If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. - Oscar Wilde
We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading. - B. F. Skinner
No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. - Mary Wortley Montagu

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Review: Core Attraction by Ashlinn Craven / @pumpupyourbook @AshlinnCraven

Title: Core Attraction
Author: Ashlinn Craven
Publisher: Crimson Romance
Release Date: April 27, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
ARC Received From: Pump Up Your Book

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Living with her dad and single since the Ice Age, Fiona Halpin’s plan is to get a promotion, a swanky house, and a boyfriend—strictly in that order. So when Dr. Declan MacCarthy and his protest leaflets turn up outside the power plant where she handles public relations, she’s almost too busy doing damage control to notice how gorgeous he is. Almost.

Declan has returned from Japan to settle in his Irish hometown and live a meaningful life by treating his cancer patients and joining a campaign against the biggest local employer’s deadly radiation risks. But that means facing off with the fierce Fiona, who’s as protective of her company as a pack of Rottweilers.

As Fiona slowly warms to Declan and his passion for his cause, a strong compatibility and common ground develop between them. But can she let down her defenses enough to let him reach her inner core, or is their passion only heading for meltdown?

Fiona was, honestly, mostly likeable. She had a great best friend in Sarah, a stellar relationship with her dad, and a job she was damn good at. But there was this...air about her that kept me from really seeing and knowing her. She was driven to be the best of the best at her job, and ambition is admirable, yet it seemed to be all that mattered to her. I'm all for going hard after one of your dreams but not at the expense of other dreams you might have, you know? And it felt like she was willing, at first, to do whatever it took to forward her position at work by going after Declan.

Declan walked a fine line protesting against the very plant that sponsored the hospital he worked at. The reason he sided with Half-Life was understandable. After all, he'd had a front row seat to watching his wife deteriorate because of nuclear fallout and that couldn't have been pretty. But going up against the hospital's largest sponsor, even if it was with the backing of a group? Yeah, I'm not sure about that one. Neither was I sure about his using Fiona to further his cause.

I will say that both Declan and Fiona had time in each others worlds. Fiona saw first hand how Declan cared for his patients, how determined he was to help them go through chemo and radiation and transplants. Declan's time at the plant might have been forced and was extremely brief and a bit rushed, but he managed to see and hear how the everything at the plant was done to the letter. That quick glance into Fiona's world showed him that short of a catastrophe the people employed by the plant did their very best to meet all government safety standards.

While I liked the premise of this story and its characters, I struggled to connect with it and them. The writing is good, the story flows well, and the characters are pretty well fleshed out but there was something missing that my heart needed but didn't find.

Ashlinn Craven writes about people who find love, themselves, and each other, in testing circumstances. When she’s not writing, she’s working her hi-tech job or doing her lo-tech mom routine. Currently living in Switzerland, she delights in hearing from her readers from all around the world.

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