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When the Siren Calls (The Siren, #1)
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When the Siren Calls (The Siren #1)

3.4  ·  Rating Details ·  389 Ratings  ·  189 Reviews
Restless and neglected, Isobel is suffocating in a stagnant marriage. Suave and charismatic Jay is fighting for survival. An invitation to visit Jay's resort in the hills of Tuscany sparks Isobel to imagine a life of freedom and excitement.

Dismissing her husband’s objections, Isobel pursues Jay to Tuscany on the pretext of searching for a holiday home. After fighting angui
Paperback, 338 pages
Published November 2012 by Troubador Publishing Ltd (first published January 4th 2012)
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Nov 06, 2012 Megan rated it it was ok
I received When the Siren Calls from NetGalley for an honest review. Upon seeing the beautiful cover, and then reading the synopsis I decided to take a chance on this one. Now, you know what they say about judging a book by its cover and the saying goes both ways… In this case, the cover was beautiful but the book just didn’t live up to it. I’m sorry to say I was disappointed with When the Siren Calls.

When the Siren Calls is told in the third person with each chapter changing focus to a differen
Dec 07, 2012 Lori rated it really liked it
Shelves: review-book
Isobel Roberts leads a posh life devoid of passion. This lack of passion is suddenly becomes her sole focus after she meets Jay by chance. Months unfold before the two are reunited and able to explore her feelings.
I could not justifiably give this book anything less than four stars. It was well written, the pacing was flawless and I did manage to lose myself in it.

I read someone state that this book is the thinking woman's Fifty. I can agree to that. It is a much better written book. While not a
Elizabeth Jasper
Oct 13, 2012 Elizabeth Jasper rated it really liked it
This story focuses on relationships: within marriage, between business partners, between friends and lovers - and describes how lies and discontent can ruin relationships and the lives of those involved.

Isobel, married for fifteen years to workaholic high-flier, Peter, has a chance meeting in Marrakech with Jay, a wheeler-dealer property investor, who is looking for funding for his dodgy tourist complex in Tuscany. While nothing happens between Isobel and Jay, she finds him hard to forget and,
FicTalk Blog
Dec 01, 2012 FicTalk Blog rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc, reviewed-in-2012
Reviewed by Heather - 2.5 stars

This book took me quite a while to get into, and honestly I never really did. All the business aspects included made it very difficult for me to dive into the world created. I didn't really connect with any of the characters and when that happens, I find it very hard to enjoy reading.

First off, Jay...Jay was an insatiable asshole. He seemed to screw or want to screw every woman he came in to contact with. All he cared about was himself and had no redeeming qualiti
Tammy  Zautner
Nov 30, 2012 Tammy Zautner added it
Shelves: dnf
I had read some great reviews on this book and seen some where it's comparison to Christian Grey. The cover was just stunning. I readily jumped on the band wagon.

I can honestly say that I only got maybe 4 or 5 chapters into the book and was not able to go any further. I attempted to read this multiple times. The book was rather confusing, no real character chemistry, and it did not seem anything like an erotica or Christian Grey I had every read.

Unfortunately I had to place this on my first di
Jan 12, 2013 Amy rated it really liked it
I am obsessed with Italy. It doesn't take much to stoke the fires, either. So when I learn that a book is set there, I'm already inclined to like it. But inclination only lasts so far. The book does need to be good - fun to read, interesting, entertaining.

When the Siren Calls does not disappoint on any level. Not with its Italian setting, not with its story and not with its characters.

In a fit of pique with her husband, Isobel heads out, unaccompanied, to a Marrakech marketplace, where things ge
Dec 06, 2012 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow great book!
The book opens with Isobel going out by herself shopping into a bazaar in Marrakech after an argument with her husband Peter . The author describes the scene that ensues so well that you can visually picture her surroundings and taste her fear while she is being harassed fIrst by the beggar children and then by a group of demanding, groping arabic men . Isobel is saved by Jay Brooke a handsome business man she is instantly attracted to.

Isobel and Peter return home to England but I
Jan 06, 2013 Bloggeretterized rated it liked it
Recommended to Bloggeretterized by: The Author

I got this book through Netgalley. Thank you very much Netgalley! ;)

First of all, I want to clear something up. It didn't take me 3 months to read this book. I actually read it in 7 days. It's just that I hadn't had much time to read, so, that's why my starting and ending dates are so far off. Considering that I read it in a week, I can say it's a fast paced book.

I didn't read any reviews before reading the book. I was drawn to it by the title and the cover! (those 9 months were worth it Tom Ba
Dec 15, 2012 Heather rated it liked it
Shelves: ebook
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lisa Leila
Jul 25, 2012 Lisa Leila rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First of all, i'm not a big reader. Having quite a fast paced job, i find it hard to get into books in the 10 mins standing on the tube or squashed into the 25 bus on the way to work.

This little prequel has made me think it will probably be worth it. Let's put it this way, it made me miss my stop! The opening is fast paced and edgy, the heroine Isobel basically could BE me and i loved reading about the haunting streets of Marrakech in this prequel. Having been there, i can tell you Tom Barry ha
Matt Alexander
Jul 22, 2012 Matt Alexander rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn't know what a "Prequel" was - now i do ! This is a short story, about three chapters, and i read it in one sitting. It is clearly intended to be a free teaser to interest you in the main book. It worked, i'm hooked, and i just bought the full book on amazon.

If you've ever been in a souk in the middle east, which the author obviously has, you will readily relate to this story, and identify with the protagonist and her plight. If you've never been in a souk, you'll think you have by the tim
Amy Wells
Oct 29, 2012 Amy Wells rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this debut novel by Tom Barry. I was able to visualise the luscious Tuscan landscapes and connect with the characters. The story kept me turning the pages. I think it's particularly interesting that Tom's central character is female, as he is writing a woman's point of view from a man's perspective. I was also intrigued by the business aspects of the story as business is not something I know much about so even though I was a bit lost with all the corporate shinnagans for a while, I fig ...more
Apr 15, 2013 Wendy rated it liked it
Shelves: apr-13
"When The Siren Calls", by Tom Barry, is the first book in a trilogy.
The intriguing storyline revolves around the precarious personal and professional lives of the characters. The plot twists involve lies, betrayal, money, power and sex.
I found it difficult to find redeeming qualities in any of the characters portrayed in this book and wanted to smack a few of them at times.
However, the author's writing kept me absorbed in the story and the surprise ending was ideal.
I look forward to where Mr.
Chris Parker
Apr 01, 2012 Chris Parker rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a 6,000 word (three chapter) prequel - a lead-in to the main book. It certainly got me interested enough to be constantly checking whether the full book is available. The description is evocative and builds tension invisibly, while the characters are believable and well-rounded.
My only criticism of the prequel is that it doesn't deliver enough to satisfy the reader - which is, I suppose, why they call it a teaser!
The nice thing about this sort of sample is you can 'try before you buy'.
Jennifer (Bad Bird Reads)
I don't know how to categorize this one. I got through half of it and finally gave up. It has a little romance, sex, and some intrigue. But it really wasn't for me. The writing was too much for me. I was bored mostly and I cared very little for all the characters. I gave it 2 stars because I do think there is an audience out there for this type of book, it just wasn't me. Too many business discussions made my eyes want to cross. I just didn't care to read anymore.
Dec 20, 2012 Maura rated it really liked it
I received this book via netgallery, and after some time I have finally managed to read it. The plot was interesting, I wasn't really expecting it after seing the title, but overall it was a nice read. Some characters are completely assholes, some of them aren't, you'll have to read the book to find this out. :)
Nov 06, 2012 Leslie rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: A sexy, complex love story. say a book has gotten me a riled up would be an understatement...actually on second thought 'riled up' would be the appropriate term to describe how I was after reading this great book.

First off, I have to give a big THANK YOU to the author Tom Barry for enabling people such as myself the opportunity to receive this book for free. It was generous of him to do so and just wanted to convey how much I appreciate it.

This book is about a married woman, Isobel, who feels stuck in a rut of a m
Jan 05, 2013 Cherryreads rated it it was ok
I really wanted to like this book. I read some of the reviews and saw the cover (yes, I do judge my romance novels by their covers) and I was excited to read another captivating romance. I was not captivated. I had a very difficult time reading this book. There seemed to be so much going on at once and I often felt that some parts of the story lines were lacking. I am willing to admit that I haven't read a lot of literature from English authors so there might be some cultural idiosyncrasies tha ...more
Jan 11, 2013 Pam rated it liked it
I received When the Siren Calls from NetGalley for an honest review.
I heard that the book was a bit "50 Shades", which I have not read (I know, I'm one of the few) and was curious to see what all the hype was about.
I've never read anything by this author, and am always interested in expanding my horizons.
I'm not 100% sure I know how to feel about When the Siren Calls. While it was well written, the descriptions putting the reader right into the scenes, the characters were pretty controversial
Jenee Rager
Jan 10, 2013 Jenee Rager rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit
After trying to win this book several times through the goodsreads giveaways, the author offered me a free copy of the novel via I appreciate his kindness and really enjoyed the book.

As I am not a world traveler there were a few situations that were slightly confusing to me, and I wish that Isobel had met Jay in England rather than Turkey as I think that is the one part of the book I really didn't enjoy that much. The rest is a well written noire. While the plot of the story is in
Daphne (Winged Reviews)
I was intrigued at first by the concept of this book, especially the notion of an older woman escaping to Italy for an affair. However, I would probably describe this as semi-erotica for several reasons. Firstly, it took far too long to get the premise of the book, the hook that was promised in the synopsis. Secondly, the book was focused too much on the issues to do with the business that the romance took a back seat. I knew a lot more about holiday home scams than who Jay actually is.

The char
Dec 14, 2012 Lauren rated it it was ok
Shelves: romance
I was first intrigue by this book solely because of the cover and then I read the description and thought why not. Well, it was 50 Shades of Grey gone wrong.

The characters were overly annoying. There was nothing redeeming about Isobel, she was purely spoiled and naïve. She does everything in her power to act stupid and get into dumb situations. Jay is just a jerk, and NOT in a good way. Basically everything he says is just to get into her pants and his choice of career is less than honorable. Th
Talk Supe

I first read the teaser from Amazon and I really liked the premise but as the story moved forward, I found myself losing interest in the story. Try as I might I can't find it in me to connect to any of the characters. Jay is too suave, I see him as this oily, up to no good scoundrel who thinks he's so cool. And Isobel, your husband is obviously not in to you so why wallow and debase yourself with Jay? Either you get out or you try and fix it. Don't stay in the middle.

I guess I'll never really
Tabby Shiflett
This book has a great cover! The business mystery part is interesting, and there is some adult romance throughout; however I would not put this novel in the erotica genre. The luxurious settings are pretty well described, but most of the major male characters need a little work to make them more likeable. Maybe Jay will have some redeeming qualities revealed in the next one. Overall, the book was put together well and is gritty enough to feel quite realistic.

LT Member Giveaway
When the Siren Call
Nov 10, 2012 Jael rated it liked it
The cover of When the Siren Calls by Tom Barry sold me before I read the e-mail pitch. The cover is beautiful. The woman on the cover looks mysterious. She's floating in the water. She's barely above the surface of the water. She's about to drown. Is she drowning literally or figuratively? I wanted to know.

The story opens with Isobel trying to navigate the streets of Marrakech, Morrocco. Aggressive merchants in the marketplace are preventing her from leaving, until a dashing stranger saves the d
Jan 14, 2015 ♡B♡ rated it it was ok
I was hoping for something much more than what I got.
I was not drawn in at all I wanted to like it I really did but just couldn't get pulled in.

I don't have an issue reading about cheating but I know many do. I didn't like Jay at all and I doubt anyone who has read this book will like the guy.

It did leave you on a tad cliffhanger but for me it wasn't enough to make me want the next book.

I have read other books where there was a "pyramid scheme" and this was a smidg different but there was st
Jan 07, 2013 Amy rated it liked it
I have to say that at first this book was really hard for me to get into. There was a lot of business and explanation of everything before it got to the romance part of it. I didn't really connect with any of the characters and Jay was a little hard to like, but in the end I did end up liking this book and would read the next one. My favorite character was Lucy even though I know I shouldn't like her. I didn't have much faith in Isobel, but she did surprise me along the way. All in all it was en ...more
J. Ewbank
Dec 28, 2012 J. Ewbank rated it liked it
I'm glad I had a chance to read this book. If you just homed in on the title you would think this book was all about sex - it wasn't. The book was more complex and dealt with other human issues as well. It was a love story but the love was not fulfilled in the end (ready for the next book in the series?). The conclusion was not what was expected and the themes were weightier than the title would suggest. Interesting reading.

J. Robert Ewbank author "Wesley's Wars" and "John Wesley, Natural Man, a
Harriet Schultz
Aug 18, 2012 Harriet Schultz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The prequel to Tom Barry's highly-anticipated novel opens with a woman wandering lost and tormented in the souk in Marrakesh, Morocco. And lost Isobel is, in many ways. Although just a taste of the novel due in November, this short sample is a fascinating story with an intriguing female lead. Barry has done an excellent job of hooking this reader with a taste of what's to come. Men sometimes have trouble writing from a woman's point of view, but he's captured Isobel's frustration and longing for ...more
N. Kuhn
Mar 05, 2013 N. Kuhn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
I'm not sure if I really enjoyed this book. The inner look at relationships, A deep view into the personal lives of the characters, Their unhappy marriages, still unhappy while cheating, unhappy in business. On one hand it reads like a book on business, and on the other, it's like a full on smut novel. I think this is a reason men shouldn't write romance. They turn it into something dirty. It's interesting to see how each person handles their situation, but at the same time, there are just long, ...more
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About Tom Barry
When the pen is your sword

Five things about me…

- one of eight kids, lifestory is the classic immigrant tale of seeking to live up to parental expectations, while working to mark out your own trail.
- I have aspects of an obsessive personality, establishing a work-life balance was a major challenge.
- I gave up on my business career in my mid-forties, I just didn’t tell my boss! Find
More about Tom Barry...

Other Books in the Series

The Siren (3 books)
  • When the Siren Cries (The Siren, #2)
  • Saving Jay (The Siren, #3)

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