Monday, October 19, 2015

ARC REVIEW: True Deceptions by Veronica Forand

Title: True Deceptions
Author: Veronica Forand
Publisher: Entangled Suspense
Published: October 19th 2015
Format: eARC | Pages: 271
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense
Source: Publisher
★★★ (3/5) Stars

Veronica Forand | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Temptation. Seduction. Murder. It's all part of the game...

After his partner was murdered, Simon Dunn was done with MI6. But the cold, violent world of British intelligence never lets anyone go free. Now Simon has been blackmailed into a new job...with a beautiful new partner who's going to get them both killed.

Robotics expert Cassie Watson is a newbie field agent with as much sophistication as...well, a pacifist, vegan computer nerd. Now she's abruptly thrust into the cutthroat world of espionage with a partner who is as cold as he is brutally-and brutishly-handsome.

But when their mission is betrayed from the inside, Cassie will be forced to place her life in the hands of the one man who's anything but trustworthy...

I received a copy of this book, from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review. In no way did this sway either my review or my rating.

My review for True Deceptions may end up being a bit confusing, or at the very least contradictory, because that's how my feelings are for this book. Very contradictory. On the one hand I was sucked deeply into the story and couldn't wait to see what would happen next. Hence not feeling like I could go below three stars for my rating. On the other...well, it was very easy to put down or get distracted with other things or have my mind wander. You see what I'm saying? I liked it, but I wasn't over the moon in love with it.

The whole suspenseful aspect and the mystery of what was going on within the story was very solid. I highly enjoyed that part of the story. Especially when you have something extremely dark and sort of "holy crap what am I reading?!" happen within the first few pages. I loved that start and the shock it gave me.

Where things got iffy for me was within both of the characters and the romance. The romance itself felt like it was happening at warp speed and was difficult to believe at times. I feel like they never really talked to each other about themselves, the things they did know about each other for the most part came from them doing some digging and internet stalking of each other. There weren't many conversations besides "you work for me you will do as I tell you and stay out of my way" types of conversations. And all the "sexual tension" I just was not feeling, like I didn't get it, couldn't understand how they would end up in bed together. How all of a sudden they each meant so much to the other one. It was just kind of silly to me. Yep, basically insta-love. So that was a strike against it.

Cassie's character was extremely hard to like, most especially in the first half of the book. She has zero backbone and gives new meaning to the word passive. When Simon starts insisting that Cassie do something that goes against the lifestyle choices she's made for herself the fight she puts up against him is basically nonexistent. It's like "no" "yes I insist" "fine". I mean this wasn't like some tiny little thing it was a huge deal and she just caved to avoid confrontation. I have zero respect for people like that. It wasn't until a majorly traumatic event happens somewhere around the middle that I actually start to like her a bit but even then her change is just so drastic that it doesn't feel real you know? Like she went too far in the other direction for as meek as she started out.

And Simon really wasn't that great either. I feel like controlling would be an understatement in describing his personality. If I go into very much detail or facts to back up my assessment it'd be too spoilery. He's got a few moments where he seems descent and sweet and thoughtful but he always seems to find a way to ruin it by being a complete jackass. I truly didn't understand how someone with a personality like Cassie's could have taken an interest in him at all.

Just so I'm not completely dumping on the book and to show that I did get into it quite a bit, one thing Veronica Forand did a really good job of doing was making you second guess your first impressions of the characters she's created. You get this gut instinct about someone and then their actions are constantly making you waver back and forth with are they good are are they bad? I actually liked that. Nobody was ever really quite what they seemed.

Overall I'm very in the middle on my feelings with this book. It was engaging and pulled me in and at times even had me on the edge of my seat. I feel like the romance really got in the way when it comes to True Deceptions though. It was one of the few times where I could have done without a romantic entanglement and I live for that stuff. And there were moments of pure frustration and aggravation. But regardless of how I felt about the romance and all that I did enjoy the rest and felt it made it worth the read.

Thanks to Entangled Publishing for the opportunity to read and review this book!!

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