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Climbing Stories

I love politics & I am a bit of a history buff. I have a weakness for romance & that includes erotic smut! I'm a serious reviewer, but I can read almost anything. A new genre or a deft writer can make a story sing.

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Right Now
Marie Hall
Bound by Vengeance (SKALS, #2)
Adriana Noir
The Opportunist (Love Me With Lies, #1) - Tarryn Fisher
3.5 stars
Okay, I took the plunge and finished this! Before I analyze this couple, this love story, I will start with a bit of praise for the author:
1. Descriptive Language: Tarryn Fisher has a gift of describing emotions and the characters' personality/features.
2. 1st person narrative: It should be merited when an author can give you an unlikable character and make you still root for her even though said character is a freakin' nutcase! LOL

Now to the couple:

This story, IMO, involves two selfish people who happen to love each other with a first-love, a great chemistry and ginormous amount of conceit and infatuation.

Olivia: has so many trust issues, self-esteem issues, that she holds herself off from completely giving herself, but she has no trouble teasing a little with the promise of who she could be if she'd just loosen up and be honest. On top of this aspect of her personality is the fact that this young lady is a true hustler. She knuckles through life with an inner ambition to be successful, on her own terms, and marry successfully. But, with being a hustler, Olivia always remembers where she truly comes from, looks out for numero uno (herself) and plays to win. What does this equal? Lies, lies, lies and one major "train wreck"!
Caleb: quintessential rich boy with all the looks and all the right moves (on the surface). The reader gets Caleb's point of view 1-2 times, briefly, so to go on inference, I would surmise that Caleb knew Olivia's true personality all along. He isn't blameless in the wreck of their relationship. Throughout the story, it is difficult to see why someone like Olivia is so hung up on him. Sure, he is romantic, comical and has wit. He is even shown to have some deep thoughts and he defies his mother to be with low-class Olivia. However, for about 3/4 of the story, he doesn't seem to have enough to handle her. Then, his POV is revealed and the reader can glimpse that Caleb is more than meets the eye, and it is NOT good, because he is playing his own game, his own hustle, as well.

At the end of this story comes the character, Noah, whose dialogue reads like he is a sage. Two quotes, said by Noah, the Sage, to finish this:

I’m saying that you don’t love him as much as you love yourself.

This is Noah responding to Olivia's incredulity at his doubt of her love for Caleb. This was especially poignant because Olivia hurt so much with her love for Caleb, yet ultimately it is caused by her alone; therefore, she becomes the only believer of her epic love for the man she can't let go of. Ironically, this solidifies her obsession with herself, thus, her love of herself 1st and foremost.
I think that after the first time you give your heart away, you never get it back. The rest of your life is just you pretending that you still have a heart.

Noah says this, and Olivia takes it to heart, almost too seriously, and this saying becomes a motif that flickers in the story's conclusion. As soon as I read it, I thought...Hell no, this isn't true for everybody and in some sense, not true at all, because lending credence to it means there aren't second chances at love.

This didn't sit well with me, but I synthesized it in relation to the story and figured this: If you give your heart away, it is either crushed or taken care of. If crushed, you still have possession of it's pieces because the receiver rejected your gift. With those pieces you can either mend or stay in heartbreak purgatory. Of course, if you choose purgatory, it means you couldn't have truly loved at all, because either you didn't love yourself to begin with, or you're too busy being victim, thereby seeking vindication.

All in all, The Opportunist was a good enough read of a story whose cautionary tale effects a lot of human reaction. However, if there is a sequel, I am not sure I'd want to apprehensive about visiting the mind of Olivia or Caleb again.Update7.26.13:Seriously, I may read the following 2 books now that they're published:D!

Theme song for Olivia and Caleb, Kelly Clarkson's "Addicted"