I don't usually read series romance, but it was Thanksgiving and I needed something to read at my folks's house. Meh. The suspense plot was OK, but tw...moreI don't usually read series romance, but it was Thanksgiving and I needed something to read at my folks's house. Meh. The suspense plot was OK, but two twenty-somethings falling into insta-love (and really, it happened in like 2 days! after just a handful of short conversations and one night of sex. Really???) doesn't really satisfy me. And the idea that almost everyone in the town hated the heroine for not being able to remember the accident strained credulity.
I had also forgotten how DRAMATIC the language is in the series books. People don't have normal reactions to things. Much of it is overblown. For example: the hero can't just be normally appalled at the actions of the villain; he has to be SOOOO ANGRY that he can barely restrain himself from punching the guy out. (etc. etc. etc.) (less)
I finally got around to borrowing a copy of this from a friend, and all I have to say is, "this is what all the fuss was about?" It's so clearly from...moreI finally got around to borrowing a copy of this from a friend, and all I have to say is, "this is what all the fuss was about?" It's so clearly from the fan fiction world that it's not even funny. The characters are unlikable--she's dumb as a hamster and he's a controlling asshole--and there's not really a plot beyond Christian acting like a stalker. And now they're making a movie out of it? Maybe a professional screen-writer can save this hot mess, but color me skeptical.
Edited to add: My reaction to this is similar to my reaction to Wuthering Heights. Lots of people call that a great romance. I thought Catherine was a spoiled brat and Heathcliff a bitter asshole who had to make everyone else around him as miserable as he was. FSOG is treading very close to this territory...except that Emily Bronte could actually write decent prose.
I thought I would try the second book, since I had already borrowed it, but am about halfway through and now thoroughly bored. The Mary-Sue-ness is getting too strong.(less)
This was a quick fun read. Very sexy. However, although Angel and Cole had serious chemistry, I'm still skeptical that love between them could occur s...moreThis was a quick fun read. Very sexy. However, although Angel and Cole had serious chemistry, I'm still skeptical that love between them could occur so quickly.(less)
I thought the concept of this had promise, but the execution was horrible. This book is self-published, and it shows in many ways. ***MILD SPOILERS FO...moreI thought the concept of this had promise, but the execution was horrible. This book is self-published, and it shows in many ways. ***MILD SPOILERS FOLLOW***
First, there are grammar problems throughout the book. One of the predominant ones was abuse of dialogue tags. Smiled, stood, nodded, and other non-verbal actions ARE NOT dialogue tags and should not be punctuated as such. The author also (grammatically) abuses dialogue tags by using almost anything other than "said" as a tag. This is a beginning writer mistake, and one of my pet peeves.
The world-building was extremely poor. First, the whole concept of infertility is badly explained. The author says in one place that woman "can't conceive, at least not naturally" but never explains how they ARE able to conceive or what assistance they are given. There is a vague reference to a lottery called "The Day of the Chosen", where all women are given the chance to have a child but the children were "born in labs". But does the author mean "born" in labs or "conceived" in labs? Because the next sentence in the book says that "the government had to intervene for women to become pregnant." Huh? If women become pregnant, then the children are presumably NOT born in labs. Then there is reference to Olivia's mother conceiving naturally, getting pregnant, and Olivia being "born". But if children are "born" in labs, then how did Olivia's mother conceal her pregnancy? And how did she give birth at home with no one knowing and no medical treatment? And how did she just suddenly appear with a baby? Even if she had help from one doctor who knew her secret and added her name as a lottery winner, wouldn't a bunch of other people know that no baby had been made for her in the lab where children are "born"? So maybe the author really did mean "conceived" in labs, then perhaps implanted in women. Overall it was confusing and contradictory.
Also, this future society apparently has the technology to construct a teleportation device, but cannot solve an infertility problem? I realize that physical and biological sciences are different, but still that begs credulity. The society also has unmanned drones, tanks, cars that run totally off solar power, and yet "cameras hadn't been used for centuries" and Olivia was stunned to see photographs. Olivia recollects a bit later that "in Genesis it was illegal to take pictures". If cameras hadn't been used in centuries, why would it be illegal to use them? And how in the world would an industrialized modern society function without photo or image documentation?
Those are just a couple of examples of the mish-mash of inconsistent and ill-thought-out world-building. There are many others. I would also like to echo what another reviewer pointed out: that the supposed secret city that Olivia and Joshua end up in has roads leading right to it (??!!), and Olivia and Joshua learn the ins and outs of a car very quickly despite never having seen one before.
Let's talk plot, which seemed a bit contrived at times. Olivia is forced to flee from her home of Genesis because the government finds out that she might be able to conceive naturally and toss her in jail. Lucky for her, her best friend and husband-to-be, Joshua, has family involved with the "rebel alliance" (yes, I kid you not; the author called the dissidents the "rebel alliance"--Star Wars, anyone?...). They are sent the long and risky way out of Genesis to hook up with someone who can take them to a town called Haven; meanwhile, Joshua's mother steps into her teleportation device and meets the kids in Haven. Huh? Why not just stick the kids in the device and get them there safe and sound? That's never answered. Somehow that government finds the kids are at Haven, attacks Haven, and forces the kids to flee towards a secret city that Joshua found on a map (that would be the secret city with roads leading right to it). The farce that the kids are put through in that city is a ridiculously contrived waste of time and man-power, and the story veered into the very-weird when the kids developed telepathic communication and telekinesis powers after some mystery medical procedure. At which point, I wondered again: if this society is that medically advanced, why haven't they cured the infertility problem?
*sigh* It's an mess from beginning to end. This author really needs good editors--both content and line-editing--to make this concept work. (less)
I'm conflicted about this book. For a self-published book, the technical aspect of the writing was fairly good, as was the pacing of the overall story...moreI'm conflicted about this book. For a self-published book, the technical aspect of the writing was fairly good, as was the pacing of the overall story. I also generally like romantic suspense or thrillers.
However, there is a lot--and I mean A LOT--of of sex in this book, including a rape scene. Much of the later sex is BDSM with pain infliction. Which is not my thing and is not clearly indicated in the Amazon description of the book, although it is here on GR (which I read later). Fortunately, this book was a loaner from a friend.
I also never really connected with the main characters. I've known people, including musicians, who turned to drugs for various reasons, and I've never once found that lifestyle or person attractive. I'm also skeptical that a woman who was abused for two years would come to get off on the type of abuse she had been receiving (this is a major aspect of the storyline).
There were also minor other things that didn't ring true for me: how could someone with a false identity and on the run come up with the loans, leases, paperwork, etc. to open her own business? (Answer, she couldn't). How could one person own so much of the police, FBI, etc., that the hero & heroine go to them for help? (answer: he couldn't) And the way the bad guy was dealt with in the end was just way way too simple.
So I'm giving this book a three. Others may enjoy, but some of the topics and character traits included in the book were just major turn-offs for me personally.(less)
Someone needs to buy this writer some commas. No, seriously...this writer needs to learn basic punctuation rules. She also abuses opening gerund claus...moreSomeone needs to buy this writer some commas. No, seriously...this writer needs to learn basic punctuation rules. She also abuses opening gerund clauses, both by using so many of them that it is laughably bad and distracting and by incorrectly using the clauses when she really means to indicate serial action, not simultaneous action. For an example of the laughably bad, just look at the opening sentences of Chapter 1. The writer also repeats words in close proximity to each other, uses filler words, writes stilted dialogue (no contractions? Really?) etc. All indications are that this is an amateur writer who really really needs a good critique partner and an English grammar class.
Now as for other aspects to the story, meh. The description of the sex that happens almost immediately at the beginning of the book is perfunctory and lacks emotion or impact. Also consider that the hero and heroine--and I use these terms loosely--are discussing how the hero can lie to his current girlfriend about why he wants to break up with her, followed by the sex scene which was initiated by the heroine cough***cheaters***cough, ending with the heroine getting upset that the hero came inside her even though she initiate the sex and NEITHER of them discussed safe sex at all during their little cheating romp. You'd think that one unplanned pregnancy would make a woman careful, but apparently not this woman.
After this less than stellar beginning, it was hard for me to continue reading the story. But I persevered...and was rewarded with yet another sex scene WITHOUT protection. This time the hero managed to withdraw before coming but good grief. He had had time to go dump his current girlfriend, pack his bags, and come back to the heroine's. He couldn't stop at a drug store and buy some condoms? Really? (and this sex scene was a clunkily written as the previous one).
After this, our lovely heroine gets sexually harassed at work and has her no-good ex come back and try to make up. She's apparently a speshul snowflake that everyone loves. Frankly, I quit reading when the two men I just mentioned get into a fight over her that lasts FIVE minutes. Um, nope. Not in the real world.
I'm glad this was a freebie. This was just horribly written, and I have read better on amateur writing sites. (less)
LOL. DNF'd this crappy book at about 20%. I could see within the first few percent why this was self-published. The writing wasn't technically as bad...moreLOL. DNF'd this crappy book at about 20%. I could see within the first few percent why this was self-published. The writing wasn't technically as bad as a lot of self-published books, but just about everything else was. To wit:
World-building? We don't need no stinking world-building. We're told that Gigi--our lovely speshul snowflake heroine--wakes up in "the Circle". Too bad we have to read the book description, rather than the book itself, to find out anything about this Circle. The reader also quickly hit with references to the "real" world and real geography, but no time or place is given for the story. A very amateur mistake.
The little world-building that does occur includes nonsensical and unexplained rules like the Alpha weres in the Circle don't take mates or have children. WTF? Protip: have your world-building make sense. (I did have a bottle of wine riding on whether or not poor silly Gigi turned out to be a virgin--my vote was YES for one of the most annoying tropes ever--but I couldn't bring myself to read far enough to find out.)
Then we have the Mary Sue heroine who is dumb as a box of rocks and has the survival instincts of a suicidal gerbil. She really is just super speshul, though, because all the males immediately lust after this woman who appears (to them) to have the mentality of child. cough***sexual predators***cough. Made my skin crawl.
And let me not forget to mention the reason for her cluelessness: Someone has wiped out all her memories and, in some cases (this is not clearly explained) replaced them with new ones. So she knows what a checkbook is but not how to use it. She doesn't know how to waitress, but she does know that she wants to cook (and how she remembers how to cook is ????).
Overall, just a poor execution of what might maybe have possibly been an interesting concept in the hands of a writer with some talent. (less)
Loved this book. This is my favorite in the series so far! (OK, I know that's not a very helpful "review", but I need some time to digest it before wr...moreLoved this book. This is my favorite in the series so far! (OK, I know that's not a very helpful "review", but I need some time to digest it before writing a non-spoilery review.(less)