Saturday, August 2, 2014

Patrycja's Review: Shameless by Nina Lema


Title: Shameless
Series: Standalone
Author: Nina Lemay
Release Date: August 18, 2014
Rating: 3.5 stars
Cliffhanger:. No
~New Adult Contemporary Romance -- recommended for mature readers~ 

Girls like me don’t get happy endings. 

 I know what I am. At worst a cliché, at best a cautionary tale. I put an international border between me and my past, only to wind up working in a low-end titty bar. Even my excuse is as lame as it gets: I’m paying for college, getting my art degree from Montreal’s most prestigious school. Although some days it becomes confusing: am I just a student who moonlights as a stripper, or a stripper who masquerades as a student?

But the inevitable happens and my two lives collide. And now there’s one other person who knows both the quiet, antisocial Hannah and the sensual, shameless Alicia. One person who keeps my secret. 
He’s beautiful, he’s sophisticated. He comes from the other side of life, the one where I’m not wanted or accepted. But he calls me la petite Américaine, and his hot, hot hands on my skin promise me things I long ago gave up on. The problem? He teaches my Classic Photography class. 

This is a standalone novel, no series, no cliffhanger

When I decided to give Shameless a go, I was hesitant and not sure if I would find it right up my alley. Reading stripper books is risky. It’s just so very easy to mess them up badly, that I tend to be careful and usually don’t even read them. Yet, something in the blurb drew me in and I thought ‘okay, I will do this!’

Now, after finishing, I must say that I had definitely enjoyed it, I just had some minor troubles with the plot – that’s why the 3.5 star rating. Maybe Shameless wasn’t exactly the book I had fallen in love with, but it was definitely a good read that pulled me out of my reading funk, which means something to me.

Told from Hannah’s point of view, Nina Lemay’s novel grabbed my attention from the beginning. This story is about a girl who thinks of herself as of the biggest cliché ever; oh another one college student paying of her education by doing lap dances and showing her boobs. Nothing out of ordinary, nothing worth talking about.

“I’m ready to embody the cliché of the stripper-paying-for-her-education.”

But with crazy pink hair, tattoos and small breasts Hannah is not exactly your typical stripper; she certainly doesn’t look like one.

One night, just before new school years begins, Hannah is paid to dance for a guy with knuckle tattoos; Libre Choix they say. The man didn’t look very comfortable with her writhing right on his lap. And next she knows, the guy is her photography teacher.

Emmanuel is older, sophisticated artist; what’s more he’s totally forbidden – not only did he was Hannah’s client (whom she never dates) but he’s also her teacher.

Quickly, they find themselves in situations that set them on fire. Despite the danger of being find out, Emmanuel and Hannah start steamy relationship, that changes with passing time.

“We may it now, but we’ll both regret it. We didn’t start out as equals. It didn’t start well, and it’s not going to end well”.

I find writing 3 and 3.5 star reviews the hardest; it’s not easy to show that I really liked the book despite the issues that made me lower my rating.

Mostly, I had trouble with growing to like Hannah’s way of thinking. She certainly wasn’t bad character, just naïve and annoying at times. I wished she would have been a little bit more mature and stopped hiding. There were situations where I was one step from rolling my eyes at her or telling her to grow some balls.

Emmanuel was nice.. and I think that’s my biggest problem with him. He was only nice, nothing more. And I anticipated more complicated and complex character.

Shameless is one of those books in between. Nina Lemay’s novel was good read, I was absorbed by the story and had fun, but it just wasn’t something that would make my heart skip a beat. Yet it was steamy enough to satisfy, perfectly angsty and while both characters seemed a tad bit melodramatic, I can wholeheartedly recommend this to all of you who enjoy forbidden romance stories.

*ARC kindly provided by author, Nina Lemay, in exchange for honest review *


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