The Look of Love - Bella Andre

I'm participating in the Novel Publicity Tour for The Sullivans series!

My very first blog tour I'm in. =) So excited!

I received a free copy of this book to review as a part of the blog tour in order to give my honest opinion, so here it is.

I'm really excited to be apart of this blog tour and read these books because it's been awhile long since I've sunk my teeth into a straight-up romance. I tend to cycle through every genre so I don’t become bored and I’m in the mood for a graphic romantic read. Graphic, as opposed to non-graphic aka “clean” (I loathe that term) reads. 


Trigger Warning: There's some discussion of Chloe's abusive past while she's recovering and learning to trust her new man.




There was some actions by Chase in the beginning that cross the line and his justifications are stupid (couldn’t he put her in a motel and give her a couple thousand dollars to get out of there?), but he really stepped back a lot. Those first moments have to be forgiven for the story to unfurl. Can I let it go completely though? Nope. I LOVE how he stopped because she was drunk though. That is what's supposed to happen.


I liked all the characters well enough, especially Chloe. I liked watching Chloe blossom, even though I had my issues with completely buying into insta-bloom. I knew that going in that this was going to be a quick turnaround for Chloe but even primed, it was hard believing it totally. Occasionally, that voice in the back of my head just had to pipe up with “Really?”


I found myself intrigued by Marcus and wanting to read his story, which is the next book in the series. His story has the instant love but without the baggage of a previously abusive and controlling relationship so I might be into that story more.


Of course, it's cheesy, corny and ridiculously sweet, like dessert nachos. (Mmmmm.*drool*) There's references to this indulgence throughout the novel as Chloe tries to deal with living a fairy tale. For me, it strode the line at times but didn't become a problem. For the average romance reader, I don’t think it will be a issue. 


The only other thing about the writing is that there is lots of repeating words. Besides the nicknames, the codewords, which all have reasons for being repeated. The word choice outside of those incidents is rather stagnant. (Of course, I do tons of repeating myself in writing but I’m not a bestselling author. ;) )


There's a LOT of it - romanticized perfect sex of course. Yes, it's a romance book after all. I'm more happy with the how it talks about the man submitting, which is usually so taboo. Then there's masturbation by women which is also in the same boat.


However, this idea that if you're abused in a relationship, the reason why you can't be tied up is due to you not fully trusting your partner is not always right. The assumption that enough time, trust and love magically removes such issues is pervasive. Often the triggering of horrific memories is so strong it is physically impossible to partake in such activities - even if that's what turn them on before. Even after years and years. (Triggers can also be “awesomely” random and selective.)


Good 3 stars

If you can suspend disbelief enough to accept never-ending love in 4 days (that actually occurs at first sight natch), that someone can overcome trust and abuse issues so quickly then yeah, it's perfect.

In end, I found The Look of Love to be an enjoyable, easily readable titillating romp. However, the writing and my inability to suspend disbelief completely kept this book back for me, earning three stars.


Recommended for:

Romance lovers, especially if you want a sweet, steamy, quick and easy read. There is talk of Chloe's abusive past and overcoming it, so trigger warning.

Update: It's been awhile and I still haven't gotten to the other Sullivan books. I don't think I will. I haven't been in the mood for a plain romance novel again yet and I am so behind on my reading list that a trim is in order.