Indulging in Irelyn by D.L. Raver
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Oh, this book has me so torn. I ended up liking it, and it ended on a hell of a cliffhanger, so of course I am dying to read the next book! But I had a big problem with the female MC, Irelyn.
First of all, I have to say that while I do appreciate originality when it comes to MC names in books, I think that D.L. Raver might have went a bit too far. Zolten and Irelyn are pretty cool names, but when you have to read them repeatedly during a story, you kind of start to trip up on them, and it eventually ended up distracting me. But, that in no way is effecting my review - just a side note.
Okay, Irelyn could have been a really great female lead. But there were certain things she said and did that just turned me off - like, for good. First of all was the fact that she ever allowed herself to get roped into a relationship with someone like Marcus in the first place. I guess to a certain extent that can be blamed on how young she is and her immaturity, but there is no way in hell that she should have put up with him for 9 months. I mean, he basically treated her like a dog. And then when Zolt came in to the picture, she should have had no problem dropping Marcus immediately. This crap with her having to wait and being scared of him, and then making Zolt have sex with her first so that she could be "sure" that she was doing the right thing was crazy! Is she the type of girl that has to already have somebody else in line before she leaves the guy she's with? I don't know, but it was a flimsy excuse at best. Marcus was revolting, and Irelyn lost all of my respect when she dilly dallied about dumping him.
I also kind of had a problem with this crazy "connection" that Zolt and Irelyn supposedly have. They caught a glimpse of each other during the NFL football game when Zolt was injured and it has stayed with both of them for 6 years - growing into an almost obsession on both of their parts. But Zolt was so out of it when he saw her that he thought she was a hallucination, and on top of that, she was only 15 or 16 at the time, so he's been having fantasies about a teenager for 6 years, and he's 28. Kind of creepy. All of that aside, I don't think it's believable that they would have nurtured these feelings for each other for 6 years with no other kind of contact. I think it was just a convenient occurrence that was supposed to try and help explain their instant attraction and insta-love. But, I would have been more accepting of the typical insta-lust, insta-love scenario than this cockamamie back story.
Another thing that bothered me was Zolt's weird tendency to refer to his sixth sense and his "shadow-self." It didn't really jive with the story, or with who I thought Zolt was as a character. He was a successful NFL quarterback until he was injured, and then he became a highly successful lawyer. He just doesn't strike me as the type of Alpha male that believes in sixth senses or shadow-selfs. Maybe that was the way he tried to dodge responsibility when he acted like a jerk, by blaming it on his shadow self, but it just seemed kind of silly.
Overall, it took me until nearly halfway into the book to really get hooked, but once Irelyn left Marcus and then all of his secrets started coming out, I was into it. The story took on a scary sort of suspenseful/mystery vibe, and when added to the erotic love story it really worked. My recommendation is to give this one a chance, because even though it has some flaws there is a really good story in there too.
**Free copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**
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