Island Fantasy by Kayla Perrin

Synopsis:

6938319Shayna Kenyon “knows” heartbreak. After she catches her fiance cheating on her the night of their wedding, a reality break in Jamaica is just the pick-me-up this romance author needs. Especially when Shayna arrives at the exclusive resort…and notices the seriously sexy brother checking her out.In the Caribbean for a wedding, Donovan Deval isn’t thinking about making a love connection. But it’s time to move on with his life–and that means pursuing Shayna, the exotic beauty who’s making his libido leap off the charts! Shayna wants to take it slow, but Donovan’s ready to turn up the heat. As passion ignites, he vows to turn their sizzling island paradise into the real thing.

Review:

Conflicting feelings all around.

The good:

  • Romance with people of color, by a person of color!  Woo!
  • Both Shayna and Donovan are emotionally mature adults that act rationally and do what they feel is right for them, even when family pushes them in another direction.
  • The little details are done right and add up. Vince has the perfect amount of sliminess. Donovan’s hot body has a good explanation, and I was even able to guess his sport of choice from the cover photo.
  • There are many small kids on the periphery and with a couple of small exceptions they avoid becoming plot moppets.
  • Sick of alpha a-holes? Donovan is your man! He’s thoughtful, caring, and always says the right thing at the right time.

The not-so-good:

  • Donovan always says the right thing at the right time. Without fail. He’s a good balm if you’re sick of men doing you wrong, but the lack of faults felt unrealistic. At times it felt like Shayna was falling in love with a therapist.

Donovan stood behind her, wanting to touch her but not doing so. This wasn’t the right moment. This was a time for her to evaluate something she had just discovered about her relationship and perhaps herself.

If only they had those fancy couches on the beach. While this tendency is mentioned I don’t quite buy the explanation given.

  • Shayna is a… wait for it… romance novelist. That always makes me suspicious.
  • The point of a view of a scene was all over the place, often changing right in the middle. You’re in Shayna’s head, then in the next paragraph you’re viewing the scene as Donovan. I don’t mind the technique when it’s done sparingly but I was getting mental whiplash with all the back and forth.
  • It may have just been my e-book formatting, but short replies were on the same line as the previous utterance.

Shayna’s heart slammed against her rib cage at the suggestion. “You want to join me?” “Why not?”

“But your family–“

It’s an interesting convention, and I can see it working in certain circumstances, but it was hard to get used to. My brain kept thinking that the next broken line (here, “But your family” was said by some mythical third character that just jumped out of a potted plant or something.

  • There’s a tiny suspense plot to add some external conflict but it feels thrown in and unresolved.

An okay read if you’re looking to stay away from overwrought drama but I kept falling out of the story.

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