Sabine (and the Beast #1) by Moira Rogers
Samhain Publishing (May 2011) | Ebook, 68 Pages
First off, I’m the type of reader who will try any genre or sub-genre at least once and though I’m not easily shocked by crude language if it’s in the tone or context of the book. This short ebook didn’t hit the mark in many ways. This is a shame because there is the bones to a pretty good plot underneath it all.
So the good points of the book?
Well, I thought that the actual plot was pretty interesting, if underdeveloped. I wanted to know more about what drove the hero’s mother to get the witch to put the curse on Sabine. This drove me to read and finish the book, if only to see this plotline completed. Unfortunately, it was only ever explained by Ciar’s mother wanting him to marry a noblewoman.
This wasn’t enough for me to enjoy the book or give it a higher rating. The main characters are pretty undeveloped. At no time did I find myself rooting for either the hero or heroine to get the HEA that this genre is known for. Sabine has no spark and is pretty one dimensional. I found that she had nothing that made me connect with her or root for her to get her happy ever after.
The author only touches very briefly on the trials that Sabine faced. From being turned away from the court, to a brief description on how it broke Sabines heart that her mother didn’t recognise her. This second trial held the most potential, but even the reconciliation between mother and daughter is given the briefest of scenes near the end. Now this could be due to the length of the book, and at only just under 70 pages, not everything could be explained in depth. It’s the very length of the book that is at fault.
Ciar fares no better, with the author attempting to make him the alpha male, returning from war. But this loses impact as we aren’t given motivation for this action. A small introduction to the world is given, but it doesn’t give any detail on why Ciar is away from his land.
The only saving grace for Ciar is his stern belief that they can overcome the curse. Even when it’s taking its hold on him, you can feel his determination. Yet, this is not enough to save him from coming across as very one dimensional.
For the actual plot, there are two main turning points. For this curse to take effect, it has to involve contact with Sabine, with physical contact quickening the effects. The author manages to build the sexual frustration between the two characters, but with huge time jumps, the dramatic effect of them accidentally touching when reaching for a jug is lost. The scene before it has no build up. It just happens. There are no near misses to build the suspense.
The second turning point, is after the two characters mate. In a common theme for this genre, when the two mate, it should hold a strong bond over Ciar, even when he forgets her. This scene was the strangest for me. At the beginning of the book, the author attempts to slide into erotic paranormal romance by using the slang term for the female sexual organ that begins with a ‘c’. The strange thing is that she seems to be writing in one style for most of that scene, before suddenly throwing in this word twice in, what I thought, was an attempt to make it edgy. It fails as its disrupts the flow of the whole scene, taking you out of it. By changing this word, it would have made all the difference.
Skipping to the actual mating, there is very little bedroom action. The lust that was attempted in the first sex scene is gone and it was strange to read.
For me the main thing that made this book such a disappointment to read, was the fact that I cared so little for their plight. I like to root for either the hero, heroine or both to get their happy ever after. I want to feel their emotions as I read their story. This lacked that little spark.
The ending of the book concluded with a fizzle, with very few loose ends tied up. What surprised me the most was having no reaction to this. I didn’t feel frustrated or angry at not know what happened to the various characters, though I was mildly interested to find out what happened to the witch and Ciars mother.
It seems to be a book with lots of potential that was never fully realised. If the book had been longer and the characters better developed I may have enjoyed it more. This book has not made me eager to read more by this author, nor read the next in the series, which is a shame as the blurb promised much.
BUY YOUR COPY