My rating: 1 of 5 stars
DNF at 35%
Whomever wrote the blurb for this book should be given a talking to. Not once in that entire blurb does it mention romance, love interest, growing attraction, or any of the key words I would expect given the clear and obvious intent of The Vine Witch to be a romance novel. It's okay for it to be a romance novel, but tell me that up-front so that I'm not disappointed.
Luanne G. Smith does a few other disservices to her novel in the first 35% that I read.
Here are a few points that really bothered me:
- Smith assumed that five pages of our lead gal being a frog/toad is enough for us to hate whomever cursed her. We never find out what she might have done wrong or how it came about (up to the 35% point) so I guess we are just supposed to 'trust' that our gal was wrong.
- Similar to the above issue, we are presented with a 'bad guy' that is a classic successful business man whom wants to take over everything. Seriously put a guy in a black hat and suit, any bad guy from Dallas or other soap operas and you've got this guy. But again we don't really know what he's done. We know there are some charms that have been put in place; but no one actually establishes they are his or that he is aware of them. Being a shrewd business man doesn't necessarily make you evil. And yet the fierceness with which are lead gal wants his death is somehow supposed to mean something to me...?
- Who buys a property with a locked door and doesn't insist on seeing inside? I mean come on...
- If you want to combine the idea of the science that goes into wine making (which is fairly complex) and magic, I'm okay with it. But I need a way to connect the two. It can't be that science is all out and magic is all in, or the other way around. Find a way to make them harmonious.
- And finally, if you are going to be a romance novel then you need to set the precedent of why our gal or guy might be intrigued or interested in the other. With the exception of proximity and no other characters around of the right age I couldn't figure out what would attract our two characters to one another.
Overall, I'd pass on this one unless you care a lot about wine, silly romances, or revenge magic. Don't let the pretty cover fool you.
Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.
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