request, her immediate reaction is to refuse him. But he only wants to fulfill his father’s last wish. So even though he’s the man who broke her heart, playing his fiancée shouldn’t be hard, especially if it means she gets to watch the arrogant devil squirm a bit.

What ensues is a chain of events that detonates Maddie’s life - and when Chase’s walls come down, they both are forced to face reality.

They say keep your enemies close. But what if your enemy is also the man you love?

©2021 L.J. Shen (P)2020 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Devil Wears Black

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

More like penelope ward and vi keeland story

This lacks the lj shen storyline... More like Vi keeland storyline... Although i love them both. Still it seems a miss.

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  • CAROLYN 🔹🔹🔹🔹🔹🔹
  • 15-03-21

SORRY, BUT FOR ME IT WAS A LUKEWARM LISTEN

I usually love love love L.J. Shen’s romances.. but this one is difficult to review because yes, it was ok, but it didn’t wow me. I didn’t feel any chemistry, any sizzles or any sparks between the couple in this prolonged second-chance. But there was a lot of imbalances in the relationship between wealthy Playboy Chase and Maddie - the woman he dumped months earlier because “he doesn’t do commitment”. Maddie was trying to move on with someone new.. but, when Chase asked for a ‘fake fiancé’ favor to cheer up his family and dying Dad, what else could Maddie do but say yes.

However the plan has pitfalls, drama from secondary characters, fireworks and emotional friction when Maddie realizes her heart is once again going to get shattered. There was a lot of ‘friend zoning’ right up until near the end when they both felt they could trust each other enough to reveal their true feelings. But I didn’t feel the romance worked as Maddie had her walls up high and kept her new boyfriend hanging on while she was ‘faking it’ with Chase.. and Chase absolutely wasn’t looking for anything long-term with Maddie.. or anyone else. And a heads up warning that there’s death from Cancer too which plummets the mood. The dual POV narration was good.. but, IMO, Sebastian York should never be allowed to do another Scottish accent again.

Worth a credit? I’d preordered this because I love L.J Shen’s books and I do love a good ‘fake’ relationship too.. however for me, this romance didn’t work until the end.. and by that time it was just too little too late. So instead of a yay.. it’s sadly just a ”meh” nay this time.

16 people found this helpful

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  • Eileen
  • 09-03-21

The Devil Wears Black

I was very disappointed in this book.

Had trouble relating to the characters. Both the h and H had a compelling back story; but it never seemed to really get going.

The writing style was too quirky for my taste. This was nothing like any LJ Shen book I have read before. Would have liked more character development and steam.

The narration was excellent as always with Sebastian York and Ava Erickson.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Heather
  • 10-03-21

I liked this.

I went into this blind, not even reading the summary, and while I really enjoyed this story I can't help but feel like it fell short of Shen's other books 🤷‍♀️ something just missing imo.
Anyway! 👏 Wow what a messed up ride it was despite my previous sentiments! This definitely had a different spin on the whole fake relationship/second chance trope.
Poor Julian, he just needs a hug and a slap upside the head. 🤣

6 people found this helpful

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  • P.J.
  • 06-05-21

Who Wants a Man with Filthy Thoughts

Really folks? The story line could be okay except for the fact that the male character can only think crud sexual thoughts about the female character. Should I have ever encountered someone who had these thoughts of me, I'd run away! Little do we see any admiration for Maddie's qualities - her thought processes, her wit, her talent in designing, or just her as a human being. Instead it's all about the sexual thoughts about her (and they are not tender and sweet, rather it's rough) and how horribly he believes she dresses. And WHY? Why would any woman want a man who (pardon the language) just wants to knock her up against a wall and bang her?

A man and a woman can have a love/hate relationship that turns into love but surely it's not just all about crude sex. Yes, there needs to be chemistry, but hopefully not in such a crude thought process. Unfortunately, I can' enjoy the story because the filthy sexual innuendo just keeps getting more and more. I'm not a prude and I understand the use of sexual scenes but I just don't see Chase's thoughts as sensual or sexy.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Desire Oosthuizen
  • 10-03-21

Author + Narrators = Perfection

The book was so good, I listened to it all in one go, I didn’t want to take a break!

The Author and Narrators is one of the best combinations. This book was spectacular, and thanks to the excellent narration I am going to miss these characters now that the book is done, they felt like my friends!

3 people found this helpful

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  • M.Ghorm
  • 18-03-21

Love Shen, but this was my LEAST favorite

It pains me to give such a poor review because Shen is an auto-purchase for me and typically garners at least 4 stars. This was by far the worst Shen book I’ve read. It just felt like a swing/miss. The characters weren’t very likable and therefore none of them had chemistry with each another. Not just the main characters but all the supporting ones as well. All felt a bit shallow (personality and context). Between the couple, Very little love, courtship, or sex. I was seriously tempted to not finish several times and now that I didn’t I am not sure my world/opinion would have changed if I had just stopped. If you like this book- great. If you have any urges to DNF, trust me you can stop and not miss anything (well except the loss of a credit). 😞

2 people found this helpful

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  • Emily Huber
  • 11-03-21

Another fantastic book!

I lover this book. L.J. Shein never disappoints. The narrators did a fantastic job as usual.

2 people found this helpful

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  • B. Roscoe
  • 24-03-21

Wonderful! Chase & Maddie’s Fake Fiancée Story ...

Wonderfully Written! Chase & Maddie’s Slow Burn Is A Fake Fiancée Story Steeped In Heated Chemistry. It Is About Cold Hearts & Second Chances. Egotistical Chase Black Is Not Happy To Be Facing the Woman Who Once Forced Her Way Into His Life, & Relying Upon Maddie For Help Is A New Kind Of Torture. She Is Kooky & Difficult to Make Sense Of At Times, But Her Energy Is Infectious.


Madison Goldbloom, twenty-six, is a bit of a strange bird. She isn’t motivated by money or prestige. Her near endless supply of empathy and her kind-hearted selflessness has earned her the affectionate moniker Martyr Maddie. The pixie-like beauty adorns herself in the most unusual and colorful garbs, coordinated in such a busy and chaotic fashion so as to sometimes be an eyesore. In spite of her apparent lack of style, the art school grad landed a coveted internship at Croquis, designing wedding gowns. Located in Manhattan, Croquis is a wedding gown company that partners exclusively with Black & Co., a department store. With some hard work she managed to turn that into a full-time job and is still there four years later. Since her stint as a flower girl at age five, Maddie has dreamed of her own wedding one day. That she now earns her living designing gowns for eager brides seems quite fitting. Though she barely scrapes by, she has good friends, a studio apartment she enjoys, and a job she loves.

She hasn’t always had an easy life, having lost her mother to cancer when she was a teen, but Maddie learned to pick herself up and keep going with a smile, never complaining. She regrets that she and her father hadn’t had their act together at the time her mother died, even though it had just been a temporary setback. The idea that her mother had left the world amidst uncertainty didn’t sit well with her, but she hoped that her mother somehow knew it had all worked out. Her father still runs the flower shop that her mother loved running in their Pennsylvania hometown, and Maddie continues to keep her mother’s memory alive by surrounding herself with fresh flowers. She reminisces daily over the sacred letters that her mother had written to her over the course of the lengthy illness that eventually took her life.

Maddie had thought for a brief time a year ago that she might have found her own Prince Charming. Instead, he had turned out to be the devil himself. They shared six months together, and she had even met most of his family. In hindsight there had been signs. As well as they had gotten along, she never could read him. Their conversations were never too deep. Their chemistry was off the charts though, so nothing else had seemed to matter at the time. That is, until she caught him cheating last winter. He had shredded her heart, and six months later it is midsummer, and Maddie is finally trying to turn the page to a new chapter in her life. Her childhood friend and next door neighbor Layla is encouraging her to get out and have some fun. An app matched Maddie with Dr. Ethan Goodman, and three weeks later she still has hopes that he might be the one. Like Maddie, he wants to settle down and start a family, and he has a dash of quirkiness in his sense of style. He is kind, and they are taking their time to get to know one another. He is absolutely perfect, and absolutely safe – nothing like Chase Black.

Chase Black, thirty-two, is a billionaire playboy in NYC and is always dressed in black. Closed, cold, an ruthless, he is accustomed to getting his way. He is COO of Black & Co., Manhattan’s busiest department store and the powerhouse that his father built. Chase is positioned to take over as CEO when his father eventually retires, but his cousin Julian (who was raised as his older brother) has his eyes set on that title. Needless to say, there is some tension both at work and at family dinners of late. But all of that means nothing when the news of Ronan Black’s diagnosis arrives. Stage four prostate cancer, with just months left to live. Chase may be the devil to the female population, but he holds his family near and dear. As his family begins to crumble before his is eyes, he remembers what Mad had once shared with him about regretting the timing of her mother’s passing. Recalling how much his family had liked her, and the fact that he never had admitted that they had broken up, he is inspired on the spot to announce their engagement to his parents which immediately lightens the mood.

When Chase suddenly shows up in Maddie’s life six months after their epic breakup, not even she can muster the patience to hear him out. With much persistence and patience, though, Chase eventually wears her down. He appeals to the Martyr Maddie in her, who never can say no. For his father’s sake, she agrees to be his fake fiancée. The plan is short-term, and they both know the truth will come out once his father passes, but they agree that Chase’s father should find some peace in believing that Chase is ready to settle down with a good woman. But something unexpected happens when this couple reluctantly teams up. Maddie sees a side of Chase she hadn’t seen before. He is sometimes vulnerable, showing the hint of a heart somewhere inside. Nevertheless he is still sarcastic and used to getting his way in everything they do. Maddie, on the other hand, has evolved since last winter. Being nice had left her destroyed in the end, and she isn’t about to repeat that episode. She girds her loins and tries to demonstrate that she isn’t the same timid woman from last year. Chase’s wealth and experience had intimidated her then, but she couldn’t care less about pleasing him or measuring up now. She voices her opinion on everything, and gets quite feisty when she decides to put her foot down. Their banter is entertaining. The story is somewhat incestuous with several entanglements that add little twists along the way. Eventually the couple gets a beautiful and well-earned HEA.

Chase and Maddie’s story is a slow burn steeped in heated chemistry. Chase and Maddie are largely at odds, neither too happy about the situation they find themselves in. They bicker and complain about one another. They are often unkind. They are united in their goal, though. Chase is happy to resume things with Maddie on a no-strings basis, but Maddie can’t risk her heart a second time. And besides that, she is dating a good man. Chase reluctantly accepts whatever help Maddie is willing to offer, even if that means that Ethan remains in the picture. Meanwhile, Chase and Maddie both have some lessons to learn. Neither had been fully open on their first go around, so it was not surprising that things had failed. Maddie had been a pushover in her attempt to please Chase, which hadn’t been healthy for either of them. Even though they aren’t really together now, they get a do-over of sorts. Maddie resets the dynamics when she learns to stand strong and have confidence in herself. She also learns about the dangers of being too nice. Chase has tuned his feelings out for so many years that he is almost hopeless. He does eventually begin to recognize that he has a heart somewhere inside, and that in turn opens the door love. They both have a lot of work to do before they have any chance as a couple, even if the chemistry is there all along.

Chase and Maddie’s slow burn is a fake fiancée story about cold hearts and second chances. Egotistical Chase Black is not happy to be facing the woman who once forced her way into his life, and relying upon Maddie for help is a new kind of torture. She is kooky and difficult to make sense of at times, but her energy is infectious when she becomes impassioned. She was nothing like the other women he dated, and that had turned out to be a bad thing. Her reliability and compassion end up being just what the doctor ordered, though. Themes include flowers, letters, and Hallmark movies. There are a number of laugh out loud moments as well as some tears. The story is wonderfully written. The plot is somewhat complex. The characters are carefully crafted and three dimensional. The story is written in first person. The POV alternates between Chase and Maddie. I rate this book 4.5 stars.

As for the Audio: it is well-performed and consistent with the book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amanda
  • 18-03-21

Repetitive, annoying, predictable.

Listening to this audiobook felt like listening to a parody of similar books. But like an SNL version. It was that obvious and cheesy. Unassuming quirky girl sparks the attention of hot billionaire. Quirky girl, who is apparently super attractive, finds her mojo and puts “hot billionaires” priorities into perspective. That’s literally it. There is no deeper story line. To put it into the words of “Chase Black”, Overall I’d give it a “will not visit again, I want my money back zero star review”.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Samantha
  • 10-03-21

Brilliant

LJ Shen has done it again! Amazing story line and characters. As always I was not ready for it to end! 10/10 would recommend 🤓

1 person found this helpful

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  • Nicola Moore
  • 16-03-21

Not up to usual Shen standards

The story didn’t grip me like I’ve come to expect from L.J. Shen so was a bit disappointed. The thing that really reduced the score for me was the narrator’s awful Scottish accent in parts. It was so off putting.

3 people found this helpful

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  • CB
  • 22-05-21

Terrible accents

Loved the story & the narrators were good, but the Scottish accents....absolutely terrible. Please tell the narrators that if they can’t do accents well, just don’t.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Hannah C.
  • 19-05-21

Great story, but the accents??

Although the story line was cool, the performance of the Scottish accents were terrible. LUCKILY it didn't take away from the story but dear god !

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mrs. C. M. Mccann
  • 18-03-21

An enjoyable story

I usually love anything narrated by Ava Erickson and Sebastian York but the Scottish accents were absolutely dreadful from both narrators. I persevered but felt that this let the book down tremendously. I just don’t understand why this wasn’t picked up and fixed. If you can’t do an accent then don’t try.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mrs. M. Worsley
  • 17-03-21

Brilliant book

Loved it. Very entertaining and a good story. Great narrators Ava and Sebastian are incredible. Highly recommended

1 person found this helpful

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  • For Old Times' Sake
  • 12-03-21

Contemporary Romance Perfection

The Devil Wears Black is an wonderful listen, I completely and thoroughly enjoyed it! I defy anyone who loves witty, uplifting and engaging contemporary romance fiction to not feel the same as I did. A fake engagement between Maddie and Chase is just the beginning of the sparks, fire and chemistry that had me completely involved in this second chance love story.

Maddie is a wonderful, soft, giving and optimistic person while Chase is the 'Devil' in this tale (he isn't so bad, I completely adored him)!! Chase is going through a difficult time and his previous scandalous behaviour in their relationship has caused quite a ruckus between this pair, with some barbed and vicious banter and some hilarious, and delicious one-liners the result.

There was so much to enjoy in this audiobook, I found it immensely uplifting and enjoyed Chase's redemption after his many, many missteps. And Maddie, well her growth and ability to take the plunge and go with her heart made this a perfect tale for me.

Told in dual pov by two phenomenal narrators, this is a complete standalone story, I highly recommend this audiobook - a 5 star rating is just not enough!!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Christine
  • 10-03-21

fabulous

Great narrative brings a great storyalive
such an emotional ride so many highs and lows and so true to life
loved it x

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mazzy
  • 22-06-21

Two Very Dodgy Scottish Accents.

Two of the worst Scottish accents I have ever heard, which was a shame as Sebastian York is one of my favourite narrators. One of the characters didn't even need the Scottish accent, he had lived in New York since he was a very young child.
They rest of the narration was good.
The story was OK, but I hated the last couple of chapters - so cringey I could hardly bare to listen to them.

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  • Zoeb
  • 11-06-21

Brilliant story. But awful accents!

Thoroughly enjoyed this book.

I really wanted to kill Chase at times he such a arrogant man through the start of this book it was killing me….lol. How Maddie put up with him was beyond me, but then you see the hidden side, the side of him even he won’t admit is there.

Great storyline to this one, definitely a love will conquer all read.

Narrators did a great job for both Chase and Maddie. Sorry I’m going to be more critical being British, but that was an awful Scottish accent for Ronan and Julien, sounded more Irish or Eastern European at times, most definitely not Scottish. 😬

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-06-21

well worth the credit

I really enjoyed this book and is probably my favourite 'fake fiancee' book so far, yes there's a couple of accents that are a bit dodgy but its a miniscule part of the book and in no way takes away from the performance of 2 really good narrators who bring the story to life. I highly recommend it.

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  • RomanceBooktalk
  • 15-05-21

Great slow burning romance

I haven’t read an L J Shen book in very a long time, so when a good friend of mine recommended this book to me, I decided to read it. This is a fake-fiancé /second chance romance novel that is both entertaining and at times quite emotional.

I loved the chemistry between Chase and Maddie. It was really fun reading the banter between the two of them. Maddie was funny, sassy and quirky. Chase was your typical a$$hat billionaire who couldn’t commit to any long term relationship, especially after he was badly hurt by his first love. He never wanted to experience that kind of hurt ever again.

Maddie was finally moving on her life after her horrible breakup with Chase. One night, out of the blue, she finds him sitting in front of her apartment building begging her to pretend his fake-fiancé. What follows is a beautiful story of two deserving souls who were always meant to be together and their beautiful reunion. Include some family drama and you have the making of a great easy reading/listening slow burning love story.

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  • b
  • 11-05-21

DNF

It started strong, but half way through went down hill. Couldn’t actually finish the book.

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  • Barbra Lazzarini
  • 17-03-21

Loved it 💙💙

This was a fun hilarious sad frustrating hot and sexy story . Full of ups and downs. Good times and bad . I loved Clementine ❤️ she was the best . She stealed all the scene . God I hope we get more . Loved it ❤️💜💖💙💖💜❤️