Friday, August 22, 2014

Review: Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemeyer

Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemeyer
Series: Stand Alone Novel
Published by Bethany House
Pages: 346
Genre: Christian/Romance/Historial
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Nicole Renard is on a mission: find the perfect heir and husband before her father dies and his company, Renard Shipping, is overtaken by their business rivals. However, a wrench is thrown into her plans when she finds herself short of funds and takes a job working for Darius Thornton - a man obsessed with boiler explosions after one nearly took his life. Although the mutual attraction is almost immediate, Nicole must continue on to find the heir her father needs because this man is completely unsuitable. But...Does God have other plans for the pair?

I've always wondered why some romance novels work well for me while others, even though they have all the little things I love in my romances, don't. Reading this book, I finally figured it out. I like slow-burn romances. Where there's an attraction and a more than physical connection before they get to touch in any, even vaguely intimate, way.

This book didn't have that and that has to be one of my biggest complaints. The romance progressed far too quickly for me. Fairly early in the book, the characters kissed and - while it wasn't with romantic intent - I had warning bells going off in my head that this wasn't going to be the romance I hoped. Not only did things happen quickly in the book, but the characters were already confessing love after knowing each other little more than a week. In fact, the bulk of the story takes place in a span of two weeks. Actually, probably a little less.

I also wish that the characters had been a bit more quirky. Their descriptions sounded quirky, but it seemed more like we were informed of their quirkiness than actually getting to see it. Darius was described as this socially inept, kind of overly intelligent guy. His social ineptness led him to forget two people's name once each and - oh, the horror - when he works he rolls the cuffs of his shirt up and looks a little disheveled. He was a nice guy (so happy about that, anyway) but he never seemed to really have any true reason for being 'socially inept'. And Nicole was likable, but she never really came into more than that for me.

Now this last complaint is even more personally subjective than anything else in this review. I really which there had been a more historical aspect to the story. I know the author did her research, and there was a nice little snip of historical accuracy in the epilogue - but if the whole story had more of that, I would have been much happier.

After all these minor complaints, I'm not saying this was a bad book. In fact, it was a fun read. The words flowed and the author obviously is talented. Everything came together nicely and it was just really well done technically.

While I'm in no hurry to read more by Ms. Witemeyer, I would recommend her books to those that like these kinds of stories. In fact, my mom is currently reading this book and I'm really curious to know what she thinks of it.