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Monday, November 14, 2016

Release & Review - The Prince's Plan by E.M. Youman

Image and blurb from Goodreads
Title: The Prince's Plan
Author: E.M. Youman
Publication date: February 7th, 2017
Category/Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
She can’t trust him…or her desire for him.

Marnie Ducello is way past second chances. Most days she’s fighting to forget the past and stay sober—a combination she doesn’t always pull off. She’s done waiting for Prince Charming. So when a sexy stranger turns out to be an arrogant, cab-stealing jerk, Marnie isn’t surprised. If only her rash reaction to his rudeness hadn’t resulted in her arrest. . .

Singer Danny Roland is no prince. He has fame, fortune, and a not-so-hidden addiction. He’s running from memories of the lives he’s ruined. Keeping his personal demons under control and out of the tabloids is what Danny wants more than anything. After a simple drug deal goes very wrong, Danny decides to make karmic amends—by finding the woman he abandoned to the police. Marnie’s a recovering addict, too, so he offers her the deal of a lifetime: a job as his personal assistant and a safe space in his home to live in if she stays sober.

Marnie is soon swept up into Danny’s world of prying paparazzi and vengeful exes. She can’t help the burning attraction between them, but she can’t trust Danny—or herself. And when Danny’s brother begins to pursue her, Marnie and Danny must both come to terms with the painful secrets that haunt them. They’re both broken…but maybe together they can be unbreakable.
2 “Sex, drugs and a little music” Stars

ARC provided by the author.

Thank you.

Here’s another book I expected to love based on premise and great ratings on Goodreads, but couldn’t connect at all.

The premise is quite promising: two broken people trying to get past their addiction and start a new life get together and fall in love. The problem is, 50% into the book and there isn’t a sign these two are falling in love.

This review is about to get spoilery, so… warning:

Don’t get what I said about the “falling in love” part wrong because I’m not a insta-love fan at all. Having said that, by the time I’m reaching halfway into a romance story, I want these people to have developed strong feelings for each other if they’re not already acting on those feelings. Instead of having that, though, we have the LI having sex with someone else in front of the MC.

I mean… That’s a big no in romance books, isn’t it? Well, it has to be.

When I pick up a contemporary romance title, I don’t want to see the LI and the MC having said with anyone else, unless it’s a ménage story or it features a love triangle; but none of that represents The Prince’s Plan.

And that’s not the only problem I had with the book.

For starters, I believe this story suffers from the “started too early” syndrome. The author didn’t need the first few chapters or Danny’s (the LI) country singer girlfriend at all. The book could’ve easily started with Danny getting in trouble because of relapse, risking his sister’s safety and then having a wake-up. Everything else felt unnecessary and just prolonged what I really wanted to see: Marnie and Danny together. Plus, again, I didn’t want to see Danny having sex with a third person.

My second and probably biggest problem was Marnie. I simply couldn’t connect with her whatsoever. I didn’t find her likable and I struggled with her lack of conviction or desire to get out of the life she was living. I wanted her to want to fight, and for the first half of the book she simply didn’t. It just got on my nerves that she had that opportunity handed to her and at the first sign of someone offering her drugs, she was more than ready to take them. Sure relapses are part of an addict’s story, and it made for good drama, but it could’ve worked a lot better if she had at least tried to resist it.

Danny wasn’t that much better. While his attitude toward drugs and his addiction was better than Marnie’s, the same can’t be said about his attitude toward women. I didn’t like how he treated his ex-girlfriend (no matter how awful she was), Marnie or his other hookups. How he acted like nothing was happening while he practically forced Marnie to stand in a room and talk to him while he was having sex with someone else? Disrespectful to all involved.

The side characters were also problematic, especially the women. For almost the entire first half of the book, the women seemed to pretty much hate or get jealous of Marnie; or they were pretty insane, like Danny's ex-girlfriend. Oh, well, that's a  very problematic portrayal, if you ask me.

And bringing in that super long flashback halfway through? Not the best way to keep me reading when I'm already having the problems mentioned above.

With the first half of the book focusing on everything else but the romance, and the characters not being likable enough to keep my attention, when the romance finally kicked in I was already disconnected from the story.

On the positive side, the writing was pretty solid. There were the eventual POV shifts, but other than that, the writing was good.

Again, I expected to really like this book and, if you can get past the issues I had with the story, you might, too. Just take a look at the other reviews before you make that call.

*If you liked this review (or not), if you read the book (or not), come say hello and leave your comments bellow.

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