Caught in a frustrating relationship with a man who can’t accept her for who she is, passionate, flame-haired violinist Summer Zahova finds release in her music. She spends her afternoons playing for money in the London Underground, lost in the works of Vivaldi or Mendelssohn. When her violin is damaged beyond repair, Summer receives a surprising proposition from Dominik, a university professor with powerful desires, who has been captivated by Summer ever since he heard her perform. Dominik will replace her priceless violin, but only if she agrees to play for him in a private concert. Unable to deny the chemistry between them, Dominik and Summer embark on an intense affair full of daring twists and turns, as unpredictable as it is thrilling. For Summer it is a chance to finally embrace her long-denied dark side, but she’ll soon learn that where there’s pleasure there must be pain. Can a relationship born of such all-consuming passion ever really survive? Exhilarating, seductive, and tantalizingly bold, Eighty Days Yellow will leave you breathless for more.
As I read this book I kept wondering when the author would connect the two main characters. I realized that due to the subject matter that they would not fall passionately in love, marry have 2.5 kids and live happily ever after. But there was nothing in this book that explained why these two got together and more importantly why the reader should care about them singly or as partners.
The author followed a trend that seems to becoming more common. She made the female character an idiot. And a dis-likable idiot at that. She could be naive, innocent, unworldly, but she had to have at least something like a brain to be human. I got so tired of her asking herself why she was doing the stupid things she did. I got tired of her fretting over whether to admit or say out loud the most mundane things. I especially got tired of her failure to stand up for herself. By the time she finally did, at the end of the book, her courage was unbelievable, because no one with her personality would ever do so. If the author had worked a little harder to give her a little bit of intelligence, a little ability to think for herself, a little personality, the book might have been a little believable.
The male character is more like a placeholder. He also has no personality, no self-worth and no life. We know virtually nothing about him, or what motivates him to do what he does. Most importantly he came across as the most boring man in the world. So dull it is hard to imagine he has the intelligence to be a college professional. So dull he was almost invisible.
The plot made no sense and actions occurred that seemed design to move the story along, that were never explained, never tied to anything and appeared completely irrelevent. Why talk about travel to her, sound like he was going to invite her then not. I thought this decision had some meaning that would be revealed later. I thought it might drive the plot but it never explains why the subject was even discussed. Why be with her best friend when he didn't like her?
The only aspect of the story that was worse than the main characters was the secondary characters. They were all mean, hateful and manipulative. Anyone who spent time with them would have to be as awful as they were just to stand their presence.
There were no sympathetic characters in this book. Saying there were any characters in the book at all is being generous.
Another book about a relationship between an older "intelligent" yet dysfunctional man - but in this case there is no sign of intelligence - and a doormat. Is there a point to this trend? Or more importantly an end?
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