Review: Bared to You by Sylvia Day


Bared to You: A Crossfire Novel by Sylvia Day
Contemporary / Erotica
2012-05-24 (Berkley)

Rating: B
Heat: Sizzling

Heroine: Eva Tramell – Socialite, Intern at Ad Agency
Hero: Gideon Cross – Billionaire, Owns Half of Manhattan
Setting: New York, USA



I’ll start by addressing the elephant in the room – you know, that book everyone is talking about. Fifty Shades of Grey. Have I read it? Well, I read the first four or five chapters… Which isn’t enough to give an opinion on the story itself, but was more than enough to form an opinion on the writing. And my opinion is decidedly negative. No matter how great a story it might be, with writing that bad… It’s not for me.

So while people will draw comparisons between Fifty and Bared to You, and there are quite a few similarities, Bared to You is infinitely and exponentially the more well written of the two.

Now that that’s off my chest… Let’s forget about that other book and focus on Eva Tramell and Gideon Cross, shall we?

I will admit that the first person narrative was jarring at first. It isn’t terribly common in romance novels, as it limits the character perspective, and I know that some absolutely refuse to read a first person romance… but I thought it worked well with this story and I didn’t find it to be a big deal at all. It certainly made Gideon all the more mysterious.

And mysterious he is… and secretive and unreadable. After reading the book in its entirety, I still don’t feel like I know who Gideon Cross is. I know that he’s rich (an understatement, really) and devastatingly good-looking. He owns half of Manhattan and dresses impeccably. He’s estranged from his family. He is riddled with deep emotional scars. And he likes to be in control at all times. I found Gideon to be quite the puzzle—albeit a very sexy one.

As our narrator, Eva is much more transparent. All of her secrets are shared with us throughout… and each one revealed is quite the doozy. From the beginning, you know that Eva’s life hasn’t been the pretty picture it seems. However, it isn’t until the middle of the book that you find out just how not pretty it really is. And it explained a lot about her. It’s no surprise that Eva is easily jealous. That she’s more flight than fight.

Eva and Gideon’s relationship can only be described as dysfunctional… but working on it. It starts out as physical attraction and blossoms into two kindred souls seeking understanding and comfort. The growth in their relationship was unusual, to say the least. There wasn’t very much talking between them—it was more so feeling between them. At one point, Eva asks, "Is it possible for two abuse survivors to have a functional romantic relationship?" And I believe that sums them up quite nicely. Two victims of sexual abuse trying to make their relationship work. It added depth to the story, gave reason to the times when there was sex, sex, sex instead of much needed heart-to-heart conversations.

This is very character-driven story. There is no plot, per say. The plot is the characters and their relationship with each other. Their journey. Even though Eva and Gideon are both adults in their twenties, it had that first love/grand romance thing going for it. An all-consuming, can’t-get-enough-of-you, need you – want you – love you, love at first sight kind of romance.

It is a wild ride, that’s for sure. A whiplashing, emotional rollercoaster. And, just to warn you: the end is rather abrupt. Luckily, we only have to wait four months for the next installment – Deeper into You.

Favorite Quote:

“Are you sleeping with anyone?”
The question was asked so casually it took a second to process what he’d said.
I inhaled sharply. “Why is that any business of yours?”
He looked at me and I saw what I’d seen the first time we’d met—tremendous power and steely control. Both of which had me taking an involuntary step back. Again. At least I didn’t fall this time; I was making progress.
“Because I want to fuck you, Eva. I need to know what’s standing in my way, if anything.”


Thoughts While Reading:



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