Rare and Beautiful Things
Release date: October 4th 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, LGBTQ
Add to TBR: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon UK | Amazon US
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The rarest prize might be buried deep … or hiding in plain sight.Amber Greyell knows a lot about jaguars. A virgin at 32, the willowy, redheaded PhD finds romance far more baffling. So when she meets gorgeous, athletic shipwreck diver Nikki Sharpe off the coast of Belize, her curiosity is mixed with a strong dose of caution.Nikki can’t help being intrigued by Amber’s innocence and intellect. When the pair discover a long-lost journal preserved in a sunken ship, the unexpected story in its pages sets them on their own journey toward intimacy.But Amber doesn’t want to get her heart broken by a woman who won’t be around for long. Can Nikki overcome Amber’s doubts and show her there’s more than one kind of hidden treasure?
The Faerie Queen’s review
I must be the blackest of black sheep with this book, as almost all of the reviews on Goodreads are 4 or 5 stars. Everyone raves about the characters and how sweet the romance is. Me? I think this gif sums it up.
Three years ago, Nikki and Amber met on a boat, felt an initial attraction, and then quickly parted ways because Amber got freaked out by another woman paying Nikki attention. Skip to present-day, and Amber’s in Belize studying jaguars when, lo and behold, Nikki shows up with her dive team. Nikki doesn’t hide that she wants to get all up in Amber’s business, and Amber is awkward and scientific about it all, not letting it happen despite acknowledging that she is experiencing arousal.
This was not sexy. I get it; Amber is a virgin scientist, but that doesn’t mean she needs to be a robot. Oh, but she must be awakened, and then she’ll be a wild animal. Of course. Neither character had depth. Amber was just a scientist, so she naturally had to be awkward. Nikki was a diver, so her athleticism naturally came with assertiveness and sex appeal. Of course. There was the teensiest bit of chemistry, but it was mostly meh, and what was there was ruined by the cheesy naming of the clit as “pearl”. Ugh. (Another term they kept repeating? “Apex predator”. I get it, jaguars are apex predators. Just call them jaguars instead of trying to push home that the one character is a scientist.)
The story. Was there meant to be substance to that plot? Was I supposed to feel excited or enthralled? At most, I felt some mild curiosity about the contents of the journal, but I actually guessed what it would be from the blurb, to be honest. And wow, were the journal entries stilted.
There wasn’t any world building, either. As readers, we must put together what we can based on the stereotypical photos you might find of rainforests and beaches and waterfalls. I got no sense of the spaces, no ambiance, when we entered any of the buildings, or even on the beach. How far were things from each other? What was the weather like? Were there any background noises? Nothing.
It was all so flat. The dialogue, the personalities, the story, the setting, the romance. I’m not sure what kept me reading it other than that it was relatively short and that I was hoping it would get better. I don’t know. Maybe I’m missing something, but there are much better lesbian romances out there.
I would recommend this book to…
…no one… Unless you’re desperate for lesbian romance…