Best Laid Plans
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The Yellow Brick Road Gang, otherwise known as Metaphysical Misadventures in the Search for Enlightenment, was once just a book club. Now, they are a circle of friends as close as family. Together they embarked on a spiritual search - and throughout the last eight years each woman has come to realize that the only constant is change and that anything is possible. Cristine and her partner have always approached their relationship like a business, and Cristine prides herself on her cool-headed and logical thinking. But when Cristine's partner decides he doesn't want to renew their relationship contract, Cristine is devastated.
Trying to help her, the Yellow Brick Road Gang devises a ritual to bring Cristine a new lover: Mix cayenne pepper for hot passion and dried mustard for strength, add a tiny bit of mint for sweetness, then cast into a fire.
Enter Daniel Burns. He is no ordinary man. In fact, he isn't a man at all…
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"The Secret" as Chic Lit
Perhaps it was my expectations that doomed this book for me, but then again, maybe not. First of all, it is billed with a paranormal romance, but what I got from it was self help psychobabble mixed with Chic Lit.
Yes, there is a couple and they do fall in love, but that's really not the point of the book. In fact, it's almost a side story. There's no buildup, no real courtship and very little conflict between the couple, which are the keystones of a romance novel. No, this book is more about a woman on a path to "self discovery", with the love interest performing more as her guru than her lover. It's flavored with a heavy feminist message, and the enlightenment she is given could come straight from a chapter of "The Secret". So it's all about energy and creating your own reality through belief and positive thinking, that sort of thing.
This book also heavily focuses on "The Yellow Brick Road Gang", a group of friends who seem to have little to no purpose until 3/4's of the way through the book. There's lots of the hand holding female "my friends are my true family" bonding stuff throughout the book, in true chic lit fashion. Frankly, this was the best part of the book for me, and I'm not a real fan of chic lit.
There was also some sort of issue with the audio, causing it to skip in places. While this is not the readers fault, but more a fault of the editing, I still deducted points from the narration since there's nowhere to critique the editing. The narrator was fair, but she was inconsistent at times with the voices of the women (and women outnumbered men in this book by about 6 to 1), and that annoyed me. The only person she was consistent with was an African American character, but she gave her a voice that was stereotypical at best. There were also a number of pauses where pauses shouldn't be.
Bottom line; if you are thinking this book is a paranormal romance in the traditional sense, it's not. It's part "enlightenment self help" and part chic lit. If you are in to that sort of thing, maybe you'll love it. I'm not, and I didn't. Having said that, it wasn't terrible either, so I gave the story a fairly decent score.
4 people found this helpful
Not what I expected but good story.
I had never read or listened to any of Constance O'Day Flannery books before but because of previous reviews I decided to give them a go and I wasn't disappointed. It has a good mix story, romantic tension and the unexpected to make a good read. Will read more of her books in the future.