Warning: This may contain what some may consider spoilers.
I have always been one of those people that considered DNF-ing a book to be a very big deal. I get upset when I read reviews where people are berating the author and crucifying the book, even more so when they give it a rating when they haven't completed the book. (This is a personal thing and I am in no way saying that people are wrong for doing this. It's just not the way I do things.) It's easy for some - they get through the first couple of chapters and know it's not for them, either because of grammar and punctuation issues, poor writing, horrible characters, or just not the type of book they like, so they put it away, never to pick it up again.
I guess my problem is that I feel guilty (I'm Catholic, guilt is what we do haha). Not just for not finishing the book, but for not liking it as well, especially if it's given to me free by the author. I simply move them to a folder on my Kindle, somewhere where they are out of the way, but also easy to find when I am ready to attempt digging into them again. (To date, there are only two books that have ever been in this folder - and both are still there.) I remind myself that one of my favorite books is a book that I just could not get into at first - it's all about timing, mood, likes and dislikes, attention span, etc.
Today I am reviewing my very first OFFICIAL DNF-ed book. (Note: I did not rate it on Goodreads or BookLikes, and I chose not to include my review on Amazon or Barnes & Noble because a rating is required on those sites.)
I just could not read any further than 12% - and I was forcing myself before that.
I received this book from a publisher that I have worked with several times. They do romance, of one variation or another, so I am very careful to read the genres they have selected, as well as the full book description, to get an idea of what I am getting myself into before I accept it as an r2r. This one was listed as paranormal, romance and fantasy, and based on the book description, I decided to give it a try. (Before writing this review, which is not easy, I looked at Amazon and Goodreads to see what people rated the book and, seeing that it has a bunch of 4s and 5s, I must be the only one who feels this way, so if you're into the kind of things that I'm describing, you may just love this book.)
The storyline is a unique and intriguing idea that, in my opinion, was completely ruined by page after page of lust. Not romance. LUST. And seriously - it is on EVERY page. They are constantly looking at each other in sexual ways, thinking sexual thoughts - and the paranormal (actually, supernatural and vampire) parts seem to be just stuck in to all that nonsense to give it more than just lust lust lust. She is supposed to be a "medical research scientist," but comes across as really air-headed and stupid. I usually like the sarcastic characters, even if they are the bad guys that I am supposed to hate, but she just comes across as annoying and not humorous in the slightest. The two cops that come to question her in the hospital are idiotic, unprofessional and seem to be VERY new on the job - poor Houston Police Department, to be depicted this way. Nikolai is an "elite law enforcer" and yet he seems to not have a clue what he's doing either. All he knows is that he's drawn to her and then their souls combine and he's supposed to kill her and blah blah blah blah blah. The only character I found remotely interesting was Aleksandra, but I'm not actually sure who she is, other than she's very sexual towards Nikolai for the possibly five minutes she's in the story up to the point I finally had to quit.
What made me decide to quit this one while others sit in that folder awaiting my return?
Well, I'll tell you.
They're in a hotel, hiding from the bad guys, and she takes a shower because she is still covered by her own blood. (On a side note, they actually check into the hotel and no one even gives her a sideways glance.) And they are tied together with some magic rope (or something). When she is almost done, he gets in - IN ALL HIS NAKED GLORY - and she quickly gets out. And then ... horrors of horrors ... it is implied, by the jerking motion her arm (that is tied to his) keeps making, that while he is in the shower, he is pleasuring himself - for so long that she falls asleep laying on the floor next to the tub.
WHAT does that have to do with the story?
Is that supposed to be attractive - to her and to the reader?
Is she supposed to fall head over heels in love with him now?
She's already veering in that direction, knowing nothing about him at all, based solely on the fact that he is gorgeous and "perfect." And she has checked out (and thought about, as the author shared with us) every inch of his body.
Have you noticed that "heroes" are rarely pudgy guys, wearing glasses, possibly with a receding hairline, that read a lot, are a little introverted, and were probably in band and/or played D&D when they were in high school? Instead they're always "perfection." What's up with that?
I'm just left ... disappointed ...
Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.