Review: A Heart Not Easily Broken by MJ Kane

Posted: June 16, 2014 in Reviews
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Author MJ Kane was kind enough to send me a copy of A Heart Not Easily Broken, even though she insisted it’s not Rock Fiction.

And despite some waffling on my part, she’s right. But it’s close, especially because there’s no way Brian could have any other career.

Let me back up. A Heart Not Easily Broken is the story of Ebony, a black woman who is very driven to succeed in life, and Brian, a white man who is very driven to succeed in life, on his own terms. I like these people. They work hard, they are focused and dedicated.

At first meeting, Ebony makes it clear she’s not interested. Brian’s not her type – he’s not black, he’s not beefy. But he’s … something. And it’s that something that catches her interest that he picks up on. He pursues her, even when she keeps saying no. But he’s cute about it, totally not threatening, and showing up on her front doorstep is truly kismet. How can she resist?

It’s nice to see a couple who are so good for each other – and to each other. And to their friends, family, and coworkers, too. This is wholesome, heartwarming stuff, and it doesn’t shy away from the sexy, either. What a great balance. I like Ms. Kane’s worldview.

But then Brian’s creepy roommate decides to lord his power over Ebony. Because let’s face it: that’s what rape is. It’s not about sex. It’s about power, and Javan may be a player, but there’s a line between a player and disturbed, and he crosses that line with Ebony. And, like every person drunk on his own power, he’s convinced nothing bad will happen to him.

Other reviewers commented that the book didn’t seem real at this point. I disagree. I thought Ebony’s reaction was very real. I could relate to her, to her need to keep things a secret, her fear that this one event would ruin so many lives.

It was when she finally told Brian that I began to have a problem. That’s because he doesn’t believe her, even though he has known Javan for years. I can understand if there was shock and an unwillingness to believe the entire scenario – no one wants to hear something so heinous about a person they have such a long history with, and that the woman they love has had to endure something so life-changing. But once Brian comes around, I bought back in.

The next snag I hit was over Javan’s personal fallout. It was too easy, and the statement that he knew how to manipulate people because he was a psychologist just hit me the wrong way. I don’t doubt there are people who do behave this way, but in Javan’s case, I think his issue is that he’s just a sociopath. The dude has problems, and as with every other character in the book, he’s not all bad. He’s a fleshed-out character, by and large, and his mental issues are well drawn.

So… in the end, this is a great read. The publisher could benefit from a better copy editor; there were too many mistakes to overlook, and not mistakes of the stylistic kind, either. Some misused words, semicolons that had no business being there… it’s a shame when a publisher doesn’t make an author look her best, and MJ Kane is an author worth making look good.

I’m grateful to MJ for sending me a review copy. Rock Fiction it ain’t, but it’s a rockin’ good read.

Want to see what you think? I’ve still got those two copies to give away, thanks to MJ. Leave me a comment and I’ll draw a winner.

  1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with your readers! I appreciate your review!

  2. Thank YOU, MJ. Here’s to a long career, lady.

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