Thursday, August 25, 2011

Book Review: Forbidden Pleasures

By Gail Allison
Las Vegas? Hong Kong? Belize? And all without buying a single plane ticket? Yes please!! In "Forbidden Pleasures,"Jo Rees offers exotic locations, flamboyant high-rollers, and an exclusive look behind the scenes at casinos, the people who run them, and the characters who frequent them.

Savannah Hudson is the wild-child of Michael “Hud” Hudson, a Las Vegas casino magnate and career arch-enemy of Roberto Enzo. Hud isn’t happy with the way that Savannah is living her life: in a liquor and drug fueled haze. Savvy can’t see a problem with it, even after she’s bundled off to rehab at the hand of her best friend. Once faced with the tragic demise of her father, however, she has to decide if she can rise above the future that she’s built for herself and become the daughter that Hud has always wanted.

Lois Chan, an ex-cop, is head of security at Roberto Enzo’s dazzling casino in Las Vegas. When an assassination attempt on a senator during Fight Night at Enzo’s casino ends in Lois getting shot, the murky past that she had been trying to ignore is dragged back into the spotlight. Not only does she have a lot to lose career-wise, but she’s trying to rebuild a relationship with the daughter from her previous marriage, who is now living with her ex-husband and his new wife.

Now, stop and take a breath. All this action, along with the sheer volume of characters involved, can feel like a lot to take in, and with the paperback edition clocking in at 560 pages, it does feel a bit intimidating when you first pick it up. Rest assured: you’ll be flying through this beach read the minute you open it up. The characters are painted so vividly that I never once ran the risk of getting the different storylines jumbled together as can easily happen in books with this much action.

I’m a big fan of Jo Rees, simply because even though her books may look daunting due to the number of pages, there are no wasted words. Her descriptions are fun, perhaps slightly over-exaggerated (of COURSE Savannah, the poor little rich girl, is blonde), but stay very readable, while the action continues from page to page. I found myself not knowing which storyline I was looking forward to more in the next chapter, and the way they all tied together? Delicious.

If you’re looking for a beach read (no matter what the season), and you’re comfortable with very descriptive scenes (the lush backdrops are phenomenal, but the love scenes are pretty steamy...Grandma, please don’t read this book), definitely check out "Forbidden Pleasures" by Jo Rees.

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Amy said...

very sexy and provocative cover. from a one sec glance girl on cover looks a bit like Jewel. Yes, and no matter the season, always love beach reads

Gail Allison said...

I think that's part of the beauty of this book: at first glance, it looks like it's going to be a fairly standard one-dimensional romance read, but there is so much character growth and development that it ends up being a lot more!

Becky said...

and that's the magic of reviews to tell us what we need to hear! I'd read this now