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Focus of Desire - Kim Baldwin

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Genre: Romance / Author: Kim Baldwin / Paperback / 239 Pages / Book is published 2007-08-03 by Bold Strokes Books

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      15.05.2009 14:00
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      Don't waste your money

      Kash is an international celebrity, a photographer famous for the number of women she sleeps with. Isabel is a cake decorator who wins a trip around the world with her best friend Gillian. Kash is hired to take photo's of the trip. When Isabel and Kash meet there is an instant attraction but how can a romantic cake decorator live happily ever after with a cynical celebrity photographer?

      This is the first (and last) book written by Kim Baldwin that I've read. I bought it second hand on ebay because it costs £11.99 to buy a new copy of any of Baldwin's books. You would think that this meant that her books were good, that they were worth paying double the price of a normal paperback book but you would be wrong. This book was awful. I can only guess that there are so few lesbian romance authors that those who want to read lesbian romance are willing to pay higher prices, even when the book isn't very good.

      I didn't like the writing style of this book. At points during the book I was left confused about whose perspective Baldwin was writing from because she kept changing it. One paragraph it would be Isabella, then it would be Kash and then back to Isabella. I also thought that the dialogue seemed very unrealistic and sounded like the characters were reading from a (badly written) script. I have read books in the past that had a writing style that I didn't like and still managed to enjoy the book, unfortunately this book doesn't have any redeeming features.

      The characters are completely two dimensional. Isabella is a romantic who is generally very cheerful and likes to help people. Kash likes to have sex with lots of women, is very cynical and has a problem with the fact that she's approaching forty. That is all there is to the characters, until a point in the book where they seem to both have personality transplants. I understand that characters develop and people do change but there isn't much development of the characters in this book, they just suddenly change with almost no warning or build up to the change.
      I didn't particularly like or dislike either character, they didn't evoke any kind of strong emotion in me. Having read the book I don't feel like I know either of them any better now than I did when all I had read was the back cover of the book.

      There wasn't much of a plot to this book but I was expecting that, it's a romance novel and plots aren't necessary. Romance, however, is. I can honestly say that I can't recall a single romantic scene in this book. There were sex scenes, and there was a lot of interaction between the two characters but there wasn't a single point in the book where I felt like it was romantic. I didn't even want the characters to end up together which is pretty awful when the book is supposed to be romance. There was no tenderness between the two characters, there wasn't even friendship and at no point in the book did I believe that they could live happily together.
      I didn't find the sex scenes to be very erotic. For the most part they were just really boring and repetitive.

      It wasn't just the sex scenes that were boring and repetitive, the entire book was. The characters go over the same thoughts again and again and for the majority of the book I felt like there was no progression at all. This book is only 239 pages long but it probably could have been written in 100 if Baldwin hadn't including so many pages that were almost but not quite the same, where there was just a slight variation on what one of the characters had been thinking in the chapter before that.

      I do not recommend this book. It's boring, it's repetitive, the characters are two dimensional and I didn't like the writing style.

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