Book Review: HOME by Jezz de Silva

My Quick Book Review of Home by Jezz de Silva

Length: 324 pages (Kindle Edition)
Date of Publication: June 28, 2018
Personal Rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars
Quick Points: Fantastic read, fleshed-out romance tropes, extremely well-developed characters, slow-burn, interracial, May/December, friends to lovers, happily ever after

Inappropriate, Yet Pretty Much Accurate Synopsis: Exotic eye-candy elite solider fulfills his dying BFF’s wish by eventually banging his wife.

(Come on. We all know what “take care of her” means in romance-speak.)

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Home

My Actual, Proper Book Review: 

Home. It’s the place where we always long to be, a private sanctuary where we can truly be ourselves. At its most ideal, home the place where you can be your most vulnerable, yet it’s also the source of your greatest strength and sense of security. Home is the place where your dreams are nourished, and your understanding of true love, protection, and loyalty thrives.

My first impression of the stand-alone novel Home was a positive one. If you’re into slow-burn, friends to lovers, military, interracial, pseudo May/December romance, then you’re bound to be satisfied with what this novel has to offer you. De Silva slaps a perfectly dosed amount of all of the above, with an extra feel good trope or two for good measure. Set in West Australia, the author’s talent of descriptive writing shines through the narrative with visuals that make any reader feel as though she or he is Down Under in the middle of the action like a fly on the wall.

Evelyn (Eve) and Mark Watson have been married for nearly 20 years, and their love is the strongest imaginable. Mark, a Special Forces Staff Sergeant, and his right hand man, Corporal Jamie Turner, are the best of the best in the elite unit. When the two explicitly disobey an order so that they may save numerous innocent lives, tragedy befalls the duo. Before Mark succumbs to his fatal injuries, he makes his young best friend promise to protect Eve, the love of his life.

Jamie, a 28 year old Maori who towers over most people, has the strength of a legendary warrior, the discipline and fine-tuning of the elite soldier that he is, the finesse and charm of any  modern day Casanova, and the heart of a well-loved teddy bear. He makes good on his promise, and is literally welcomed with open arms by both Mark’s grieving widow and his feisty sister, Maggie (who is also Eve’s best friend). Jamie is always respectful, kind, and honest, and he lends his exceptional talents to restore the run-down Watson family home. Eve is a tough, direct, and brave 39 year old trauma nurse who struggles to move forward and stabilize her family’s future. The platonic friendship between the trio is strong and never waivers throughout the story.

As time progresses, the friendship between Jaime and Eve blossoms into romance. From there, the two consummate their transition from friends to lovers. Eventually, the protagonists are able to identify exactly what Home means to them.

Although I’m not a shrinking violet when it comes to profanity, there were times where I felt that its use didn’t necessarily progress the story. Of course, war is hell, and when the effects of it rip into the characters’ lives, I suppose that an F-bomb or ten are justified. Also, my expectations of a May/December romance went far beyond a circa 11-year age difference between Eve and Jaime. To me, that’s more like a May/August thing. No real biggie. (These days, a May/December is more like the current President of France, Emmanuel Macron and his wife, Brigitte Trogneux, who is 24 years his senior.)

When Jamie and Eve do finally make love, the intimate scene is disproportionately short in comparison to the time it takes for them to get to that pivotal moment. More time could have been given to the scene that most readers anticipate throughout the majority of the novel. (In fairness, because the characters hadn’t gotten any in such a long time, this could have been the author’s way of keeping things real. Just sayin’.)
If de Silva had chosen to, the entire sex scene(s) could have been left out of the novel, and it still would have been a perfectly solid read. However, the build up leaves the reader wanting the two characters to achieve fulfillment and unity on all levels, and although this occurs, the physical scenes did feel a bit rushed in comparison to the rest of the beautifully descriptive passages. 

Despite this, the dosage of romance is top-notch throughout the entire novel. If you’re looking for a romantic novel that exposes you to both the raw pain and exhilaration of love, then you’ll not feel cheated in the least.      

All in all, this slow-burn moved at a perfect pace. I found myself taking my time with this story, savoring each passage that continuously built layer after layer of character dimension and depth. De Silva is a storyteller, and he breathed true life into the characters Jaime and Eve. The character development is so incredibly thorough; there were many moments throughout the novel where there were tears in my eyes, simply because I could relate to the characters’ emotional battles in such a meaningful way. Their vulnerability, the rawness of their need to love, be accepted, and be loved, will clutch the heartstrings of any compassionate reader. Home is definitely a worthwhile read. Get a copy, and check out the talented author at jezzdesilva.com. I’ll BOL for more of his works!

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest for more.

How to Sell Your Book

If you’re looking into getting folks to read your book, the best method may be to get them to purchase your book without them even knowing that they’re buying your book.

Wait a minute. Did you just read that last sentence correctly? Sell your book to unsuspecting people? I’m pretty sure you did, but just in case, take a second and look back at that part where I wrote that you could actually get people to buy your book at full price without knowing that they’re buying your book.

Is this some kind of illegal form of deception? Not at all. Actually, it’s a really simple, cool way to sell your book, and a fun marketing campaign that I noticed at the local university bookstore when I went to visit (they have a great Amazon Locker there, lol).

Here’s How to Sell Your Book

Here’s the concept: Adventurous risk-taking readers can go to a special display of various books wrapped in simple brown packing paper. Each book’s cover is hidden, as well as the blurb. Instead, you see a handwritten indication of the genre, a few themes, and the price.

That’s it.

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Atina Atwood

Customers buy the book, and then I guess they record the unveiling online somewhere, because that’s a thing. And there you go! Now you have another way to sell your book. Will this method make you tons of money? Maybe not. But it could be yet another method to add to your ever growing arsenal of self-promotional marketing tools.

What do you think of this idea? Would you use it? Tell me what you think in the comments!

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for more.

Happy First Day of Summer!

Seriously, how could I have missed this?! Here’s to my second favorite season of the year – SUMMER! Spring will always be my favorite, but summer is a close second… even in San Diego.

People keep asking me what my plans are, and I’m thrilled to the moon to say that I have none. This will be the first summer in nearly a decade where I can actually say this!!

So, hello good times, hello hot romantic reads and writes, hello fun, hello summer! 

What things do you love to do during the summer?

Happy First Day of Summer
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©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. Follow me on Twitter!

What is this wonderment called Poldark, and why am I just now getting into it???

Aidan Turner.

Image result for poldarkImage: Source

When I finally started to watch Poldark (about 15 hours ago), I knew that it had been around for a little while. Let’s face it, they’re getting ready to debut Season 4 and I’ve just wrapped up Episode 4 of the 1st season. However, I had no blooming clue that the Poldark saga has been around since 1945!!!

Let that sink in a moment. Poldark has been captivating audiences around the world since 1945. I’ll throw another fun zinger in – this saga is comprised of 12 novels, written by Winston Graham over the span of many decades from 1945 to 2002.

Amazing.

It’s my understanding that each season of the revived Poldark (there was also a previous BBC airing of the saga in the 1970’s) covers two novels. Hopefully, that means that the life of this version of the show will last for at least a total of 6 seasons. In any case, if you’re like me, it seems as though any Summer Reading dilemma that you may have is over.

This is the kind of stuff that makes me love the art of writing. With the perfect dose of divine inspiration, one can create fantastic works that span over generations, but at the same time, never age.

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Image: Source

Be honest, how may of you were huge fans of Poldark before BBC plucked this man from the heavens and placed him in this BBC revival? I remember him from the very “interesting” supernatural drama Being Human, and I was happy to see him in a role that truly suits him. He obviously has a Ph.D. in Brooding, and every episode of Poldark makes sure that he utilizes it in nearly every scene. He even looks pissed when he’s asking for the time. Fortunately for him (and all of us viewers), he pretty much looks good no matter what. (Sorry – is it wrong of me to objectify him? If so, then please scroll past these final images.)

Image: Source

©Atina Atwood 2016-2018

 

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Whatever Happened to that Free Ebook I promised?

My sister sweetly reminded me the other day that in a previous post a few months back, I promised to write a free ebook before this year ended. Well, thank you for the reminder, and I’m happy to say that I wrapped it up last month in November! I’m pretty pleased with it, and I’m hopeful that you will be, too.

So, that’s the good news. The not so fantastic for the short-term follower is that I am definitely postponing the release of this ebook because, well, it actually inspired me to expand on my series beyond the original novels. That means that each book continues to be a stand-alone, but you can also now expect a shorter story involving the original characters to have another dance in the limelight.

Meanwhile, look for the continuation of a story I started in a previous blog post, Skies of Gray (it was originally “Shades of Gray”, but I’m modifying it to avoid confusion). The next installment can be found on my blog next month in January.

As this year closes, I wish all of you a safe, uneventful ending to this year, and a Happy New Year 2018 filled with happiness, laughter, love, and if you’re open to it, romance. 💜