What a great depiction of the evolution of love! Too often, romance novels focus on instant attraction to the detriment of mature commitment and self-sacrifice. Though the main characters in this book share an intense and exciting initiation into their acquaintance, the love story involves a journey of introspection and discovery about themselves and about each other. This pilgrimage from strangers to intimate friends and lovers felt very true to my own experience with my husband, something that did not match up to the hype of spark and fire all the time, but, with its share of excitement, also grew into a deep and lasting affection. The characters' love is much more realistic than most depictions while retaining a great deal of excitement and energy. Don't get discouraged when the characters marry half-way through the book! The suspense continues regardless! I wish I could give 4 and half stars, because I love the book, and my caveats are very small. 1. I am not one who enjoys hearing detailed descriptions of sexual encounters, though I give the author credit for developing these trysts in an intimate and satisfying way. 2. The buildup of action was so slow (in a good way) that I wanted an intense, breath-holding climax that resulted in a little heart pounding. Instead, I got a satisfying resolution that more swelled like a wave in the deep ocean than crashed over me like a tidal wave on shore. All that being said, I haven't felt sorry to see the end of a book for several months, but I miss this book already. I will be buying the next book.
After having just listened to a real stinker of a book, this book, Siren, was a great relief in its compelling and emotional suspense. Vanessa Sands is a very likable heroine, and her struggles and concerns wrapped me up quite successfully. I found the romance compelling - thank God the author forewent descriptive, gratuitous sex, though there is one episode that isn't described. Although I had guessed some of the ending before I read it, the relationships and action kept me engaged until the end.
My caveat, and the reason I only gave this 4 stars, is twofold:
1. Though I don't want to reveal too much, let's just say that I am a sucker for a nice wrapped-up package, and unless the author has a killer sequel that somehow miraculously extends out the resolution in a satisfactory manner, I did not like the very, very end. That does not take away from my recommendation for listening to the book.
2. A very small irritation, the narrator, though expressive, had weird, gasping little breaths that sometimes took away from my enjoyment of her narration. Also, some of the male voices came across as if she were reading the three bears and trying to do Papa Bear's gruff tone. Only slightly annoying.
Despite my very small dissatisfactions, I recommend this book for a good, fantasy-type novel with a bit of romance.
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