>> Sunday, September 22, 2002
"Restaurant owner Verity Ames tries to resist the tempting advances of her charming new employee, Jonas Quarrel, but when his past catches up with him, only Verity's kisses can save him."I'd already read the sequel years ago, Gift of Fire, and I'd loved it.
Gift of Gold is vintage Krentz. An A- This is what is missing in the books she's published ever since 1996, this high level of emotion in the characters. The characters in post- 1996 books are almost cold, whereas she had accustomed me to characters who deeply need and want each other. They (like Jonas here) need each other to literally hang on to their sanity and live a normal life.
Obviously, I loved Verity and Jonas. I'm sure I'll be revisiting them in Gift of Fire very, very soon. Their relationship was lovely (except for the ass-spanking scene!), with all the raw emotion I've mentioned.
The suspense subplot, with the psychometry element was excellent. This is how a paranormal element should be handled. It was always there, taking the forefront at appropriate times, and leaving the centre stage (but staying there) for the characters and the rest of the plot when necessary. Very often, authors (I'm thinking of Josie Litton's Viking trilogy, for instance) will set the stage for a very interesting paranormal element and then completely forget it when the suspense plot starts to get interesting.
Also, Krentz does the "theme" thing very well in her books, using something (the Italian Renaissance, in this case) in analogies and descriptions throughout the whole book. It works for her, but I can just imagine the weird images someone who's not such a good writer would come up with.
I felt really sorry for Caitlin, but the way she was ready to use Jonas and Verity put her beyond the pale, IMO. I wouldn't have forgiven her.