Monday, February 17, 2014

No Such Thing by A.M. Arthur



No Such Thing by A.M. Arthur

Review by Lauren

copy from netgalley, but all opinions are my own

Official Summary: Twenty-two-year-old Alessandro Silva knows that returning to tiny Perch Creek to help his foster mother was the right thing to do. With no degree and a delinquent's reputation, he's lucky to have landed a job waiting tables. But not everyone is happy he's back, and the only thing keeping his move home from being a total bust is his boss's hot brother.

Jaime Winters spent most of his life watching the world go by, first from a series of hospitals and then from behind big stacks of textbooks. Studying is easier than facing the fact that years of heart failure means he's still a virgin at twenty-three. Until the new waiter in his sister's diner awakens desires he'd long ago given up on.

The last thing Alessandro wants is to fall for someone as fragile as Jaime. And Jaime may have a new heart, but he's scared of what giving it to another person would mean. Their no-strings-attached, instructional approach to sex keeps emotion safely at bay, until a secret from Alessandro's past forces them to confront their feelings in the present…

Review: No Such Thing is a wonderful romance novel, but it's definitely not for the younger crowd. While there are descriptive sexual scenes, I never found it to be overdone or pointless. Most of what occurs is in terms of Jaime's desire to finally live life and experience various sides of himself. At the same time, readers can see that Alessandro is trying to help and yet still falling for Jaime.

One of the things that made this an enjoyable novel is that it's more than just the relationship and sex. Alessandro has been away for a few years, but being back in Perch Creek means he has to remember his high school years and the many mistakes he made. He has grown as a person and become a much better man, but someone from his past is desperate to keep Alessandro silent on a secret they share and that puts Jaime in danger too.

There are incidents that occur throughout the book that fall under the phrase "more than meets the eye" and I liked that not everything was clear cut and easy to read. No Such Thing isn't a mystery novel, but there are aspects of one throughout the book. You suspect people, you question motives, and you want to know answers. Eventually, all is revealed and things start to wrap up a little.

As I said, I wouldn't have enjoyed No Such Thing nearly as much if it was simply about a couple and their sexual escapades. I've read plenty of romance novels and I don't mind that aspect of a book, but if there isn't more substance, it just feels flat. With No Such Thing, I really felt connected to Jaime and Alessandro and I wished them and their families well. I loved how the people around them were given "book time" and you felt like you knew them. There's Alessandro's foster mother and the two kids she's currently looking after, as well as Jaime's sister, Shannon, who has had to take care of him for a long time. These secondary relationships made the book an emotional, heartwarming read.

19 comments:

The Bookish Manicurist said...

It's great when there's a bit more depth to a romance novel and it sounds like that was the case here :)

Liviania said...

Sounds good! A romance definitely needs more than sex scenes.

Eileen said...

Wow the characterization and the mystery aspect sounds like it really adds to the overall experience. I agree, I feel like some authors rely on purely the sex to establish the chemistry between the characters. Glad that this one focused on the emotional aspect as well :) Fantastic review, Lauren! <33

Cascia Talbert said...

I don't think I would like that book, but glad you enjoyed it. Have a great Monday!

The_Book_Queen said...

Wonderful review, and I agree about how NO SUCH THING was more than just an exploration of their relationship (though I loved that part and thought it was very well done). This was my first time reading AM Arthur, but it will not be my last!

Enjoy,
TBQ

kimbacaffeinate said...

This almost has a small-town romance vibe too it, and what I love about those is that we get side stories, and town happens that add depth. Wonderful review Lauren!

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Oh I'm glad you connected to the romance. To me it isn't the smexy scenes, it's the connection that makes the story line romantic! Great review!

Synchronized Reading said...

I'm glad you enjoyed this :) And I also like romances that involves more to the story than just, you know, heated scenes and such. This one sounds pretty good. Great review!

Janina @ Synchronized Reading

Christy @ Love of Books said...

Aw, this sounds good. I love when a book gives me 'more than meets the eyes' moments.

Brandi Kosiner said...

The depth as well as the emotional growth sounds great

Giselle said...

Great review! This sounds like s sweet romantic book and I Like that it's more than just the physical relationship, too. It sounds like a more well-rounded read than most romance oriented stories.

Andrea @The Bookish Babes said...

Yours is the second positive review I've come across for No Such Thing in less than a week. I'm glad the physical aspects of the relationship worked well w/the emotional. Great review, Lauren!

Tanja - Tanychy said...

I have seen this book around but haven't got to read it just yet. I love it that you enjoyed the story and that it was more than just talking about romance and sex. Great review, Lauren :)

Erika Sorocco said...

I'm not a fan of romance novels; but I do appreciate one that delves deeper and explores other relationships.

xx

Lauren Elizabeth said...

This sounds like a wonderful, heartwarming story! I'm glad you felt a strong connection to Jaime and Alessandro and their families. I hadn't heard of this before, so thank you for putting it on my radar with your lovely review!

Krysten Gautreaux said...

That sounds really good!

Medeia Sharif said...

I somehow missed this on NetGalley. The next time I log in I'll see if it's still there.

Candace said...

This does sound good and I like that there's more to it than just the romance stuff. I need other stuff to keep it interesting.

Melanie said...

I haven't heard of this one before but the romance seems brilliant.