Thursday, June 30, 2016

Ruth Ann Nordin - Suddenly a Bride

Rilo An comes from a world where there are no women, and what he longs for is a life mate, which is the Earth equivalent of a wife. So he leaves his world, takes on the Earth name Chris West, and bonds with Caitlyn Davis.
But she was married before, and memories of her deceased husband still linger around her home. Will he have to become like her first husband to win her love?

Comment: I got this book months ago, after I saw a positive comment in a message board somewhere. I seem to have gotten the idea this would be very romantic and an interesting take on the sci-fi/fantasy idea of alien romance but in the end it wasn't as magical as I imagined.

This book features Rilo An, a sort of man from a distant planet where there are no women, they have become extinct and now Rilo decides he wants a wife and in his planet it's possible to simply find one by paying a fee. The best option for Rilo is a woman on planet Earth as they are the most compatible to his species so he takes a interplanetary way of transportation and ends up in Earth, in front of the restaurant where his chosen woman works.
Catelyn Davis is not prepared to find the man of her life but the stranger that seems shy and out of his debt in conversation soon catches her eye and they leave the restaurant together. Catelyn doesn't know, however, that her sudden and irresistible attraction to the stranger is because he is an alien and as soon s they get intimate, they will be automatically married. Will they ever be truly happy?

Spoilers included ahead.
If this story weren't as silly as it is, Id even say it borders on chauvinistic how Rilo simply forces Catelyn to be with him sexually because she can't help it, which, in real life we wouldn't call romantic or consensual. From this point on, this became such a joke to me...and the narrative structure doesn't seem very well done either.
I was expecting a sweet story but with strong details and elements to make it romantic, a bit more explanation on how Rilo's world works and after his conversation of how his world has no women, I imagined the idea was for him to take his wife home but no! Apparently they're staying on Earth and Catelyn even wants to stay at home and not work! Her wish to not have a mortgage or credit cards debts are commendable but she wants to just have a good house and not work? Feminists of the world, stay away from this.

Not all was bad or caricatural (as I convinced myself it was) and the characters dealt with credible and realistic situations most of the time but the rest... it just seemed too weird. I consider this an exaggerated comedy (although not that funny) so I can digest what I read but it has so many things I would change, it wouldn't resemble this at all. I thought this would be adventures in space, acclimating to a new culture but it seems boring life on Earth with extras.

Weird things that develop the plot but that don't actually make sense and end up nowhere at the end of the book:
- Rilo impregnates Catelyn the first time they have sex because that's how the lifemate bond he wants takes shape and they are automatically married, proved by Catelyn's identification documents with a new name.
- Catelyn does not find it weird she got married by an alien.
- Catelyn does not find weird she got pregnant by an alien and what that entails.
- Catelyn's mother wants Catelyn married to a richer man than her other daughter's doctor fiancé so she pushes Rilo to buy an expensive ring for Catelyn and plans a wedding in surprise.
- Catelyn finds out but takes it out on Rilo who, because of the lifemate bond suffers and gets ill.

I won't talk about the secondary characters, too plain and superficial but why bother anyway because just the two main ones are annoying enough.
I don't know why this would be considered a romance, if they are falling in love, they don't seem to have the bond they should, we barely see them together developing their relationship.
I kind of get the idea the author had, but the execution left a lot to be desired.
In the end they simply try to adjust to married life on Earth. What about Rilo's world? What about him, he tried to be happy and had to go away? Is the point of him being an alien only to make the plot easy to start?

This book is a missed opportunity to present a great story. I like sci-fi and fantasy romances but I usually hope for a bit more world development. This story only used that as a starting point but it fizzled out quickly and most of the time we were reading about the controlling and annoying mother of Catelyn.
There are some interesting details, especially when Rilo's world is being discussed but it just stops being interesting. I don't feel interested enough to read more of this series.
Grade: 5/10

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