So yesterday, I completely freaked out, thinking I had let down an author (not that they really have time to notice crap like this) by not finishing my review of Beauty Secrets in time. In reality, my spotlight post was early, and the review wasn't due until today, because I spent all day yesterday in some sort of parallel universe where my date was wrong. All. Day.
Here is my review of Beauty Secrets, by Jill Elaine Hughes. My spotlight post was early. See how on top of things I am?
It wasn't hard to devour this book. The writing was good. Really good. Characters were well-developed, mulit-dimensional, and to some point, relatable. As it's being marketed as a comedy, I think I was expecting it to be funnier, but since I've been saving my last two pennies to rub together for far too long, I think some of the things that were supposed to be funny about the recession just struck me as all too real, and quite sad. But that's just my own point of view.
Amanda, the main female character reminded me a little too much of my sister-in-law in regards to keeping up appearances to be funny. I didn't want to relate to her at all, because my mind kept saying, "OMG, That's Noel. Ugh..." which, if you think about it, is actually a good thing. The author managed to invoke strong feelings about her characters, they were that well drawn out.
George, the main male character, was a dichotomy of ideals. He's a ruthless merger/acquisitions man, who should be all alpha male dominant. That's what I was expecting, anyway. Instead, he's polite, painfully shy, and prone to panic attacks. It was a refreshing change.
There were a couple of instances where I felt the sex was gratuitous, not that I minded, per se, I just couldn't see the motivation behind it, until afterward in all the self-talk with the characters. The sex was great, don't get me wrong, just a little, tiny bit of WTF just happened?
The bad guys were most excellent. Realistic motivations, over the top actions, definitely unhinged. The author created wonderful tension and a feeling of "Oh hell, what's going to happen next?"
And the ending was really well done. So often, romances end on a cheesy note, but this one minimized the cheeziness and managed to wrap up the loose ends nicely in a way that held true to the tone of the rest of the book.
This is definitely a book I would recommend to my friends who enjoy romance. It was really really really good.
Keep scrolling for deets about the book, Beauty Secrets, by Jille Elaine Hughes, including the links to purchase it. My copy was an Advanced Review Copy, given in exchange for an honest review.