Friday, September 28, 2012

Sydney Harbour Hospital: Tom's Redemption

Sydney Harbour Hospital: Tom's Redemption by Fiona Lowe
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Hayley Grey is a Resident at Sydney Harbour Hospital, she is one exam away from being a qualified Surgeon. She is scared of the dark but other than that a good kick ass female main character. Tom Jordon, a Surgeon, has returned to Sydney from Perth where he had been recuperating for two years following an accident; a car banged into him when he was cycling.

We learn that Tom is gorgeous, a serious person whose focus has been 100% on his carear which is now not an option for him. So he is at the stage in his life where he is looking for what he wants to do now.

Enter Hayley into his life. They develop a friendship which grows to more...

This book is a fast read. I didn't really feel involved in the story which I think was mainly due to the length of the book not giving the author or reader time to really engaged in the story. Likewise, these two fairly interesting characters didn't get room to grow. Their bumps in their relationship seemed to be solved before you got a chance to fret for them.

The medical referencing was just enough to convince me they knew what they were doing without flowing the pages with terminology.

I enjoyed the book but it was just ok.

Monday, September 17, 2012

A Life Worth Living

A Life Worth Living by Lorrie Kraus

Dev Rating: ****
(Although, it didn't get super devy for me until the last third of the book)

I really enjoyed this book.

The first thing that really impressed me was how accurate all the details were. This is an author who definitely knows a lot about SCI (and when I interview her, I’m going to ask her about that!) From how the insurance works to ordering a wheelchair to the physical changes in how a paralyzed person knows when he needs to use the bathroom, it is all accurate. I really appreciate that real life issues of paraplegia were not glossed over.

I love the message that sometimes the best thing in your life comes from your plan for your life getting completely screwed up. Good is born from bad. I think that’s so true.

Ordinarily I don’t read new injury stories, as they tend to bore me. I’ve read so, so many books with disabled characters and that right-after-the-accident time tends to be all the same. I prefer a hero who has adjusted to his disability and has moved on with his life. Here, however, the little bit of a mystery about what really happened that night was enough to keep me engaged and moving forward.
I feel like the time Matt spent with the girl who was CLEARLY all wrong for him what too long. I was getting frustrated and fed up that he couldn't see that she wasn't the right person for him until page 300. Now, at page 300 the book became great, in my opinion. That's when it really became romantic and sexy and completely enjoyable. Basically it's when he begins the process of courting the girl that we all know is perfect for him.

 My only real criticism is a tiny one. There's talk about how he needs to order his own chair and he resists that for a long time. When he finally agrees to do it, we never see him actually get a new chair. So it didn't become clear to me that he was no longer using the hospital chair until there's a mention of him taking the wheels off when he gets in a car. It pulled me from the story a little to be wondering about that and I would have liked to see a scene with him getting the new chair, seeing how different it was from the hospital chair and how much easier it was to maneuver.

I would cry foul on how easy it was for Matt to get and maintain an erection, but because all the details of his injury were so very accurate it was easy for me to buy that he was lucky in his particular injury. Overall I really enjoyed this book, particularly, as I said, the last third of it. I'd highly recommend this to any dev. It's what a love story should be, I think!

 Read a longer review at my site: And an interview with the author will be up soon!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Vittorio's Woman

Vittorio's Woman
by Kinberley Reeves

Dev Rating: *

Lilly is a physical therapist, but she doesn't do it for money, she just really likes helping people. She gets a call from the sister of a man she saw once at a party and developed a huge crush on, Simon Vittorio. The sister says that Simon's had an accident and he's in despair. He needs a tough physical therapist to pull him from his depression and get him inspired to walk again. Simon has also been blinded by this accident, the characters hope temporarily. Little does Lilly know, Simon remembers her and has also been longing for her as much as she has for him. But he's driven away other psychical therapists and he's going to do the same to her by making her super uncomfortable sexually. (???)

The writing is fine. No glaring errors, nothing really wrong with it, but the book definitely left me feeling "meh." 

But oh my God, the cliches. Every single one of the romance genre seems to be present here:

-She's cute when she's angry. Whenever she's upset, Simon has to stifle the urge to laugh.
-She's so special that a man-whore who has been sleeping with any girl who breathes for the last twenty years or so instantly falls so in love with her that he'll never want anyone else ever again.
-She's secretly a virgin (and secretly rich)
-Outrageous and ridiculous misunderstandings abound when a simple conversation would make everything clear
(Okay, at least there isn't a secret baby)
And Simon's big plan to drive Lilly away? To kiss her. Seriously? The plot is convoluted, strange, and hard to make any sense out of. 

I didn't find anything sexy about Simon personally. He is rich and Italian and passionate and (apparently) madly in love with the heroine (for no discernible reason). That's probably plenty of people's fantasy, but I found him foppish and irritating. The laughing at Lilly whenever she was upset and telling her how adorable she is when she's mad was so patronizing it kind of made me hate him. If he had felt real enough to hate, anyway.

It's pretty clear from the start that a cure is likely. I don't think I can call it a "miracle cure," since his prognosis from the start is that he's going to recover. This is more of a nurse-back-to-health fantasy than a dev fantasy. But then, why is he driving away physical therapists and being bitter when he's likely to recover if he just puts in a tiny bit of effort...? I have no idea.

The cover is a weird choice too. Sexy image (would be better with a wheelchair!) but you can't even read the title at all. The lack of contrast is a very unprofessional choice.

Longer review here: