Friday, January 17, 2014

Review: The DNF Edition

Recently I had a string of DNF books that really frustrated me for one reason or another. I don’t normally post DNF reviews to the blog (you can find them on my DNF shelf on Goodreads if you really want to see them) but a few new releases stood as out as particularly frustrating reads so here’s a very quick look at them:

The Kelly Group International (KGI): A super-elite, top secret, family-run business.

Qualifications: High intelligence, rock-hard body, military background.

Mission: Hostage/kidnap victim recovery. Intelligence gathering. Handling jobs the U.S. government can’t.

Over the years, Donovan Kelly has fought relentlessly for justice, women and children always holding a special place in his heart. Working side by side with his brothers, Donovan has witnessed firsthand the toll it’s taken—physically, mentally, and emotionally—on his loved ones, and the innocent lives caught in the crossfire. What he never expects is for his next mission to happen right on his home turf—or for it to take a very personal turn.

Picturesque Kentucky Lake is the perfect place for a soul in search of safe harbor. A beautiful stranger has arrived—desperate, breathless, and on the run from a dark past closing in on her and the younger siblings she has vowed to protect. Donovan must now draw on every resource at his disposal—if he wants to save a woman and the children who may prove to be his destiny.

DNF - 70%

Oh boy. I hate not finishing this book (or any book really), but I just couldn't keep going. When the KGI series first came out, I loved it. I loved the mix of suspense with the romance that yes, from the start bordered on over the top but the combination worked. Lately, the over the topness is so much it's ridiculous to me.

With After the Storm, I had to keep reminding myself that this was in fact a KGI book, because even 70% in, there's no KGI mission, no feel of the teams and the suspense element surrounding whatever they're planning to do. Instead we get Donovan, a character who've I've been waiting to get to know more about from the start, meeting Eve, taking one look at her and her step-siblings and claiming them as his after knowing them basically an hour. At the point I stopped reading, the story spanned 2 days and we have them all living together in Van's home, there are declarations of love from everyone, the Kelly's welcoming them into their family, no questions asked, etc etc etc. These aren't elements that work for me and I feel like lately with Maya's books, that's all we've been getting. Her stories from the erotic genre and now her rom/suspense books are all reading the same to me and maybe it's a combination of her writing style that's changed along with my tastes in what I enjoy reading that's different, but it's just not working for me anymore. I don't like storylines that have the hero or heroine declaring their love for each other after 1 or 2 days, I don't like reading that the hero wants to put the troubles (in this case a nasty step-father) the heroine is facing on the back burner and making his priority getting the heroine into his bed to cement his claim on her. And I'm sorry, but if I have to read one more book where a character just wants to feel or show someone how "cherished" they are, I'll scream.

Needless to say, I'm stepping away from all her books. I had held out hope that her KGI series would remain consistent as I really did enjoy the earlier books in the series, but this one was a head shaker for me and ultimately I didn't care enough about anything in the story to finish. (originally posted to Goodreads, you can read my review and reader comments here.)

Two people learn what it really means to give up control in the sizzling new novel from the author of Blush and Surrender to Temptation.

When business mogul Elijah Masterson travels to the Mexican coast for his chain of luxury resorts, he purchases an emerald green glass sculpture for one of the properties. He is soon fascinated by the fiery temptress who created it. The attraction between them is instant and explosive, but Elijah resists, unsure that a woman as strong-willed as Samantha would ever yield in the way he needs her to.

Headstrong glass artist Samantha Collins hides a secret desire to submit to the right man. Samantha sees everything she wants in Elijah, but apart from one steamy night, he seems determined to keep his distance. She has always held back, but refusing to let go now that she’s found the dominant man she’s always wanted, Samantha makes Elijah an offer he can’t refuse: a month of absolute submission.

But after a month of incredible passion, will either of them be able to walk away?

DNF at 75%

I don’t have much to say other than this story is not for me. I couldn't connect with the characters, I didn't like how the BDSM was playing out especially with the heroine being new to the scene and being punished for not telling her Dom, this man she hardly knows everything about herself. It just didn't work for me. (Goodreads review posted here.)

In her new humorous and sensuous contemporary romance, USA Today bestselling author Lisa Plumley delves into the past of a character from Together for Christmas for his own love story—set in a family-owned pizzeria!

Tantalizing. Hot. Mouthwateringly delicious. The pizzas at the Portland restaurant chain Shane Maresca is secretly priming for takeover are all that and more. Unfortunately for him, so is Gabriella Grimani, the business owner’s daughter. He had no idea who she was when they had their first X-rated one night stand. Now she’s all he can think about. For someone whose career hinges on ruthlessness, that’s a slice of disaster.

Tough, take-charge Gabby intends to put her family’s restaurants back in the black, and that means no distractions. But somehow Shane keeps getting to the part of her that no one else sees—enticing her to lean on him. To trust him. That could be the biggest mistake Gabby and her business ever made…or a recipe for something truly spectacular.

DNF at 60%

I couldn't take the hero. He's been lying to the heroine, Gabby, from the start, working undercover to get dirt on her family's restaurant so his father's company and client can swoop in and take them over, while falling in love with her. They both declare their feelings for each other, hero seems to want to make some changes in his life yet he's still stealing and being deceitful to Gabby and putting her family's chain of restaurants at risk.

I can't take the lying, mixed in with the "I love you's" and Shane's vulnerability (gag) followed by Shane lifting work related items from Gabby’s home the night after he and Gabby have sex and then thinking that he didn't know really why he did it, other than force of habit. Yeah, this isn't a hero I want to read more about. (Goodreads review posted here.)

1 comment:

  1. I didn't know Maya Banks has moved from E novels to rom! But I agree with you there, sister, I hate insta-love stories, and the "I must get you to bed I can't think of anything else but shagging you" men are just ridiculous. -_-


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