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Kate Bond

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Entwined with You (Crossfire Trilogy Series #3)

Entwined with You - Sylvia Day 3.5 starsOK, I genuinely like this series. [b:Bared to You|13572249|Bared to You (Crossfire, #1)|Sylvia Day|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1362527033s/13572249.jpg|18973111] was funny, sexy, and smart, and was a welcome example of of how a [b:Fifty Shades of Grey|10818853|Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, #1)|E.L. James|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1368413518s/10818853.jpg|15732562]-style story could really work if written well with actual stakes and stuff. Sylvia Day is a really canny author, and her novels always tend to stand out as exceptional within the genre.But the second book in the series was pretty much garbage. It was embarrassing. And there wasn't even any sexy sex stuff to make up for the terrible story! As a side note, I don't think you can get away with skipping the second book in the series here. Just FYI. You have to toil through, George R. R. Martin-style, or Entwined with You will make--and I'm neither kidding nor stupid here--not a lick of goddamn sense. For the first few chapters of this, the third book in what was supposed to be a trilogy (again with the George R. R. Martin similarities) but now appears to be a series of FIVE books, I was seriously concerned. Because the beginning is absolutely terrible. It is just these two people having weird, embarrassing sex (Day frequently describes their kissing as "licking into each other's mouths," and that shit seriously grossed me out) and talking about how perfect they are together, but how they have to stay apart because Gideon killed the stepbrother who repeatedly raped Eva and then threatened to go to the press with photos/maybe rape her again (I know), and it is a slog, man. And there are several pages of Day explaining how Gideon's insane, controlling behavior in the previous books makes sense in hindsight because of the stuff with the stepbrother threatening to hurt Eva, and it started to make me angry, because that's what happens to a large percentage of women in abusive relationships. They react rationally to insane behavior on the part of their terrible partners, and it's all explained away as over-protectiveness. Please, please, please stop putting this shit in romance novels. Romanticizing this behavior is irresponsible and lazy.ALL THAT ASIDE, push through, because on the other side--just past, "Honestly, Gideon Cross was designed to fuck a woman right out of her mind--" shit gets pretty good. It becomes a book about two people who were once petty and jealous and childish, but who have grown into...well, their relationship feels grown-up now. Gideon and Eva feel like they're on the same page. And they both agree that the way he used to treat women was disgusting and immature.And it's A LOT of fun, guys. I was going through the notes I took on my Kindle before I wrote this review, and there were at least five places where I wrote, "Ok. This is GENUINELY funny." Because I was surprised. Because I'm a snobby intellectual type. I wanted to share all the jokes I thought were funny, but taken out of context they are dumb and it seems like I might be having a stroke or something.There are a few nods to/jokes about other popular romance novels--like when Gideon and Eva are dancing to a song and she asks him what it is and he says, "No clue," or when Eva's rock star ex mentions the name of the bar where they first met and hooked up, and it's the same as the bar where the rock star couple in [b:Thoughtless|13517535|Thoughtless (Thoughtless, #1)|S.C. Stephens|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1331254339s/13517535.jpg|14321512] spend a lot of time--and I love romance novels, so that was fun for me.Eva does not have as many female friends as I'd like, and everyone who really impacts her life in a positive way is male, but there are two awesome gay men who feature prominently (one is Eva's crazy roommate/best friend, and the other is her really cool boss, who is in a serious relationship), so that's something, progress-wise. Another thing I like, kind of along these lines, is that while Gideon is "one of the 25 richest men in the world" or whatever, Eva isn't poor. She has ten million dollars in the bank. So it's not one of those dumb Cinderella-y things.Oh! Which reminds me! Sylvia Day writes rich people in a way that feels like she has actually met a rich person in her life. She is familiar with what crazy brands they consume casually and with how uncomfortable their money can make their less-well-off friends. She also knows a lot of the appropriate lingo to make Eva's job in advertising seem legit--even if her work hours are ridiculous (she meets people for drinks after work at 5:00, and the building is nearly empty and Gideon's assistant has gone home by 6:30).I only really have two complaints here. The first is that Day has too many attractive, stylish men wearing cargo pants/shorts as though this is a thing that is attractive after 1998. The other is that she does not make her characters brush their teeth before making out when they wake up. It's kind of yucky. Brush your teeth. Your mouth smells bad.Trigger warning: This is tough. If you made it through the first two books, you'll be fine. Both Eva and Gideon are victims of sexual abuse as children, and it might be pretty tough to read about if it coincides with your experiences, but we don't really learn anything new about that aspect of things here.