I Found This Book Disturbing In So Many Ways ***Spoiler Warning***
“But he didn’t really know her, or about the things that had happened in her life to make her a woman of strength and character, a woman who at only twenty-three was one of England’s most successful fashion designers while still managing to be what she loved best of all, an attentive and loving mother to Dani.”
FINAL DECISION: I could not like this book. The discussion and consequence of rape was too dated to be acceptable to me. In addition, for a woman who claims to be so strong, Willow felt entirely dominated by her rapist husband.
THE STORY: Willow Stewart is a fashion designer with a young daughter. Recently divorced, Willow has dark secret that is painful and shameful to her. When her ex-husband’s cousin, Jordan St. James begins to want to spend time with her, Willow knows that Jordan hasn’t forgiven her because he believes she trapped his cousin into marriage. Yet Jordan is attracted to Willow himself.
OPINION: This book fails on many levels. Willow was raped by her ex-husband in order to force her into marriage. The fact that she then tries to justify herself staying with him and wanting him to have a relationship with their daughter made me sick. Her justification of this behavior is that she didn’t want her daughter exposed has being the product of rape. But she wants her daughter to love a rapist as her father. In addition, she claims to be so strong from her past, but she folds immediately when her ex-husband begins to threaten her again. The truth is that Willow is weak and needs some serious therapy to deal with her violation. This subject is just too serious to be handled in a book of this length. The romance completely fails because Jordan doesn’t even know about the rape until the end and then everything is resolved in a couple of pages. For me, this is a book that might speak of the time it was written, but would never be acceptable today.
WORTH MENTIONING: I did appreciate that the hero and the villain’s parents believed Willow when the rape was revealed.
CONNECTED BOOKS: VELVET PROMISE is a standalone.
STAR RATING: I give this book 1 star.