Saturday, October 4, 2014

Book Review - Stepbrother Dearest by Penelope Ward

Stepbrother Dearest
by Penelope Ward
Published 2014
232 Pages

Greta is excited to meet her new stepbrother, Elec. She and her mother had been on their own until her mother married Randy, and now Randy's teenage son will be coming to live with them for the school year. As she eagerly awaits his arrival, and ponders what it will be like to have a stepbrother, nothing could have prepared her for Elec. 

Instead of sisterly feelings, she is overwhelmed by his physical charms. All tattoos, muscles, and inky black hair, Elec means trouble for Greta, not only because of the unexpected attraction she feels toward him, but because of the cutting comments he directs at her from day one. She is determined to understand the reasons as to why he is so guarded and unreachable. Then, one night she hears Randy verbally assaulting Elec. Sure, Elec had been out late drinking. But Randy's behavior is extreme, and she comes to Elec's defense. Not understanding the full scope, Greta begins to realize there is more to Elec's troubled and complex family history than meets the eye.

Just as things seem to be improving between them, Greta hears giggling behind the door, and knows Elec has brought another girl home. Her feelings continue to confuse her, in much the same way that Elec's behavior toward her is giving her whiplash. He's hot and cold, on and off, and now he is leaving... abruptly, and for reasons she could never have expected. But in their parting, there is a closeness that is equally surprising, and a reveal that is shocking. The intimacy they share will be unmatched, and will prove to hold significance that will span the miles and the years between them, until they meet again.

What a fanta
stic story, full of twists and turns! If you've read the author's other books, you know she is a master at setting the stage for unexpected and unorthodox pairings. Stepbrother Dearest holds many surprises for the reader, and goes far beyond the original premise, to tell a tale of love, longing, and desire that doesn't fit neatly into any one category. 

The only issue I had was in part two. A lot of the dialogue from Elec's point of view was repetitive, right down to the text messages they shared. I did enjoy the reveals, which were important to the plot. But the repetitive sections could have been left out altogether, without any negative impact on the story.

Overall, another win for the author, who has once again surprised me with an unconventional romance that kept me glued to the pages, and eager to see what was going to happen next!

Available on Amazon

Reviewed by Stephanie


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