Thursday, February 5

Review: Talk Me Down by Victoria Dahl

One book that has gotten quite a buzz in blogland in the beginning of 2009 is Talk Me Down by Victoria Dahl. Many opinions... not all bad or good... but enough to make me a bit apprehensive. See, I had this book on my TBB list since October - just because the cover and synopsis appealed to me. Then, I started reading some of the reviews and they had me a bit wary... Luckily, Ames got her hands on this book early and enjoyed it! So she gave me the push I needed to take the plunge.

Talk Me Down by Victoria Dahl
published by HQN books in January 2009

Molly Jenkins has one naughty little secret: her job as a bestselling erotic fiction author. Until her inspiration runs dry—thanks to a creepy ex — and it's time to skip town and move back to tiny Tumble Creek, Colorado.

One look at former high school hunk chief of police Ben Lawson and Molly is back in business. The town gossip is buzzing at her door and, worse still, a stalker seems to be watching her every move. Thankfully, her very own lawman has taken to coming over, often. The only problem now is that Molly may have to let the cat out of the bag about her chosen profession, and straitlaced Ben will definitely not approve...

Genre: contemporary romance
Series: none

Ames: Let's do this!

Nath: LOL. All right, here we go...

I can see why you love the story :D Brother's bestfriend + sister, that's one of your favorite theme :D I've been on the look-out for this book since October... then, when the reviews start coming, I was a bit apprehensive. However, I ended up really enjoying it :D

Ames: Hmm...the brother's best friend bit wasn't what drew me to this book in the first place and it wasn't really a big deal. LOL, I really enjoyed it too. I had a few LOL moments.

Nath: Me too :) My favorite part of the book was Molly and Ben's relationship. They had a past and easy camaraderie. They did have a relationship despite all the sex.

Ames: They did have a relationship, despite Molly's efforts. I found that she did not communicate well and so that kept things pretty shallow between them for a while. But because of the past, it was ok. Because if that was two strangers? No way would it have worked. I enjoyed the fact that Ben was drawn to Molly time and time again.

Nath: Well, you know, Molly wasn't looking for a long-term relationship. She was looking for a fling, so it makes sense she kept things shallow. I think the fact that they knew each other so well beforehand is what turned this fling into a relationship. As for the sex, I thought it was okay. I don't see why someone said that Molly was like a 'dog in heat'. She was a sexual woman, yes, but she didn't go overboard.

Ames: I know which review you're referring to. That review just pissed me off! It was taking things out of context and what is so wrong about a woman enjoying sex? NOTHING.

Nath: I don't get it either.

Anyway, one of the big deal about this book in almost all the reviews was the fact that Molly was keeping secrets from Ben. Personally, I was okay with Molly not telling Ben what she was doing for a job because 1) nobody knew and 2) she thought she was only having a fling... in which case, i don't see why she would tell him something she never told anyone, knowing he would freak out. The fact that she considered telling him was a major step for her. Also, will people really believe that Ben has been her inspiration for all her books? Okay, so he was for one... big deal.

However, like most, I'm not okay with her not telling about Cameron earlier. I can understand why though, but still... it's stupid, especially when you're being stalked. I have to say, Cameron was the weakest part of the storyline in my opinion and I wish he actually hadn't been part of the story. Due to Cameron and his "kidnapping," I felt like Ms Dahl really rushed to wrap things up... and as a result, Ben and Molly never got to work out their issues under normal circumstances. Instead, it was rushed and they made up after the "dangerous situation" and "I could have lost you" emotions.

Ames: I agree with you about both points. Not telling Ben about Cameron seemed stupid to me. Like that was taking her inability to open up a bit too far. Not saying anything about her job until SHE was ready, ESPECIALLY knowing that Ben was a stickler for privacy and wanting to avoid scandal? That made sense. But she could have told Ben about Cameron. That whole bit when Cameron comes to town and tries to make nice with Ben - that could have led to a BIG MISUNDERSTANDING. As it was, Ben got mad. So it still kind of went in that direction.

I agree also about the ending being rushed.

Nath: Did you actually wonder why Ben stayed in Tumble Creek? I mean, if he hated scandal as much as he did, the logical step would have been for him to move away to some place where nobody knew about his father's scandal... Like his mother did. Why stay in Tumble Creek where everyone knew?

Ames: You make a good point about Ben staying in the same town. I never even picked up on that.

Nath: It's just something I was wondering. Aside from that though, Ben was a great hero :) I like his confidence and the fact that he was cleary well in his skin. Not too macho, not too feminine LOL :)

As for Molly, she's never going to be my favorite heroine, but she wasn't bad either. She was a fun and happy character. It's not just that she wasn't looking for a relationship with Ben, but I think with any man. That's why she broke it up with Cameron. Why, when it's the hero, we accept it, but when it's the heroine, we don't? She was looking for a fling and it turned into a relationship. She panicked, like most heroes do...

Ames: Yeah, Molly was a good heroine in that she was straight forward about sex and she was strong, but she also has her flaws, so that prevents her from being perfect. She's more realistic that way and I like that in my contemporary romances, for their to be some semblance of reality. LOL

Ok, I gave this a grade when I first finished reading it, but I'm changing it now upon reflection. I'm giving it a B-. It was good, but I had some quibbles with it. :P

Nath: LOL, funny, seems like I'm going to give it a higher grade than you. This was a B for me. I thought it was a solid book, except for the ending and the fact she didn't tell Ben about Cameron.


Rosie said...

*gulp* I just skimmed your review and checked the grades at the end because I just started reading this one last night. Phew! Disaster diverted...we're in the 'B' range.

Isabel said...

Nice review. I've never read this author before. I'll look out for this one.

Holly said...

Meh, I had a harder time stomaching Molly and the way she acted. In the beginning she didn't bother me at all, but the longer she played games with Ben and the longer she ignored her personal safety the less I respected her.

Take away her childish and selfish thoughts and her need to put herself in danger, however, and she would have been wonderful.

Good review. =)

KT Grant said...

I am trying to wrap my mind around the RT review stating Molly was a dog in heat. Just because she was sexually assured and enjoyed pleasure? She was responsible using her blue toy and making sure she and Ben were protected. Ben had all those dirty thoughts also, so does that make him a hound dog?
I thought this was a cute read.
Great review ladies :D

Rowena said...

I want to read this book to see for myself if I would like it or not, I'm easily pleased but I've seen so many good and bad reviews of this, I'm confused. LOL. Thanks for the review though ladies, it was great!

Lori said...

I'm easily pleased, too, Wena. I've got this one in my TBR. Sitting in my e-reader as we speak. Along with 16 free Harlequins, LOL.

Great review, guys! I'm looking forward to reading it.

nath said...

Rosie - Ohhhh, I can't wait to read what you think of the book!! Basically, your opinion will depend on how you feel about Molly.

Isabel - I think this is her first contemporary... however, she has an historical out. She was a new author to me as well.

Holly - Seriously, I think this book would have been so much better without the whole Cameron stalking thing... Without her, her character would have been well :)

Katie - I really didn't understand why that RT reviewer wrote that. Seriously, that's not something to write, even if you don't like the heroine... anyway.

Glad that you thought it was a cute read, I agree :D

Rowena - Yeah, this book is a hard one to categorize :P I guess you need to read it in order to make up your own mind :)

Lori - Hopefully, you'll enjoy it Lori :D LOL, so it's sitting in the e-reader... how long will it stays there?

Chantal said...

I passed over everything just to see the grades. I didn't want to read any spoilers because I have not read it yet.

Kristie (J) said...

I'm like Holly. I just couldn't warm up at all to Molly and her games of "I'm not gonna teee-eeell"

Anonymous said...

I never read Victoria Dahl and with the mixed reviews, I thought I would pass on this one. Then I read "brother's best friend" and now I have this book on my list of maybe-buy books. LOL

C2 said...

I agree that the whole stalker-ex storyline could have been left completely out. The book would have been better for it, IMHO.

Molly's refusal to talk went on way too long. Annoying.

I'm interested to see Dahl's next book, though.

Excellent review, ladies. :o)

nath said...

Seneca - I can't wait to see if you like it or not, Seneca :D Should be interesting :)

Kristie - I don't know, I think she was okay... but her character could have been improved and in that case, the book would have been even better :D

Taja - LOL, some particular plotlines are just our weaknesses right? :P Can't help it, we need to get our hands on them :P

C2 - I'm looking forward to her next book as well :) I really enjoyed the time Molly and Ben spent time together :)