Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Etopia Press on February 1, 2013
Purchase Links: Amazon ✦ Barnes & Noble
Book Links: Goodreads
The problem with twins is that they look so much alike…
By day, Claire Robertson is a staff writer for a small publication in Seattle. But when the lights go down, she writes sizzling and oh-so-naughty erotica. She keeps these stories safely tucked away, hiding her secret fantasies of her hero, Dustin Murray. The man who stole her heart six years ago. And then jumped into bed with her twin sister.
Dustin never forgot Claire, or her twin sister’s lies that tricked him into sleeping with her. Nor has he forgotten that her sister’s threats have kept him silent for six years and cost him the woman he loved. Now that Claire’s returned home, Dustin isn’t about to lose her again. But it’ll be another thing to convince Claire he’s prepared to do whatever it takes to win her back.
When Claire accidentally sends the wrong story to her editor, things really heat up. With hot the new black in publishing, her editor thinks he’s struck gold and queues the story for publication. The last thing Claire needs is for everyone to learn that she’s got secrets of her own…
After reading the premise for Secret Desire by Susan D. Taylor, I was interested in reading a story about second chances at love; complete with all the complications, misunderstandings and insecurities that usually plague the heroine and hero. Secret Desire had all the usual complications, but the overall story, as well as characters, failed to deliver.
We spend a lot of time with Claire and Dustin, and rightfully so as they are the lead characters. However, in books with well-rounded and dynamic protagonists, and a well put together plot, this isn’t a problem, but in the case of Secret Desire, maybe a strong supporting character would have given this story the spark it sorely lacked. Because I found both Claire and Dustin to be extremely dull and the plot wasn’t much better. My interest in the characters, their motivations, their hopes and fears, and their romance, was pretty much none existent about less than halfway into the book.
Claire spends most of the book dissatisfied with her job as a journalist (when she’s not grieving for her parents or pining for Dustin). What she truly wants is to write erotic romance novels, but she’s too afraid to do so, due to her fear of what everyone else will think of her, in particular her twin sister Fran. She also spends a lot of her time comparing herself to Fran and coming up short, because Fran has the more glamorous life, has the more prestigious job, house, etc. Dustin spends most of his time pining for Claire while trying to rekindle what they once had. He also spends a lot of time contemplating Fran and the role she plays in his and Claire’s lives.
From the glimpses we are given of Fran through the eyes and recollections of our hero and heroine, Fran is a bully who’s extremely competitive, cold, bossy and manipulative. And if that’s not enough reason to dislike Fran, she plays a huge role in the reason why Claire and Dustin are not together in the present.
Now, I in no way liked Fran. She was a very unpleasant character with no redeeming qualities, and was blatantly used as a means to cause angst and conflict for the hero and heroine. But in the end, her character was much more entertaining and interesting than Claire and Duncan, in spite of the very few glimpses of the character we got through phone conversations, old memories and the small cameo she put in near the end of the story.
Overall, Secret Desire just wasn’t my cup of tea. The hero and heroine were boring, the romance was uninspiring, and the plot just wasn’t engaging enough to keep me interested. (Reviewed by Quiana – The Book Lover).