Tuesday, May 30, 2006

From the First

This one's for Sybil

A while ago I saw this book mentioned on Sybil’s blog and while I’m not exactly saying I didn’t really read her whole blog, I didn’t really read it and thought she was recommending this book. For those who really didn’t read that blog – Jessica Bird is also JR Ward of the Brotherhood fame. Well, based on the fact that I thought she was recommending this book, I broke my non-series Harlequin rule (see – I’ve been protesting ever since they ended the Temptation Line) and got it. I finally got around to reading it and actually I quite enjoyed it. The current ATBF (not the one Karen wrote – but the newest one *grin *) is on books with good guy think. I mentioned this book since I had just finished reading it and rather than repeat myself – I’ll just copy. Here’s a brief bit of what I said

First off, I really enjoyed the book – I want to make that clear. It’s the first Harlequin I’ve read by her and it has me searching out her other ones – but – and a big but here, while I was reading (and enjoying) it, I wondered how realistic parts of it were. The hero had had a major thing for the heroine for years but she was married to his best friend. The best friend dies and I’m trying to avoid spoilers here, the hero doesn’t feel worthy of the heroine’s love. There is a scene in the book where they are doing more than swapping spit as the expression goes. And he stops. He stops before finishing if you get my drift. While part of me sighed at the sign that this was one tortured hero, the more realistic, living in the real world part of me thought “yea, right! As if that would happen in real life”. Later on in the book the hero confessed to the heroine his undying love and told her that he hadn’t ‘been with a woman’ in six year because all he thought of was her. Again, while the romantic in me melted, the realist in me didn’t believe it for a moment. On top of this, it’s been six years and nowhere in the book does he “take things in hand” so to speak. I didn’t find that at all believable. But then this was a Harlequin so I don’t know if they do things like that. But like I said, I did enjoy the book. As to the rest of the book, I think she got the guy down pretty good. He was alpha and didn’t ‘share’ his feelings with the heroine.

So that doesn’t tell much about the book so here’s a bit more. This is the third in a series and is the story of Alex Moorehouse and Cassandra Cutler. Alex is a yacht-racing guru who was injured and is recuperating at the family farm. Cassandra is the widow of his best friend who decides to accept a renovations job. I got a bit muddled in characters as this is the third in a series and the characters from the previous two books are involved in this one too. The book is abound with romance book clichés – again I won’t give them away – but still it was written in a way that I liked it. I’m rare I think in that at times I don’t mind clichés. I think those who don’t like them could have a field day here. Still as I said, I liked it well enough to hunt down her other harlequins. I think of harlequins a quick light lunch (or sometimes cotton candy) not to filling, but occasionally it hits the spot.

Grade 3 ½ out of 5


jmc said...

I picked up a copy of From the First a while back because I wanted to compare voices and styles for Bird/Ward. Eh, they seemed very different, although comparing one category to two single titles isn't really a significant sample.

I was a little less enchanted by FtF than you. The issue that you posted about to the ATBF board was one niggle for me, and then the ending jumped on one of my hot button issues. I'll probably give Bird's categories another try if I see them at the library (I liked Spike the secondary character, who seemed bound for his own book), but I didn't like FtF to add Bird's categories to by TBB list.

Kristie (J) said...

JMC: now that it's not on the main part :)

I can say that my eyes did a 360 when bingo!!! she turns up preggers from a non-completion. Yea, yeah I know that can happen in real life and goodness knows young people should be made fully aware of this - but still - can we say cliche!!!

sybil said...

Bird is the first person to say these and the Brotherhood are completely different book. WAY different.

But I think that is cool.

And would say it is worth getting the other two if you at all enjoyed this one. It is very cliched. But I think Harq just are. The thing is taking those cliche's and making them entertaining and work.

I need to get this one still, but finish His Comfort and Joy not too long ago. Will blog about it shortly.

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