His Every Kiss, by Laura Lee Guhrke

>> Wednesday, November 16, 2005

His Every Kiss (excerpt, etc), by Laura Lee Guhrke sounded delightfully different. And LLG is an author I've enjoyed in the past, so...

Everyone knows about Dylan Moore—his brilliant talent and his pleasure-seeking ways—but no one knows the torment that lies beneath his reckless veneer. Only one woman gets a glimpse of the forces that drive Dylan’s soul, a woman who haunts his dreams and evokes his passions as no other woman ever has before.

Disgraced and destitute, Grace Cheval wants nothing to do with the seductive man who desires her. When Dylan offers her a position as governess to his newfound daughter, she knows his true intentions are dishonorable. Yet she finds this charismatic man hard to resist, and she returns his passionate kisses with a fire that matches his own. Can Dylan dare hope that this proud, spirited beauty will melt the ice around his heart?
To be honest, I have mixed feelings about this one. On one hand, it is fresh and different, and I truly enjoyed myself while I was reading it. On the other, I never did completely warm up to the hero, and the romance ended up not really working for me. A B.

The book engaged me from the very first scene, in which recently widowed Grace Cheval comes across famous composer Dylan Moore about to shoot himself. Dylan is suffering from a condition called tinnitus (a ringing in the ears) since he fell off a horse, and hasn't been able to compose a single note ever since. Having suddenly lost what was the very cornerstone of his life, he finds no reason to keep on living.

But when he sets eyes on Grace, all of a sudden, he can hear music again. This gives him a certain hope for the future, and his determination to kill himself is forgotten.

Fast-forward 5 years, and Dylan hasn't heard any more music. He has been on the lookout for Grace all along, when he sets eye on her in a party where she's playing her violin for the orchestra. Having found her, he refuses to let the woman he's come to think of as his muse go, and makes her an offer the destitute Grace can't refuse.

Dylan has recently been confronted with the fact that he has a daughter he never knew he had (an eight-year-old daughter, no less) and who he's now responsible for. His offer to Grace kills two birds with one stone. She's to be his daughter's governess, which guarantees Dylan access to her. He feels that, as long as he can make her stay in his presence for a while, he's bound to keep hearing the music she brings with her.

And as Grace and Dylan get to know each other, while leaving in close proximity, their relationship starts to develop. The characterization is great. Both Grace and Dylan are perfectly well-drawn individuals, with issues that ring completely true. Grace, for instance, is hesitant about being drawn into a relationship with Dylan because of her experiences with her artist late husband, who considered her his muse and then blamed her when things weren't going well. And Dylan's many-layered obsession with Grace, first as a source of music and then, increasingly, as a woman, felt right.

And here comes my problem with this book. The thing is that while I liked and understood Grace, I only understood Dylan. I didn't particularly like him, which isn't really a necessity for me in order to enjoy a book, but which helps me when it comes to loving a romance. But, even more problematic, the reason I didn't like Dylan all that much was one that kept me from believing that what he was feeling for Grace was love.

See, I thought Dylan was quite a selfish man. For me, something that characterizes love is that you want the other person to be happy, their feelings become a priority for you. And I always felt that, for Dylan, it was all about what he wanted and what he was feeling. I don't think he makes even one gesture in the whole book that benefits Grace and not himself.

So this is it. I'm not sure if it makes sense, but, while I quite enjoyed the book, I didn't really enjoy it as a romance.


Post a Comment

Blog template by simplyfabulousbloggertemplates.com

Back to TOP