Sunday, March 29, 2015

Alphabet Soup Challenge: Sylvain Reynard - Gabriel's Rapture

Professor Gabriel Emerson has embarked on a passionate, yet clandestine affair with his former student, Julia Mitchell.
Sequestered on a romantic holiday in Italy, he tutors her in the sensual delights of the body and the rapture of sex. But when they return, their happiness is threatened by conspiring students, academic politics, and a jealous ex-lover.
When Gabriel is confronted by the university administration, will he be forced to share Dante’s fate? Or will he fight to keep Julia, his Beatrice, forever?

Comment: This is the second story in the Gabriel's Inferno trilogy by Sylvain Reynard. I've read the first story back in 2013 and in the previous year I've purchased the remaining two books so I could read them closer to each other, considering I enjoyed the first story enough to keep reading.

This is the continuation of the story of professor Gabriel and his former student Julia. Now that the semester is over and Julia has a different teacher, she and Gabriel aren't hiding anymore and despite being reserved, they appear together in Italy when Gabriel is there to participate in a conference or something. While finding out the beauty of true love they still have their everyday lives to go through and deal with jealousy and problems others put in front of them. The real challenge is to be true to themselves while many others don't see what they have.

I liked the previous installment enough to keep reading, like I said. I think the biggest issue I had with that first book keeps up to this one and most likely will still be present in the last one. I think the author takes too long and is too wordy about certain pointless details such as the clothes they wear, the brands and how they get ready for everything. I think descriptions are always useful and offer a lot more than just adjectives, but balance is everything.

This book has less pages than the first but I got the same feeling too much space was being occupied with things that didn't really matter to the plot. Some ideas are slightly inferred which is great for us to use our brain but instead of so much detail, maybe space would have been better used for more interesting information. I feel too much attention was given to things that didn't have any relevance to the plot while other things happened in a way I feel wasn't done as well as it should.

Julia and Gabriel have had a relationship hard to accept by some people, especially when those people don't know everything about them or the connection between their families. This happened on purpose, of course, to better show the distance in status between them. But I think that the risk was too high to ignore, although they do that anyway.
This happened because they claim to love each other, and so on, but their relationship doesn't seem as well balanced as I thought after the first book, mainly because of the focus given to each of their personalities. I don't mean to say they should change themselves completely, but a better proof of their evolution and growth would have better, in my opinion.
I just think sometimes things happened because of stupid moves and avoidable steps and I wonder how clever people would do it, but there seemed to exist a certain rick factor that made their love and relationship something others wouldn't want to see but of course people can't help but look and know.

This being said, the main subject of the plot is of course their relationship and the fact there's a hierarchy and rules they should have followed on the college's sphere and didn't. I assume they took the risk for selfish purposes, not exactly because of blind love guiding them. Like I said, they are clever people, with pasts, with animosity in the beginning of their relationship. They should know to be careful, to do things right from the moment things changed between them. 
But they took a chance because they probably thought it wouldn't matter, because it wasn't any body's business, because who would care, because of their love bubble...I don't know, but the key conflict of this second book was how others found out about their relationship in a place where it shouldn't exist.
The following scenes and decisions are a huge part of the angsty development and subsequent making up, and apart from the sugary levels in there, most things happened in a way very close to a possible reality. Still, I think sometimes we might make decisions not always well thought so I can understand the conflict but again, it kind of needed a bit more polishing.

All in all, the slow pace, the exaggerated and endless details everywhere plus the many descriptions of every said detail cost much of my attention for this book. I still have high hopes for the next one and I hope that it offers less descriptions of what they wear and go to because that isn't as interesting as the author tries to make it so.
Grade: 6/10

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