Lizzie's Reviews > Blue-Eyed Devil

Blue-Eyed Devil by Lisa Kleypas
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Jan 13, 12

bookshelves: contemp-romance, read-in-2012
Read in January, 2012

I finished this at the same time as Rosario's Reading Journal, which posted a review I am on board with: http://rosario.blogspot.com/2012/01/b...

The first person narration, perversely, limited my ability to connect with the heroine and understand emotionally (as opposed to intellectually) why she remained in her abusive relationship with her first husband. Rosario's description of the narrative as "therapy speak" is spot on: this portion of the book reads as a conversation with the heroine's therapist, sanitized by the passage of time, as opposed to a gut-churning immersion in a real experience of guilt, shame, and abuse.

The hero was cardboard; I never read Sugar Daddy so I had no suspension of belief to overcome in order to buy him as the good guy. However, Cates contradictions and insecurities, which could have been used to better effect, were instead smugly related by the heroine with an additional helping of therapy speak.

Show don't tell was violated all over the place here; scenes with the potential for great dramatic effect (like the heroine's first post-marriage conversation with her father) were described as having occured rather than related in a full scene. Boring! and this further increased my emotional dissociation from the book.

Finally, the book relied on uber dramatic and eye-rolling events to move the relationship forward: elevator rescues, dramatic arguments at work, the final sequence of drama at the end. Plot devices substituted for emotional meetings of the mind, providing opportunities for post-trauma sex but a lack of real tension-building.
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