Me encanta leer historias románticas que tienen una trama importante que lleva a los protagonistas al límite de sus creencias y a conectar entre ellos. WITHIN TEMPTATION, de Tanya Holmes, trabaja a partes iguales el misterio que rodea un asesinato y el romance entre la hija de la víctima y el asesino.
Trace sale de la cárcel doce años después de ser condenado por matar a la madre de Shannon. Vuelve a la ciudad donde sucedió todo para rehacer su vida antes de salir pitando de allí. La gente le acusa, le pone la zancadilla, le maldice. Aunque Shannon trata de ayudarle, lo cual le sorprende y le atormenta. Ni siquiera ella cree que fuera inocente.
A medida que estos dos personajes mantienen unas conversaciones dramáticas y llenas de intensidad, vamos descubriendo poco a poco cómo sucedió el asesinato. Shannon sufre de amnesia post-traumática pero recupera algunos recuerdos a base de mucho sufrimiento. Con toda su voluntad y contra todo el pueblo, lucha por descubrir los verdaderos acontecimientos en torno a la muerte de su madre. Y en el proceso, desentierra terribles y oscuros secretos sobre su familia, su progenitora, su relación con ella y, sobre todo, vuelve a conectar con quien fuera su campeón siendo adolescente. Trace.
Me ha gustado mucho cómo van apareciendo detalles sobre su relación pasada y se desarrolla su conexión en el presente. Los diálogos son fantásticos porque están llenos de drama, emociones, dolor que acaban desembocando en un romance tórrido entre ellos. Toda la parte de la investigación y los secretos familiares ha sido muy interesante. La autora ha combinado sabiamente el misterio, los temores emocionales, las decisiones drásticas, las consecuencias de los actos cometidos por amor o miedo y el romance turbulento pero liberador de los protagonistas. Me ha satisfecho completamente.
Title: Within Temptation (Sons of Temptation #1)
Author: Tanya Holmes
Release Date: May 12, 2014
Romantic Mystery/Romantic Suspense. This is not erotica or romantica.
This is a romance centered around a murder mystery.
3 out of 5 -- The sexual tension is high, and the burn is slow.
Sex is character-driven, rather than plot-driven.
Love, betrayal and murder in a small town….
Twelve years after her mother's murder, Shannon Bradford fears she may have helped convict an innocent man. Even worse, her prominent family may have had something to do with it. Desperate for answers, she seeks help from the one person least likely to give it. Her best friend and childhood crush, Trace Dawson. The man she sent to prison. Serving hard time for murder has left Trace angry and bitter. As far as he's concerned, digging into the past won't replace the years he's lost or erase the hell he's lived. Now that he's free, Shannon Bradford tops his list of bad memories. But he never counted on falling in love. Set in a sleepy little town during the dead of winter, this award-winning romance novel is a tale of one woman's quest for truth and a man's struggle to forgive.
MY OPINION OF WITHIN TEMPTATION
I'm keen on stories where you have to slowly unravel the mysteries from the past. Especially when there is murder and betrayal in the core of it.
How can two people forgive each other if one of them accuses the other of murdering their mother? It was fantastic to see these two interact. As he is released from prison, Trace has to face all the demons from his past. He's drowning in blame, cornered with no future and no prospects. The woman who sent him to jail offers him a dubious hand but refuses to acknowledge her own guilt. The emotions were boiling between them. I relished every harsh word, every snippet of information that came up about the tragedy they'd shared, all that emotional conflict that crackled between them.
The plot got me glued as Trace and Shannon dig deeper into the shady events that connect them, all the while struggling with their distrust, need and disappointment. There is so much pain and feeling of loss in their broken relationship that it's physical. I wanted them to find understanding so badly. Shannon is trying to figure out her foggy memories, and he's fighting her every step of the way. Both main characters felt very alive all throughout the scenes.
Shannon may have a soft spot for Trace, but she has a will of iron that will stop at nothing (family or pressure) if she thinks corruption or conspiracies are blocking the way to what's right. I admire her for that. Her relationship with Trace dates back to her teen years so it's enlightening to see all the changes, the phases they've gone through. It's part of the drama unfolding in the present.
One of the best assets of the novel is the dialogues. They're full of pain and longing and hatred and so many deep emotions. Both the investigation and the main characters' relationship evolve vividly through them. And the tension between these two is like a rope pulled taut. Intense and so good.
Shannon has suppressed memories and she's raising controversy with her questioning the past, but she's determined to find out the truth no matter how ugly it is because she's hoping it will also be liberating. Shannon and Trace share a dark, twisted past that gripped my whole attention along with their sizzling, sensual connection. The chemistry they had was hard-earned, beautifully conducted and seriously hot.
This is a story I'm very satisfied with on the account of romance and plot.
AN EXCITING INTERVIEW!
AN EXCITING INTERVIEW!
-In two or three sentences, what are the main themes in Within Temptation?
Within Temptation is a story about the destructive nature of secrets and lies. But most importantly, it's a story about friendship, forgiveness, and the healing power of love.
-What kind of readers will it appeal to?
Those who like an equal measure of mystery, character-driven romance, and suspense. Also, readers who prefer the emotional build-up that comes with slow-burning sexual tension. There are a lot of issues the hero and heroine need to work through before anything romantic happens, but the sexual tension is there at the start, and continues to burn hot throughout. Consequently, when consummation does occur, it's very emotionally satisfying for the reader---or so I've told. :-)
In all honesty, these are they types of books I prefer to read, so that's what I write.
-Who was the first character you came up with when creating the story?
Trace. He came to me fully formed. Since his voice was the clearest and most distinct, he was the easiest to write. I knew this person even though we had absolutely nothing in common in terms of background, gender, personality, and overall life experiences.
-What is your favourite scene and why?
Hmmm. I'd have to say the dance scene because I think it's where both characters really wanted to be (emotionally speaking) all along, but there were too many obstacles between them: a murder, 12 years, lies, an engagement, coverups, prison, misunderstandings, heartache…etc.
Anyway, that scene is the first time they're able to let their guard down. The inherent intimacy in dance partnering forces a change in the way they interact. There's a special kind of magic in touching another person, and using non-verbal communication. It has the power to break through the strongest of barriers. From that point on, Trace and Shannon are no longer able to deny what's happening between them. But the feelings were always there. They were just dormant.
-Was it difficult to write any particular scene?
Most definitely. The hypnotism scene. I had trouble with how to depict it, especially the transition from past to present. Emotional intensity isn't easy to write. It became very uncomfortable at times. The pain and horror of what Shannon experienced made it difficult to stay in her head.
-Do you have any writing rituals?
Caffeine. I have to have green tea or black coffee before I start. If I don't have that, everything comes out garbled.
-What is a day like in a writer's life?
Well, you're either writing, thinking about writing, or feeling guilty because you're NOT writing. lol This is a daily occurrence. The non-writer has no idea how guilt-ridden and tortured writers are. :-) Again, if we're not writing, we're beating ourselves up because of it.
Other than those wonderful moments when I'm able to enter "the zone," the only other time I'm truly happy is right after I've finished writing because there's a sense of accomplishment. But if I can't enter the zone during my writing day, or if I don't write at all, I'm miserable.
-Do you prefer reviews or interviews?
Neither. lol I'm a shy person, so just putting myself out there is uncomfortable, be it for an interview or releasing my work for public consumption.
-What are the last two books you've read?
Seven Sons by Lili St. Germain and Rainwater by Sandra Brown (the latter is a re-read)
-What are your writing plans for the rest of the year?
I'm currently writing the standalone sequel to Within Temptation. This book (Temptation's Edge) will be a straight contemporary romance. I'm also working on a paranormal romance (The Darkest Frost).
(I want to read the sequel! I want to read it!!)
-Do you have a favourite experience with fans?
I think the most amusing thing I've encountered is something that's happening on Twitter. Within Temptation's hero has a Twitter account (@TracemoreDawson) and although I have more followers than he does, he gets, on average, more followers than I do on a daily basis. It's like 5 to 1. I think it's hilarious. He's even gotten a couple fan letters.
No more than two minutes could have passed, two of the most terrifying minutes I’d ever had. The left side of my face was numb with cold. My lips and hands ached too. I couldn’t seem to make anything move. The details came in pieces. How I’d almost been run over. How a stranger shoved me to safety just before a Jeep playing target practice could send me flying. Then as if someone had flipped a switch, sensory explosions filled the void. Horns blared. Somebody screamed. A baby was crying. And the wind howled while sounds burst forth in a crush of voices. “I swear the brakes locked!” a teenage boy yelled. “She ain’t dead, is she? Oh, jeez. Daddy’s gonna kill me!” “Don’t just stand there. Call 911!” a girl shrieked. A cell phone chimed and someone started pressing numbers. Next, an old man with a rough-and-ready voice said, “Pushed her out the way just in time. Another second and—” “Is she dead or not?” the teenager demanded again. While this was going on, I sat up, taking my time to ensure I was in one piece. Except for a sore hip, a bump on the head, and a scraped knee, I was fine. A woman standing nearby helped me, and as I got to my feet, realization dawned. Trace Dawson had tried to save me. I fought to see past the crowd into the parking lot, spotting him instantly. He’d just struggled to his feet and was staring right at me, his chin dripping blood. The people scurrying about and the cars streaming through the slush faded. Nothing but the two of us existed. Memories flooded my mind, of the quiet riot he was, of the secret crush I’d had on him, and the extraordinary friendship we’d shared so many years ago. As fast as those images came, others replaced them. I was thrust back to the crime scene, back to Mother’s corpse and the shirtless eighteen-year-old roaring obscenities while Sheriff Gray and a deputy dragged him away in handcuffs. Trace Dawson the man glared at me now, and his eyes were hard and accusing, eyes brimming with fire and ice. A chill wind rumbled past him, but he stood as still as a statue. Only his eyes moved while he looked me up and down with agonizing thoroughness. The rage. The pain. It was all there. “Trace?” I whispered. In chilling silence, he walked away without so much as a glance over his shoulder.
About the Author
Tanya Holmes is a former Romance Writers of America Golden Heart finalist, a recipient of the Maggie Award, the MICA Award, as well as Overall Winner of the Sandy Haddad Award and a two-time finalist and one-time winner of The Emily (Best of the Best). She's happily married with children and loves reading, writing and a good cup of coffee---but not necessarily in that order. Her debut novel, Within Temptation was released May 12, 2014.
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