Thursday, December 13, 2012

Review of Meant To Be

Marienne and Daniel are meant to be...except they’re already married to other people. The two get to know each other, and their friendship blossoms, as Marienne and her husband, and Daniel and his wife become friends. Ms. Stivali shows the reader how wrong both marriages are, and I found myself asking why didn’t they see it sooner? But it wouldn’t allow for much of a story if they had.

Meant To Be is a love story about two people who became best friends before becoming lovers. I like how Ms. Stivali’s characters are never unfaithful, at least in the physical sense. Emotionally, Marienne and Daniel are closer to each other than to their spouses. But it was a natural progression, and there was never a question of unfaithfulness--except for in their minds. Because they are both married to the wrong people, Marienne and Daniel are able give the other the emotional support that is lacking in their marriages, and the reader cheers them on as they grow closer.

Watching the two people, who were meant to be, fall in love is the heart and soul of this book. As their relationship progresses from friendship to genuine love, their marriages begin to fail. But I like that their marriages don’t fail because Marienne and Daniel find themselves loving one another instead of their spouses; the marriages failed because they simply weren’t meant to be and Marienne and Daniel are. Although it takes them a while to admit that to themselves, much less to each other.

Meant To Be shows the slow, almost torturous path to happily ever after for Marienne and Daniel--two honorable, faithful people with whom the reader becomes friends. It’s a frustrating story, but a good frustrating, because they are so obviously right for each other, and so obviously wrong for their spouses. The reader is dying for Marienne and Daniel to see what we see all along. The attraction is there, the emotional connection is there, and we ache for them to acknowledge it.

If you like sweet romances, stories where you root for the couple to get together and find anticipation is delicious, you’ll like Meant To Be.

About the author:
Karen Stivali is a prolific writer, compulsive baker and chocoholic with a penchant for books, movies and fictional British men. When she’s not writing, she can be found cooking extravagant meals and serving them to family and friends. Prior to deciding to write full time Karen worked as a hand drawn animator, a clinical therapist, and held various food-related jobs ranging from waitress to specialty cake maker. Planning elaborate parties and fundraisers takes up what’s left of her time and sanity.

Karen has always been fascinated by the way people relate to one another so she favors books and movies that feature richly detailed characters and their relationships. In her own writing she likes to explore the dynamics between characters and has a tendency to craft romantic love stories filled with sarcasm and sexy details. 

Karen has published three erotic romances with Ellora’s Cave: Marry Me (June 2012), Long-Distance Lovers (co-written with Karen Booth, March 2012) and Always You (Passionate Plume First Place Novella Winner, RWA 2012).

Karen’s first full-length novel, Meant To Be, released from Turquoise Morning Press on August 26, 2012. Its sequel, Holding On, released on November 26, 2012. A prequel to these novels, the short story All I Need, appears in the Foreign Affairs Anthology (Turquoise Morning Press, August 2012).

Coming in 2013 Karen will have several contemporary romances releasing from Samhain Publishing and Turquoise Morning Press. The first of these, Then, Again will release from Samhain on May 23, 2013.

Buy the book:
Amazon author page
Amazon Meant To Be
Romance Ebooks 
Barnes & Noble

Turquoise Morning Press

It was a pleasure to have Karen here on her CLP blog tour. Click for more links and to read an interview with Karen, to read and excerpt of Meant To Be, and to read Karen's guest post.