Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Utterly Charming by Kristine Grayson

Author: Kristine Grayson
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanka
Date: October 1, 2011
Pages: 320/512 KB
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased for Kindle
Reviewed by: Lyuba

Sexual Content
None, aside from some suggestions. 

4.5 out of 5

Description from Goodreads
Bestselling author Kristine Grayson's fairy tale romances bring the classic stories into the present day, where fairy tale characters must grapple with the complexities of modern life as well as their own destinies.
This time when Sleeping Beauty wakes up, she wants nothing to do with the man who kissed her. Consoling Alex Blackstone, the rejected suitor who is a brilliant magician but inept when it comes to women, falls to modern career woman and lawyer, Nora Barr. Nora now has to deal with Beauty's evil stepmother, and the discovery that Alex just might be her own personal Prince Charming...

Wait, is this supposed to be book 1 in the Fates series? Then I must be missing something, because I read Wickedly Charming first and was waiting for this book to come out. Well, I do not claim to know how the book world works, and for all I know, this could be a re-release. 

I actually did not pick this book right away, even if I absolutely loved Wickedly Charming. The reason? The blurb didn't exactly appeal to me for some reason, so I let it pass by until I've noticed that this book is on special for $2.99 and I figured what's the heck. So I've bought it, and I'm glad! 

I think the book blurb is rather misleading, because the book itself deals with Nora a lot more than it deal with the Sleeping Beauty. And Nora doesn't console Alex Blackstone, she spends the whole book fighting her attraction to him. And unlike many, many, many other romance books I've read, she doesn't give in to it just because Blackstone is drop dead gorgeous. This alone, was like a breath of fresh air for me. I'm so used to women simply loosing their heads in the proximity of the main hot guy, that here I was cheering for Nora. 

Of course everything works out at the end, but Kristine Grayson skillfully does it without an ounce of sex involved. I was pretty impressed by that. I was also pretty impressed by Nora. She tickled my feminist mind in all the right places, by asking all the questions I want to ask so many other female characters. Like, what about what SHE wants? Is it HER decision? She also has a very strong sense of ethics, and her struggle with wanting to do what's right made her seems extremely real to me. It was almost like I could meet someone like her in person. 

Blackstone was great too, because I could actually see him grow and change as the book progressed. I could relate to their romance, because I know how it feels to want someone that you're deeply attracted to, while knowing that he/she is just out of your reach for whatever reason (and while suspecting that the person is also attracted to you). 

The supporting characters were great, especially Sancho Panza. I even kinda liked the main villainess in the story, and early on I thought there would be more to her than there ended up being. 

Overall, it was a great read. The book kept my attention and I couldn't put it down until I finished it. 

At first I couldn't even come up with any, but after thinking for a while I think I know some little things that I wish were in the book. More Sancho!!! I felt like there was a lot more story to him, and while Ms. Grayson hinted at it, she never developed anything further. At the end, I felt something along the lines of BUT WHAT ABOUT SANCHO?! 

Recommended For
Anyone who wants to read a romance book without having sex as a driving force in the story. 

~ Lyuba

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