by Eboni Snoe, contemporary (2000)
Avon, $5.99, ISBN 0-380-81395-5
Need more salt and pepper.
That's my diagnosis on what's lacking in Wishin' On A Star, Eboni Snoe's latest contemporary with a touch of magic. This time, we sail off to exotic, lovely Grenada for some R&R with our heroine Shelby Russau and hero Raphael Blaize (where do all these macho names come from?).
Shelby is approached by Raphael - let's just call him Rafe - one day while she is busy living the life of a modern romance novel careerwoman (read: frustrated and dateless). Turns out that her dead bro, while on some soldier duty in Grenada, has had a son with Rafe's sister. The poor boy needs a blood transfusion ASAP (AB type) or he'll be shaking hands with papa in heaven. Shel naturally rushes over with Rafe over Grenada.
In lovely Grenada, they two start thinking of making babies together. But you know Shel - busy, no time, career, all men are useless cheaters, etc. And Rafe, while coming close to sainthood at times, is a traditionalist who advocates culture and tradition. It's City Girl and Country (Rich) Bloke all over again.
Unlike some really effective cross-cultural romance thingies like - say, the movies The Wedding Banquet by Ang Lee or Double Happiness (Chinese/White romance) - Wishin' On A Star is flat. Reason? Every internal conflict feels forced. It's as if the author is too fond of her characters to actually imbue in them any flaws. He's perfect, she's perfect, but they're both indulging in minor understandings all the time to keep the story moving. All flaws are superficial, hence, the whole story ends up feeling superficial.
It will be nice if there is some actual elements that could add some impact to the drama. How about some elements of racism and prejudice that wouldn't be brushed off easily because he/she is so hot?
Instead of a romance with deep substance, WOAS is instead more of a group tour of Grenada. It looks nice, but I leave with nothing more than some vague impressions, such as, "It is fun... isn't it?"
This book at Amazon.com
This book at Amazon UK
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