St Martin’s Griffin, $15.99, ISBN 978-1-250-10930-9
Contemporary Erotica, 2016
I probably shouldn’t say this, but I’m sure the author is a big girl who can kiss her thick stacks of dollar bills to ease the pain. Anyway, I saw One with You in the bookstores a few months ago, but because I know from experience that her books inevitably end up going on sale at great discount, I decided to wait. Interestingly, this book was released in April, and already by now, it is on sale at 50% at my neighborhood bookstore. It is not a promotional sale, so I guess the bookstore just wants to clear its stock? Whatever the reason, that’s unusually fast, isn’t it?
Anyway. this one finally concludes the Crossfire series, which you may recall was publicized to be a trilogy until the author revealed that she would be expanding the series to five books. The timing of the announcement – it came out shortly after the author allegedly renegotiated with her publisher – surely was only coincidental; she said she had experienced an epiphany and realized that the story here could not be contained within three measly books, so who are we to disagree. That was quite a big backlash against the announcement, though, and the fact that the subsequent books dragged on like a terminally ill family member that just won’t die only add to the suffering of a vocal number of the author’s readers.
I am not a PR person, but I wonder whether the author could have retained her considerable amount of early goodwill if she had, say, concluded the series as a trilogy and then announced instead that she would be writing another spin-off series, in which Faux Anastasia and Faux Christian would still play a big role, but there would also be spotlights shone on the exes and hangers-on of these two twits as well. Perhaps then there would be more serenity and less fracturing among the author’s fan club?
Then again, I don’t think her sales suffer that much, so she’s still rolling in dollar bills all the way to the bank at the end of the day.
What, this book? Oh yes, I’m supposed to be reviewing One with You, but I have to confess, I don’t know of anything I can say that would be interesting here. This is a “wrap up the dangling bits” story, although be rest assured, nothing is wrapping Gideon’s dangling salami here from constantly coming in contact with Eva’s tuna for the perfect sandwich. Even then, not everything is really wrapped up – Tatiana, if you care to remember, may be pregnant with that imbecile Cary’s spawn, or maybe not. You won’t find out here, because she’s only mentioned briefly in a “Oh, she exists… still” way. And there are a few other players whom I can’t be arsed to remember, because they just show up in the filler books, wave their ho bag presence around, and then vamoose now that they have done their duty and the author has no use for them anymore. And also, it’s been a while since I read the previous books, so I can’t specifically remember whom these one-dimensional soap opera rejects are. Or even care to, come to think of it.
Gideon and Eva have plenty of sex here, though, as heaven knows, something has to happen to fill up the pages here. Can you believe that only three months have passed between book one and this one? I tried rereading the books to refresh my memory prior to reading this one, but I felt like I aged a hundred years by the time I am halfway through the first book again. By the time this book rolls in, the sex isn’t even that fun to read anymore, because Eva and Gideon sexing it up by this point is like having to listen to the noisy neighbors squealing and boinking yet again. Instead of feeling titillated, one would feel more tempted to start smashing a chair against the wall while screaming at those to shut up and die. The magic is gone, all that is left is just that feeling of just wanting it all to be over with quick.
So there you have it. One with You isn’t the most exciting read, because it reads like a mechanical effort just to close the story. Why do I feel like the author is just as relieved to see this series end? At any rate, I’m tossing this one a generous extra oogie because, instead of feeling like I wasted my money, I am instead relieved that the terminally ill family member finally expires and we all can move on with our lives now. There is no grief, because all signs show that this series has been on life support since the third book onwards. If we take away all the filler sex and scenes involving secondary characters that have even less charisma than a tree stump. what is left is something like those free “epilogue short story” stuff usually given away by authors on their website or as newsletter sign-up freebies.
But this series is one with God now, so to speak – unless, god forbid, the author resurrects the series for another 55 more books – so let’s just put the past behind us, forgive all the sins wrought upon us by authors with misguided intentions, and have a group hug. Can I get an amen?