The romance genre covers a range of different styles and sub-genres, such as the sweeping, epic drama style, the steamy suspense thriller style, the pure erotica style and the Hollywood gloss fantasy style. This is predominantly the latter, although it isn’t located in the superficial setting of Jackie Collins books. The two primary protagonists are hugely talented and, of course, irresistibly gorgeous artists, at the top of their game, mixing with the very best of the set. Naturally, even though they can both very clearly pick and choose lovers from any of their peers, they choose each other. And so begins a very quickly pretty serious, erotically-charged fling. Other than that, there isn’t really too much more going on in Eyes of the Beholder.
Swinn Daniels brings a few standard trope elements into the mix: jealous exes, a politically correct and infallible heroine, a mystery backstory, etc., and it is the last of these which I ultimately had the biggest issue with. I’m not going to spoil this book in any way, but I do feel dutybound to advise you that it is open-ended, and there is a sub-plot which is in its early developing stages. In other words, expect to be engaged in a series for the long haul if you want resolutions. I don’t like that without prior warning, I have to admit.
Some of the more fantastical tropes include a multi-million-dollar tiara being erotically sported and the lead male’s martial arts training under a Chinese master; Bruce Wayne sprung to mind, and he was a comic book character. I’m just messing, I mean no offence, but this gives you an indication of the level of fantasy romance we’re talking about here.
Daniels is okay, and the book is too. He is a pretty capable author. As I said, the story is pure indulgent romance, a pretty flat and linear narrative with the emphasis on glamour, lust and tough, sexy characters, rather than an unfolding storyline. It is quite raunchy at times, and might appeal to you if you like that sort of thing. I would say fans of this specific genre will prefer it, because it’s more of the same for them; indeed, I once knew a middle-aged woman who had shelves and shelves of these books, and always one in her hand. If you’re expecting something original, unique and ground-breaking, of course this isn’t it. What it is is a half-decent book in the mould of the erotic movies of the ‘80s, though perhaps without the danger or suspense element. One for the legitimate fans of the type, I would say. I’m not really one of them, I will admit, but I can certainly acknowledge the author’s ability to craft a narrative and develop characters. But if you don’t want to invest in a series, then don’t start this one.
In : Book Reviews
Tags: swinn-daniels erotic drama steamy romance glamorous