Saturday, July 21, 2012
Review: Bared to You by Sylvia Day
When Eva Tramell leaves her traumatic past behind her to take a normal job at an ad agency, the last thing she expects is to fall head over heels for Gideon Cross, one of the richest men in the world—and for him to fall for her as well. Their physical connection is instant and intense, but it is what they learn about each other as, slowly, they reveal their pasts and their flaws that draws them together into an unbreakable bond, no matter how difficult things get.
Ah, an actually worthy erotica title to recommend! While it is not perfect, BARED TO YOU blows Fifty Shades of Grey completely out of the water with its put-together writing and incredible protagonist.
Seriously, I’m not exaggerating when I say that Eva Tramell is incredible. Why was the passive, plain, “who, me?” female protagonist ever in vogue? I say that Eva’s independent, forward, and don’t-cross-this-line-with-me personality should be the model for future romantic protagonists! The thing that drove me craziest in FSoG was how Ana let Christian walk all over her: “Oh, you’re a man, you’re rich, you’re handsome, you’re experienced…you obviously know me better than I know myself. Hehe!” Gag. No, Eva knows what she wants. She’s not afraid to voice her desires, and she’ll put her foot down if Gideon does or says anything that gets her riled up. That she does all of this while being a survivor of childhood trauma makes her even more impressive and sympathetic. And she gets jealous and insecure, like everyone else. Wow! Eva should be every man’s—and even every woman’s—dream. She sure has become mine.
On the other hand, rather disturbingly, Gideon Cross is kind of less appealing than Christian Gray. Christian at least is a man, albeit one with a mysterious and troubled past. Gideon, on the other hand, is like a man-child with too much money and time on his hand. “Ooh, pretty shiny woman, me want, me want more than anything in my life, gimme!” Sexy—uh, yeah, no. I appreciated that Eva was the stronger person in their relationship, instead of letting the troubled Gideon walk all over her (a la Ana Steele). Gideon grew on me by the end—his utter determination to get help for himself in order to make Eva happy and keep her safe definitely threw points in his favor—and besides, without his oftentimes outrageous behavior, there wouldn’t be a story, would there?
The beginning—up to Eva and Gideon getting together—felt a little forced in terms of the writing, but the sexytimes are hot hot hot, and Sylvia Day has created major and minor characters that you’ll find yourself getting attached to before you even realize it. You should read this if you like erotica but felt FSoG was lacking in good writing technique and a compelling character relationship. Because BARED TO YOU delivers on exactly those fronts.