Erin Muses's Reviews > Wild Man

Wild Man by Kristen Ashley
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Jun 02, 2012

liked it
bookshelves: guys-with-guns, romance, contemporary

So here I am again - trying to describe a book that was great on story but still hard to read because of technical aspects of the writing that my shoulda-been-an-editor's brain cannot get past.

Tess O'Hara is the owner of a cake shop who meets Brock Lucas while he is undercover for the DEA and using a fake name. He is actually investigating her to see if she is involved with her ex-husband's nefarious dealings. When she finds out, she drops him, but three months later he returns to get some answers as to why she left him and pick up where they left off. They obviously get back together and help each other through some serious issues - his father's illness, her emotional pain from her ex, his ex's insanity, and the trials of life. And they live happily ever after...

Okay, first, there is no way that he would be back in my good graces without a serious amount of recognition on his part that he did something wrong in lying to her. Considering her past, there should have been more hesitation on her part to allow someone who has hurt her back in her life. Speaking of the rape, something about it and her reactions seemed a little off to me. Survivors who have not dealt with it through therapy or other means will be either way promiscuous or way skittish. I just didn't feel that from Tess.

Another thing that bothers me is the volatility of these people's lives - I noticed it in Mystery Man, too. I can't imagine life being so chaotic. Children especially need more peace, and Brock, who is admittedly a wild man, seems to ooze non-peace.

Why are the characters always whispering? They whisper in bed together, they whisper at each other from across the room, they whisper when they're happy, they whisper when they're sad or angry... Too much whispering!

Yet another thing that bothers me about what I have read of Ms. Ashley's is the cursing. While I do not curse in my own life (except for the incredibly rare occasion when it is just necessary), I don't have a problem with it in my reading - sometimes one curse word can carry incredible weight and emotion when used in the right way. These characters, however, take cursing to a whole 'nother level. There comes a point when the cursing is taking the space of what could be a wide vocabulary, and that line has been crossed here. The words just don't have the same meaning because they are used in the dialogue approximately every third word (okay, maybe that's a slight exaggeration). I also don't like that they were used frequently in front of children (granted, this is fiction and no real children were harmed).

All of that said, I loved the story. Brock and Tess just work together - the love that they have for each other feels authentic. Every element felt like it was necessary to further the momentum of the story, and I loved that Brock and Tess were not pulled apart by all of the crap that they experienced. They grew into each other and their family, and the whole thing made for a satisfying story.

4 stars for the story, take 1 away for the aforementioned issues and the editing

I am a series girl and have enjoyed the first two stories, so I am excited to get to know Mitch and Tack even with expected difficulties in reading.
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Reading Progress

June 2, 2012 – Started Reading
June 2, 2012 – Shelved
June 3, 2012 –
60.0% "Thank goodness I don't have to deal with a previously-married man! Olivia is a freak!"
June 4, 2012 – Finished Reading

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