Monday, June 06, 2011

Accidental Mistress by Susan Napier

Accidental Mistress (Modern Romance Series Extra)Accidental Mistress by Susan Napier

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Accidental Mistress was a nice Sunday afternoon read. I love settling down with a Harlequin Presents on the weekend, because they are quick, hopefully satisfying reads. In this case, I was about 90% satisfied.

I am a big fan of this author because she writes great heroes and heroines. Her heroines are nice, normal, and likable. They are attractive in a real world kind of way, but the hero seems crazy about them (I love besotted heroes). They are women you'd want to be friends with in real life. I definitely felt that way about Emily.

Usually, I am seriously crazy about Susan Napier's heroes. They are big, handsome (in a manly way), hard working and down to earth, and have a normal quotient that is higher than the typical HP hero. They are guys you'd want to crush on in real life, and would love to be pursuing you. In this case, I didn't go as gaga over Ethan as I usually do over her heroes. Not that he was bad. He wasn't. I just never really got a fix on him. I think the problem was that there was a prominent storyline about Emily's parents and her relationship with Ethan's uncle by marriage. My personal opinion is that it was too much to put in this story and have the romance stay focused. I guess I'm used to SN putting the romance as the forefront, and it was weird that it had to share time with Emily's family issues.

I think I was kind of disappointed with how things wrapped up. Ethan and Emily end up becoming lovers but plays out almost like they are just hooking up when they each have time for each other kind of thing. And I didn't really understand why, since it was clear that Emily loved Ethan, and he seemed besotted with her. I didn't get it a first, but apparently Ethan didn't want to reciprocate in his "I love yous" because of his commitment issues. I think the problem was I didn't get that Ethan was supposed to have commitment issues. He was pursuing Emily big time and when they got together, it's like the affair lost momentum. I thought maybe Emily was being insecure, but then it turns out she was right that Ethan didn't want to be in love with her, and he comes to his senses at the very end of the book. It just seemed too abrupt, and it didn't work for me this way. It wasn't bad, mind you, but just sort of a lukewarm conclusion to this story. Emily ended up coming to Ethan's house to give him something that has high sentimental value for a substantial favor he does her, and he pounces on her and makes his declaration. He should have come after her, darn it! That's what I want to see. The hero needs to make those gestures, or this reader is disappointed. I did think it was cute they way he proposed though. Emily's last name is Quest, and Ethan's last name is West, a source of confusion throughout this book.

Here is the passage where this happens:

"I mean that I love you, Ms. West." she thought she heard him say.

Her loving laughter echoed in the warm cavern of his mouth. "That's Quest, not West."

He fell down with her onto the white couch and lay her against his heart. "What say we clear up that potential confusion for once and for all?"

"And how do you propose to do that?" She invited huskily, linking her arms around his neck.

His eyes gleamed with wicked humour. "Why by proposing, or course...that we get rid of that pesky and divisive Q!"

It was goofy but cute.

Anyway, this was a good book, but not great by this very reliable author. All the same, a nice past-time on a lazy Sunday afternoon. By the way, the title is very inaccurate!

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