Saturday, January 28, 2017

Sparrow - L. J. Shen

SparrowThis was the buddy read for January 2017 in the Unapologetic Romance Readers group on Goodreads.  It took me a while to get around to reading it, but I finally approached it without actually knowing anything about it.  Yeah, I hadn't even read the sentences on the going into this, I had no idea that it was a mafia romance.  I clearly know that now, and before I dig into this review, I'm going to have to say this: mafia/mob romances are clearly not my genre.

The story here starts with Troy Brennan, the hero, killing a priest.  Things pretty much go downhill from there when he forces Sparrow Raynes, the daughter of one of his dead mobster father's employees, to marry him.  Sparrow has no idea why this is.  But she's totally hot for Troy and he's hot for her.  Cue drama.

I have serious reservations about the characters in this book.  Clearly the book starting with the hero murdering one person and talking about the very brutal murder of another isn't a great start.  And then there's his mistress and the way he taunts Sparrow with her.  Does he cut this relationship off eventually?  Yes.  But not until significantly after his marriage to Sparrow.  There's a lot I'm willing to tolerate in a romance hero, because it's fiction and escapism and all, but infidelity and outright murder are two of the things on my very short "absolutely not" list.  And then there's Sparrow herself.  While she professes to be deeply disturbed by Sparrow's actions, she doesn't actually appear to be very disturbed.  When he ultimately confesses the murders to her, she's actually elated because he told her, rather than being worried about what these past actions might mean for her.  And then there's the end... Sorry to anyone who feels differently, but I have deep concerns about that.  Because if a guy is willing to kill for you, I don't think there's anything to stop him from killing you if you do something he doesn't like.  And that's not hot at all.

The writing here is fine.  People who like rough sex and danger will probably like this.  The side plot is pretty see-through, with the person who called the hit on Troy's father being pretty evident from the beginning, but I guess that's not the main appeal here.  I think that people who like this genre and legit bad boys will probably like this, but I also think that I've pretty clearly established that this is not my genre, and I didn't really enjoy reading this much at all.

2 stars out of 5.

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