Susan Reviews Eye of the Storms by Lisa Gillis

Posted: January 9, 2018 in Reviews
Tags: , , , , , ,

I was so excited to read this. Lisa Gillis! I’ve known her online in passing for years, although not terribly well. I’ve heard about her Rock Fiction for even longer and been dying to read the books to see if they were as good as I was led to believe they are.

I don’t remember how or when this came across my radar as a freebie, but I grabbed it. Because Lisa Gillis! WOOT.

But… it opens in a scenario reminiscent of Jessica Lemmon’s Return of the Bad Boy, only this doesn’t put me off the way that book put my buddy Jett off. She and I talked about it, and her memory of that one is that there was an anger between the characters in the Lemmon book, where here, we had a softness between the characters, a real chemistry and desire for each other. Their meeting came out of desire for each other as people, not as their job titles. And it came out of *desire* and not revenge or whatever had powered that opening in the Lemmon book.

This also reminded me of Stina Lindenblatt’s My Song For You, in that the rocker discovers his love has a hidden kid and he’s the dad. The situation is quite different, but there it is. And the kids in both these books have some sort of physical disability, too, although Gillis never gives us any details. She’s so careful about not revealing them that we never know what the issue is, or if she herself knows if this is a real, legit problem that parents have to face. Maybe it’s something made up for the sake of convenience.

So the book has these two others that it has to live up to, and by and large it does. Marissa and Jack are likeable, although we don’t see nearly enough of Jack as a rocker and can’t really consider this to be Rock Fiction. He’s not big enough, and while it makes sense that he tames that side of himself for the child’s sake, he also loses that spark that sets a rocker apart.

My biggest issue with it came in the editing. Holy hell. Talk about sinking a really good book. Marissa apparently is a child of the water or something because she’s got a naval something or other where most people have bellybuttons… or, more properly, NAVELs. Dialogue tags are used to tell us what’s been shown (so much for “show, don’t tell” although we did stop short of “Shit,” he swore — but not by much), and the words are often used incorrectly, as well. “She assures.” — that’s not a sentence. ASSURES is a verb that needs an object, yet this happened over and over again. Interestingly, a number of erudite words are used correctly, but they also don’t fit the characters, and since this is a first-person narration, the narrator’s voice needs to match that of the characters.

A lot is left to be developed further–the situations with the parents of both Jack and Marissa, for example, and for different reasons. Jack’s parents are the typical loving parents who hold the close-knit family together. Without knowing anything else about the series, I’d wager the series revolves around them and their family. Marissa’s family isn’t entirely the opposite, but it’s clear from the get-go that her mother is toxic and her father an enabler of that toxicity. Hopefully we’ll get to see Jack give them a true comeuppance, complete with severing of the mother-daughter relationship in future books.

But one thing nagged at me, and that’s in the beginning, where Marissa says she’s part of the famous JackMa. But this story doesn’t take us to any of the hows and whys of their *public* coupling, only their personal one. And I felt like the opening, with its talk on the first page of a perfect storm and an ending with this promise of their being a celebrity couple, promised more than it delivered.

So… would I read more Lisa Gillis? I think so. The woman can write some good sex, and maybe the editing in this one is not indicative of the rest of Gillis’ body of work. I really hope it’s not because the woman clearly can write, she creates very vivid and real characters, and there’s a lot going on here that I’d like to see how it unfolds. But sheesh, she needs people who understand that cheesecakes aren’t pies, that buttercream is one word, and that you don’t need to consult a thesaurus to write well.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s