Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Passion; Lisa Valdez

As far as I can tell Passion is Ms. Valdez’ only romance, the sequel titled Patience is “coming soon” but Passion was published in July 2005. I can’t find information about the second title (as of the date I posted this review). Perplexingly, she lists an ISBN & an excerpt (for Patience) but Berkley’s parent, Penguin Group, has no information available on their site. It’s too bad because I like this book and might buy more if it does indeed get published.

I think I’d probably put Ms. Valdez in the same category as Robin Schone, erotic historical romance. My initial reaction to Passion was “they didn’t have sex like that back then!” After I got over myself though, I remembered that most people think their generation invented sex from the ground up. Much like my twelve year old son is totally grossed out by Cialis commercials. Old people simply don’t have sex, except to conceive children and then only in the missionary position, once per child, etc. etc. I laughed at myself. I mean I had to.

The plot that enfolds all of this hot sex? A young widow meets a man at the Crystal Palace in London and they become um..friends with benefits. I found the scenario wherein they become lovers farfetched, but I just went with it. They continue this relationship until complications involving blackmail, betrothal and the fact that the protagonists discover they’re caught within a ‘six degrees of separation’ situation. Unfortunately the author takes a well known Romanceland shortcut whereby the hero’s magical, prodigious love making skills and penis size impregnates the previously infertile heroine. It is certainly implied that because the hero can make her orgasm she became pregnant.

Ms. Valdez did an exemplary job sucking me in to her story. It wasn’t until afterwards that the problems started bubbling up. One, as mentioned above, the situation in which they initially have sex was farfetched for me. Two, the hero insists on “battering the door to her womb” (p.116) which considering his “ten and a half inches of hard flesh” (p. 112) sounds incredibly painful even taking into consideration Ms. Valdez’ use of the Aphrodite and Haephestus metaphor. Three, there’s the sudden resolution of Passion’s infertility via orgasms.

The list sounds bad, I know, but none of these things bothered me until after I read the book. Ms. Valdez wrote a fascinating, titillating story that sucked me in from the beginning. She got me to initially overlook a whole bunch of plot and story problems un favor of discovering what happens to Passion and Mark. I can’t wait for Patience’s story.

Image found on Fantastic Fiction

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