Author: Deborah Bladon
Series: Originally published as a three part series
Genre: Erotic Romance
Received for review from Audible
Summary (from Goodreads)
Sitting next to a stranger on a flight from Boston to New York City alters the entire course of Kayla Monroe’s life. In her quest to escape the pain of rejection she jumps into the bed of an irresistible man who offers her a night that she’ll never forget.
Their connection is fierce and undeniable. When their paths cross again, a twist of fate brings her to the realization that the man she’s using to mend her broken heart is Dr. Ben Foster, a compassionate and respected physician.
Warnings about his past threaten Kayla’s future. She knows she should believe the rumors, but the moments she spends in his arms, and in his bed, wash away any doubt in her mind.
She sees a future with Ben but those closest to her won’t let her forget that the man she’s falling for has left a path of ruin in his wake that may impact her in a way she never saw coming.
Ruin gets hot and heavy within a few scant pages (probably, I was listening to the audiobook. But though I can’t remember exactly how it started, having listened to the start a few days ago now, I’m pretty sure there was some graphic sex within the first few minutes) and stays that way most of the way throughout the novel.
It’s not romance for people who like ‘and then they went up to the bedroom’ followed by some mussed hair in the morning. It’s for people who like repeated declarations about characters feeling, tasting and being ‘so good’, don’t mind lots of use of the ‘c’ word (in an erotic, rather than abusive context) and don’t need a lot of emotional build up before the clothes start coming off.
The characters, obviously.
That said, there is a definite story to Ruin. It’s not an erotic novel of the sort that is all sex no substance. Kayla and Ben have their own personal dramas to overcome – dramas that quickly become intertwined, providing some good push and pull between them.
You can tell it was initially written to be broken up into three parts. Even if the audiobook hadn’t said ‘PART TWO’, I could have told you the exact chapter where the parts finished. Which makes for a slightly odd reading experience, as it’s like ‘DUN DUN DUN’ cliffhanger, then immediately you launch into the resolution of said cliffhanger.
It’s not badly written at all, it’s just written for the serialised format (and would work great that way – I doubt many readers would have been able to not pick up the second and third instalments after being left hanging on those endings for a few weeks!) and therefore the story doesn’t follow the conventional structure you might expect from a romance novel. In fact, the story is well written enough that the drama between the characters makes sense, and doesn’t ever feel forced – which is my chief complaint about romance/erotica novels.
No, the characters are well rounded, the sex exceptionally steamy and the drama of the variety that elevates the sexual tension, rather than being there for the sake of it, or worse, detracting from the delicious chemistry that we read romance to for.
Overall, an enjoyable read, with all the right notes to thrill fans of the genre, if a little unconventional in its structure.