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Karlynp & The Doggone World

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Bared to You  - Sylvia Day 4.5!! WAAAAY better than that Fifty Shades of Grey. I do get the comparison, but truly this is a MUCH better read. Simply put, this book had the polish that FSoG grossly lacked. (I read FSoG just before I read this one. Sadly, I found it disturbing and only gave it a 1-star review.)

The major similarities:
--hero is a young (late 20's), gorgeous, brilliant zillionaire business mogul who sports non-stop erections and has sex on the brain 24/7
--hero has a controlling and obsessive desire for the heroine, including a jealous streak that is off-the-charts
--hero a has a dark and tortured soul that shapes his very world, brought on by years of abuse as a child
--hero maintains a platonic relationship with his past sexual partners, which drives a major wedge with the heroine
--HOT, HOT, HOT sex scenes

The major differences:
-- Gideon isn’t a predator. Unlike Grey, Gideon never tries to coerce and manipulate Eva into doing anything that is for his sole pleasure alone. He doesn’t try to coerce and manipulate her into believing his desires should be the only desires that matter.
--Eva has about 100+ IQ points on Ana, and can actually converse in an intelligent conversation without all of the “Whoa!”, “Oh, My!” and “Gasp!” (To say I like Eva better than Ana is an understatement!)
--Gideon isn’t into ‘period sex’. Yuck.
--No BDSM, at least not yet. This series will continue, so hard to say where it will go. Hmmmm. There was some light talk of subs & doms, pain-as-pleasure…etc.
--No Arnica cream to sooth ‘bruising, sprains and injuries’. (Christian’s remedy for a bruising sore ass, oh lovely)
--The writing is great. Tight, edited and well plotted. It is also quite refreshing when compared to the comic book tone of FSoG.
--Not just ONE, but TWO main characters with damaged souls. (Yep, Eva has a dark soul too and it controls her.)

There are some other small similarities to FSoG, but for the most part I found this book stood well on its own. Gideon was a damaged soul, and the relationship between him and Eva often felt like a co-dependent mess and not a true romance. Eva’s past continues to haunt her, so the main question is can two damaged souls build a healthy relationship? Beneath all the layers of their relationship I did believe they will find true love and heal as best they can from their past. I never believed that with Grey and Ana in FSoG. This was a gripping story and I loved watching these two come together and try to get it right.

If you are holding off reading this because you didn’t like FSoG, you might miss out. If you like dark, edgy erotica romance with great writing, then forget the comparison to FSoG. I can’t wait to see how Sylvia Day closes their story.

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Sept 21 - Audiobook review and update
The audiobook version of this book is really good! Loved the narrator.

I think I enjoyed this book even more the second time through. The connection between Gideon and Eva is so deep and emotionally raw, and I think I connected with them even more in my re-read. They are intensely interesting characters, both individually and together as a couple. I picked up on many of the subtle details this time that helps to further explain why they are damaged souls, and why their turbulent relationship might be the healthiest thing for them.