Claire Contreras's Reviews > Taming the Beast

Taming the Beast by Emily Maguire
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i'm not going to rate this book. I am, however, going to talk about it.

If you're looking for a teacher-student romance , I personally don't think this fits the bill. I wouldn't call the disturbing relationship that this 38 year old married man with children started with his 14 year old clueless English student romantic. In fact, romantic would be the last word I would use to describe this book. When I got to the second page and the story went right into their first sexual encounter I thought, "Well, that's one way to start an affair." It simply came out of left field. You see, I was still thinking that I was going to read a romance story. I had absolutely no idea that this was a story about abuse (both physical and emotional) and the consequences that this 38 year old man left for this poor girl to deal with when he left her.

At one point as I was reading one of the million sexscapades this girl has (if you don't think highly of your neighborhood slut, good luck reading this one). I haven't felt so conflicted in my feelings about a heroine in a very long time. Sarah was a classless (I had no issues with this) selfish (huge issue with this) whore (no issue with this). The selfish bit was what had me shaking me head and thinking, "Why am I still reading?...oh, that's right, my morbid curiosity strikes again." She sleeps with anything that can get their dick up, and that's fine. I think by the end of it I understood why she did this, but at that point I didn't care.

When I got to 70% I thought, "Okay, the plot thickens, maybe something will happen now?..." I'm about to go into full blown spoiler mode now, so if you do not like spoilers do not read.

(view spoiler).

It's not a story for the weak hearted, that's for sure. I can't say I didn't like it because after having hours to process it, I guess in a sense I'm glad it wasn't your typical story. I wouldn't consider this a romance, though. I would say this is a story about a 14 year old girl who is abused by her English teacher that grows up slutting around because he left her and she doesn't know how to sort out the feelings she's left with. She doesn't know how to deal with the only person (ever) in her life that has told her he loved her, leaving her so she decides to shut out love from her life. She decides to turn a blind eye to the person who does love her, who would do anything for her, who would die for her, because she's too worried about having just a physical connection with someone. It's a story about a girl who reunites with the bastard who shaped her to be this heartless cow and starts an abusive relationship with him again.

So that's it: physical and emotionally abused girl falls into the same trap twice because she wants to be manipulated and tossed around. Because she is so self-destructive and thinks so little of herself that it makes this all right.
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Reading Progress

September 11, 2013 – Started Reading
September 11, 2013 – Shelved
September 11, 2013 –
26.0% "Idk why I'm still reading. I guess I'm intrigued enough. Still, I can't remember the last time I was so confused as to how to feel about a story and it's characters."
September 11, 2013 –
48.0% "Hold your horses, this is getting interesting."
September 11, 2013 –
60.0% "Selfish cow doesn't even cover it. The author did an incredible job in portraying a selfish whore, that's for sure."
September 11, 2013 –
62.0% "Hoooly. Creepster, anyone? Why do I like it is the bigger question? LOL"
September 11, 2013 –
71.0% "This is absolutely fucking sick. Sick."
September 11, 2013 –
September 18, 2013 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-11 of 11 (11 new)

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message 1: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Awesome review!

message 2: by Taryn (new) - added it

Taryn I'm so glad you read this before me. I don't think it's for me, yet I'm strangely intrigued by it to the point that I want to read it. Makes no sense!

message 3: by Claire (new) - added it

Claire Contreras Thanks!

message 4: by Claire (new) - added it

Claire Contreras Lol read it so we can discuss it!

message 5: by Taryn (new) - added it

Taryn Oy. Maybe I should to see what you mean. Watch me love it.

message 6: by Claire (new) - added it

Claire Contreras Ehhhh I don't think so but you never know!

message 7: by Leah (new)

Leah You're a trooper for getting through this one. :D

About the ending: (view spoiler)

message 8: by Leah (new)

Leah I almost wonder if Maguire's editor read it and said, "You can't end it like this. Throw the reader some kind of bone, dammit!"

message 9: by Claire (new) - added it

Claire Contreras Exactly. I completely agree with you. She's too codependent (just like Jamie was) and I honestly don't see her surviving any of it. I guess maybe if she would have shown where she had the transition instead of telling us on the last damn page, I would've been okay with it. Not really, though. From the second page I was already doubting the entire story because of that exact thing. She told me their connection, she didn't show it to me, which in turn made me feel like they had none. It was definitely intriguing enough for me to read the entire thing and I loved the way she showed the destruction that one act could cause somebody (because the mix of the age, what happened, and how little she was shown acceptance at home was enough to make this believable). Maybe I'm just stuck on the idea of redemption and the fact that I saw none at all from anybody in this story. I guess that's part of the beauty of it though, not everybody can be redeemed. And honestly in the end, if she would have ended it by having Sarah do what Jamie did, I would have been okay with it. I guess that goes to show you how little I felt for everybody in this story.

message 10: by Tara (new) - rated it 2 stars

Tara Garcia yes. yes. yes.
To every single word of your reviews.
I hated it just a little but more than I liked it. I was waiting (eagerly) for her to do what Jamie did. And it wouldn't have bothered me as much as it did when Jamie did it. I felt bad for him. And only him. I had no love (or like for that matter) for any other character in this book. There was no character development. It was pure act. All actions... The entire story was filled with act after act. So I just never had empathy or understanding for anything that either of them did.
Except Jamie. For some reason I took pause when he did what he did.

This book intrigued me.
As much as it frustrated me.
And I wasn't fond of the experience.

Next book please... ugh!

Shelby Greenwell Thanks for this review! I'm at the part where Daniel (bastard) comes back and he's treating her like crap. I can't decide if I want to finish it or give it away. Gahhh

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