***BOOK CONTAINS EXPLICIT CONTENT***
3 stars since it was actually a good story-just SO much porn. Unnecessary, gratuitous, graphic and explicit sex.
Okay, let me start this by reminding you, dear reader, that I get books from everywhere: library, bookstore, online, publishers, friends, authors, thrift stores. I read one, I write a post about it. Good, bad, meh; whatever it is, I just write down what I personally thought about it. Maybe you will want to read it-maybe not.
This book was an ARC or Advance Reader Copy from the publisher. Publishers want people to read their books and stir up some buzz before it is released. How it works is, I basically put my name in the hat (at #NetGalley for this one) and if I am chosen as a reader, they send me a copy. That’s what happened here. I read the summary and thought, “What a fun book! Vienna, a hotel, a romance, a mystery-sign me up.” And they did. In the meantime, I read other reviews and they were 4 and 5 stars, and the book sounded so good. I kept saying to myself I can’t wait for this book. It’s set in the 1870’s, winter, BALL season in Vienna, romance, mystery; I was like a broken record wanting to read this book!
Then it showed up in my Kindle. And I started reading it. It was SO GOOD-Maria is working as hard as she can to bring her family hotel back to its former glory. Her family is weird and interesting in a good way. There is a handsome American spy that we know she is going to fall madly in love with. There is intrigue, drama, humor, someone is trying to kill Maria. Is it connected to Eli and his investigation into the secret code theft or to a family secret of Maria? Oh, it was wonderful as this story unfolded.
P O R N
Yep, out of the blue there was an explicit sex scene that was so unexpected and so obscene that I was shocked. I don’t shock easily, and I don’t think I’m a prude, but this one was just odd. I skimmed over it and it happened again so I skimmed over it, again. All the while, the actual plot is really good. Just the sex was out of place here. If you don’t mind skimming through the filth-the book is very good.
Now I want to circle back around to reading other reviews. The only mention of the raw sex gently couched it as “spicy”. Um, spicy is nothing compared to this! Every review posted so far has been positive-and it should be, the book is good. So, is it me? Maybe I am a prudish old lady. This book was a freebie so it’s no skin off my nose-if I had paid for it I would be demanding a refund. I was delighted to read it (thank you #NetGalley) and enjoyed the story, just not the porn. So, what say you, dear reader?