Sunday, January 11, 2015

Christie's review: Holding Strong by Lori Foster


Title:Holding Strong
Series: Holding Strong #2
Author: Lori Foster
Release Date: April 1, 2015
Cliffhanger: no

An up-and-coming MMA fighter wants more than just one night from a woman fleeing her past in New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster's irresistible new novel.

Heavyweight fighter Denver Lewis plays real nice, but he doesn't share. That's why he's been avoiding top-notch flirt Cherry Peyton. But a man can only resist those lush curves for so long. Their encounter surpasses all his fantasies, bringing out protective urges that Cherry's about to need more than she knows…

Denver's combination of pure muscle and unexpected tenderness has been driving Cherry wild. Yet no sooner does she get what she's been craving than old troubles show up on her doorstep. And this time, Cherry can't hide behind a carefree facade. Because the man by her side is one who'll fight like hell to keep her safe…if only she'll trust him enough to let him…

I've been a staunch Lori Foster fan in the past, although it's been quite some time since I've read a new book from her. If anyone would ask me my opinion on her writing, I would give a glowing recommendation to give her books a try. That's why it pains me to say that this book in particular was completely and totally off the mark for me, personally. From page one, Chapter one, I felt an immediate dislike for the hero AND the heroine and my feelings only increased the more I read. My personal tastes require a strong heroine with confidence and self-respect. My hero needs to be strong in personality. He can be dominant and controlling, or alpha, as we romance readers like to call them. But there's a fine line between alpha and a controlling, rude jerk. And unfortunately, not only did I feel that the heroine came off as a pushover and weak, but the hero came off as a narcissist and judgmental to the point of excess. Then put them together, and you have a combination that utterly turned me off.

Another huge problem for me that I could not get past was the fact that there was absolutely NO build-up before the main characters hooked up. There was no anticipation, tension, no conflict. I felt that the heroine's only necessary trait in the hero was his physical appearance, and vice versa. They were all about mutually admiring each other's bodies and not much else. The basic foundation for their relationship was purely lust, which left me feeling no excitement for them at an emotional level.

I would still read more from this author, but in this case, it was a clear disappointment.


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