Man, I was so this lady last week. Put a Kindle in place of the laptop and you have me, not finishing two friggin' books!
I like shifters. I like menage stories. Hell, I like m/m stories. Yet both of these shifter stories by well known authors annoyed the piss out of me. (And no, I'm so not talking about Shelly Laurenston's new Bear Meets Girl, which I read through the way dark hours when I should have been sleeping. Damn that woman for writing such killer good books! And damn her again for having such long lag times between releases!)
Ahem. Anyway, my peeve with the other books I read. How to begin? First, I'd love to mention them but don't want to offend the authors. Nor do I want to post negative reviews of books others apparently love. Both of these books have been bestsellers. But honestly, I couldn't make it through either one.
Let's take the menage. Three shifters, two men, one woman. I don't think there's any m/m play in the book, but I couldn't read far enough into it even for the sex. Man. I don't think I've read such an immature heroine in a good long while. She literally beats on her lovers-to-be. Physical fighting to hide emotion? Very fourth grade. And the giggles and dialogue just weren't what I'd expected from this author I've heard so much about. It killed me because I wanted so badly to like the book. But even the heroes came across as weak. They both want her. Why? Nature, I guess. They will fight to have her. They must fight to have her. Then between one blink and a heartbeat, decide to share her. What the hell? Like a side of beef. Meh.
And then the other shifter book. The author has a huge following. I've read another of her stories and really liked it. Read a follow-on I didn't much care for. But this one had a great cover, seemed intriguing, and well, fell flat. Again, more unrealistic dialogue. One hero doesn't much care how the other hero (yes, a m/m romance) makes fun of him, time and time again. Just lust, all over the place, while the sexy but mean hero constantly feels lust and love (???) for the other, but I have no idea why. They never connect. Lots of spooning and talk about sex, but no sex, and then bam, mean guy just loves other guy he's spent the better part of the portions I read annoyed by him. And all the giggling. Really? Do grown men giggle? Do they say "golly" and "eep" and "wowzers"? ARGH. I wanted to pull my hair out.
I just can't get these books out of my head. I was angry after reading--trying to read--these. I wanted badly to like them. They looked terrific. They got great reviews. Yet I couldn't finish either one. Maybe I need some time to wait and go back later and try again. It hurts to spend money for a book and not like it, especially when you want badly to add another author to your auto-buy list.
And there it is! Suddenly I'm that reader who jeers. Granted, I didn't write a nasty or mean-spirited review here. But I get why some reviewers are mean. No, I don't think it's right, but I understand it. As an author, I appreciate the time and effort those other authors put into writing their books. Obviously other readers liked them, because they appear to be selling quite well. But I felt almost betrayed that my expectations weren't met. So how did I get over that?
Time and other books.
It was difficult, because I was REALLY jonesing for new romances to read, and I thought to give these somewhat new-to-me authors a try, but when they didn't work, I went back to some tried and true stuff. Some older shifter romances by authors I like. Another read-through of one of my newer works, which isn't due to be released until later this year. A glance at a JAK and a Christine Feehan. Those made me smile and put a better taste in my mouth, while also reminding me how much writing is subjective.
I honestly couldn't tell you why other readers liked the stories I couldn't finish. But then, I can't tell you why some folks don't like my work either, when if you ask me, they're the best things since sliced bread. :) Who the hell knows? But at least I persevered, and I am back in my happy place reading great books again.