Kimani, $6.50, ISBN 978-0-373-86468-3
Contemporary Romance, 2016
Meet our heroine Dr Felicia Blake. She is – to quote this story – “the third-born of the beautiful, highly accomplished Blake triplets and heir to her family’s billion-dollar international security firm”. And then we meet our hero, Dr Griffin Kaile. To quote the story, he is “a tall, athletically built, outstandingly gifted cardiovascular surgeon and sole heir to his family’s billion-dollar multimedia conglomerates”.
That’s it, folks. By page nine, I have no reason to care whatsoever about these people. What could trouble these people that their money, connections, and godly intellect can’t deal with?
Oh, if you insist. Felicia has always had a crush on Griffin, but thanks to the machination of some woman, she now vows never to ever let her guard down, even if these days, they are both adults and available. She learns shortly after the book begins that the woman, after her divorce and wanting a baby of her own, went ahead and bought herself some sperm from an unscrupulous fertility specialist. And then she had cancer and died, leaving Felicia the baby to raise.
Griffin doesn’t mind raising the baby with Felicia, but because this story needs an excuse to pad the pages to meet the minimal word count, the heroine will act like being with Griffin is a fate worse than death. There will plenty of meandering scenes of people talking about mundane things and the posse of cheerleading zombies uniformly nodding their heads and urging the main characters to have sex ASAP. Seriously, the secondary characters seem to have no lives of their own, no individual thoughts, nothing – just this inexplicably need to constantly remind and urge our main characters that their boinking is inevitable and shouldn’t be put off any longer.
The writing is too much telling, not enough showing, but more significantly, the author injects a ludicrous sense of melodrama that propels the story into self parody territory.
“The same man, the medical school heartthrob with whom Valerie sabotaged any chance that her friend may ever had, was her only option. She couldn’t let her friend have somebody else she couldn’t. Valerie made sure that if she couldn’t have him, her friend wouldn’t have him, either.”
That is spoken by John, Valerie’s lawyer. As cringey as the above is, it is even more ludicrous when you realize that he’s speaking to Felicia, the “friend” he mentions, and that she should already know the story. Is there any reason why he’s acting as if he’s on stage auditioning for a play, one that doesn’t involve drugs?
“You were that friend. And I’m so sorry,” he said, swallowing hard before adding, “Griffin Kale… was the donor.”
Yes, definitely on drugs. And why is he telling this to Felicia, and not the baby daddy? Shouldn’t he have the right to know as well?
Horrible writing aside, there is nothing else in this story worth giving two hoots about. Taking care of a baby? Our heroine has enough money to hire sixteen Filipino maids to take care of that thing, and besides, the baby here is perfect. No colic, no waking up at 4 am wailing for milk, nothing. It is just a prop to show off how much Felicia likes brats. It’s the same with Griffin. He’s loaded. The kid will never want for college money, or bail money as well. He is set for life.
And therefore, the entire story hinges on whether Felicia will find the strength in her open up her heart to Griffin. And given that there are really no issues standing between them, Tempting the Heiress is just a story of two very perfect and loaded people taking forever to come to any sensible resolution about their love story. All their “problems” are trivial, and thus, the story is utterly forgettable. It has no tension, no suspense, no real conflict, nothing, because the author doesn’t want her characters to tainted by any mortal qualities. So why should anyone read this story? Maybe if the person is the author’s friend or family member and wants to show her some support, I guess. I can’t think of any other reason.