Alison Kent – “Infatuation”

11 Jan

GENRE: Romance / Contemporary
PUBLISHED: Harlequin Blaze, 2006

The back blurb:
” ‘Hell on wheels … in bed’ someone had written on Rennie Bergen’s business card. Now Rennie’s card rested with many other men’s in the glass ‘booty’ – all up for grabs by the female dating pool in Milla Page’s office building.
Three dates! That”s all Milla needed to write a sexy, juicy story on San Francisco hot spots for her online column. Was it fate she drew Rennie’s card?
The two of them had a history. Infatuation, wild sex, sneaking around – followed by a painful explosive breakup. But Milla was still hot for him six years later … And it was clear Rennie felt the same. Could they have a shot at rewriting history?”

A story about ex-lovers reunited? Yup, interested.

A story about ex-lovers reunited by Alison Kent? Yup, definitely interested because it’s a good opportunity to finally read something by Alison Kent.

So Infatuation is the first novel by Alison Kent I read.

As I expected, I liked her voice and her way to write. When there’s another story with a premise I like, like this ex-lover thing, I’m sure I’ll think about reading it.

Now what about Infatuation?

In this novel, you get three love stories: Milla’s and Rennie’s past and present and a secondary romance between two of Rennie’s employees. The three dates Milla needs to write her articles provide the framework for the story. As Milla and Rennie meet for these dates, they work their way through their past, which is told in flashbacks, and work on their present and possible future relationship.

And here’s where my problem with this novel rests. Leaving aside that I thought Milla’s behaviour in the present not exactly mature, I had trouble getting why she did what she did (the sneaking around part) in the past. It’s not that there are no answers to this question. It’s rather that, considering what Milla did (and he, too) and how long this went on, I thought them not enough. They’re more like hints for Milla’s behaviour. What I got from them as an explication just didn’t add up for me and made me view Milla as rather selfish. This might be the intention because she was young. But letting her take her time in the present with her apology for her past behaviour seems to suggest that she didn’t grow up much. Their past is kind of glossed over even at the end, after Milla and Rennie talked about what happened at their breakup.

Or maybe it’s just that this apology had to be kept back because otherwise the story would’ve been over. It’s just so obvious that Milla and Rennie are right for each other and belong together, in the past and in the present. Which made me question again and again why Milla did what she did in the past, because I thought at least at the beginning of her involvement with Rennie there was time to act differently for her.

Which brings me to the second romance. I liked it and it brings a nice juxtaposition of different kinds of families into play. But given my feeling that some small parts of Milla’s and Rennie’s history were missing, although each scene between them taken separately works, the second romance felt like an unnecessary distraction.

All in all: Milla and Rennie = good and hot together. It’s just that the parts didn’t add up and make a real whole for me (which kept it from getting 4 / 5).

Would I recommend this novel? Probably yes.

Would I read this novel again? Maybe.

Grade: 3,5 / 5


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