Shelton Morrison has a strict and fast rule about not getting involved with his tenants. He doesn't do it. It's bad for business. But, his latest tenant is definitely testing his resolve. She isn't just living in one of his various rental properties, she's living in his upstairs apartment just a stairway away. Savina Savagar is tired of her overbearing, male dominated family. She's moved out and right into the upstairs apartment of her irresistible new landlord. Only, he seems determined to resist her. The more she gets to know him, the more she wants more than the friendship he is offering.
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Shelton has one rule when working with his tenants, never get involved. No matter how pretty they are or how much they bat their eyelids at him, he never gets involved with any of them. Its bad for business. Savina, however tests his resolve. He just can’t get her out of his head and he most certainly not keep away from her. Especially when she is living in the room above him, his rule is not the only problem. Savina has a large family of mainly male relatives, and they are very over bearing, too much at times. The more they resist each other, the more they feel that pull to each other.
This was an interesting listen, it managed to bring me back into the world of audio books when I felt myself suddenly not as interested on my trips to work. The storyline itself would not manage to keep me entertained for the 7 hours of the book, however, the push, pull between the characters, the clear chemistry between the characters and the seriously over bearing brothers, all made this book what it is.
My favourite aspect of romance books are the chemistry between characters. It is the only way that I can actually connect with characters, if I feel they have chemistry with someone else. Books like Pride and Prejudice, Anna and the French Kiss and Fangirl all managed to become some of my favourite books because of the chemistry between the two main characters. Forbidden was a book that managed to build an endearing chemistry between Shelton and Savina and had me looking forward to the inevitable.
I feel that if the characters did not have this chemistry then I would have struggled to listen to the book as the storyline was not able to catch my attention. I struggled at times to understand where the story was going. It seemed to have no push, almost stagnant at times. I thought there would be an interesting turn with the introduction and reappearance of Sergio, but that turned out to be nothing. If there had been slight more substance to the developing of the storyline then this could have definitely be a brilliant book/story.
My favourite aspect of the book was not the chemistry and the push/pull between the characters it was the over-bearing male relatives. Not her father or cousins, but more her brothers. Being brought up around many male relatives, helped me to understand the frustration that Savina had to their butting in and constant being there, but something else that I noted was that Savina wasn’t able to say no. I have never been able to say no to my brothers; I cook for them, usually clean up after them and take them places because, that’s what sisters do. Joseph’s managed to display familial affection expertly, demonstrated sibling rivalry paired alongside how far families will go to protect each other. Even though the family was made up of entirely different siblings, some of which were not even related I greatly enjoyed listening/reading the way they all interacted with each other.
I enjoyed this book at times and others it made me want to scream out in anger but overall I will give it a 3/5 stars.
“I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator
Have you ever read a book with a twist that seems so obvious but only after the fact? All the signs were there from the beginning, if only we knew we needed to interpret them.
Marla Joseph's has created just such a story line. It is all rather sweet and straightforward until, with a sleight of hand the twist occurs and suddenly the plot is more complex than you were led to believe. And yet the clues were there the whole time, in plain sight, if only the reader knew that these seemingly inconsequential details were rather important.
I have listened to the earlier books in the Reluctant Series and was familiar with Shelton already. He is so easy to like with his chivalrous big brother behaviour. Savina is also a very likable character. Their story is so utterly sweet and comfortable, like two pieces of a puzzle that fit perfectly together. Sounds a little dull but it isn't. There is a horde of overprotective interfering men, complex familial ties, hot chemistry, and, of course, the ominous twist. With Marla Josephs falling in love is never enough. The characters in her stories need to work through their issues to reach their HEA.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.