Sorry the blog has been a bit quiet. I've been shopping a lot LOL. We don't have Black Friday in Canada, so some of the biggest sales happen to be on the day after Christmas - Boxing Day! Actually, did you know that Boxing Day is a stat holiday? LOL. Anyway, aside from shopping, I've also been reading. I'm only 2 books away from achieving my reading goal this year! With 4 days to go, I'm crossing my fingers I'll make it :) Finally, I'm trying to complete my Monthly Reads posts... I have October, November and December to do ^_^; Sigh, how did that happen? I've started October... but I still have a long road to go. I think the trick is really to keep it short which you know, it's hard for me ^_^;
Anyway, I didn't want my blog to be too empty, so here is my review for Slow Ride by Erin McCarthy which initially was supposed to be part of the October Monthly Reads post... but I realized it was detailed enough to be a full review on its own. See what I mean by having difficulty keeping it short? ^_^; Okay, it is shorter than my usual reviews... but still, for a Monthly Post that can contain 10 reviews? Yeah, not short enough...
Slow Ride by Erin McCarthy
published by Berkley in October 2011
As a tribute to her late journalist father, Tuesday Jones is planning a career benefit, auctioning off racing memorabilia and meet-and-greets with drivers. Ex-racing star Diesel Lange has had his own brush with death, and is determined not to waste another minute of his life- especially when he meets Tuesday. He wants nothing more than to shift their romance into high gear, but he knows she's still grieving. Can Diesel do the one thing he could never do on the track and take it slow?Genre: Contemporary romance, sport romance
Series: Fast-Track series, Book #5
The Story: Tuesday Jones is a reporter and has a very popular blog about NASCAR - what happens on and off the tracks. She has recently lost her father who was also a sport reporter and is dealing with her grief. During her best friend's wedding, she runs into Daniel "Diesel" Lange whom she previously met at her father's funerals. Diesel used to be a NASCAR driver till he got in an accident and almost lost his life. Now, with a busted knee, he stays connected to the racing world by restoring vintage race cars.
Tuesday and Diesel are attracted to each other and it doesn't take long for them to act on this attraction. However, they both brings a lot of baggage to the relationship. Can they deal with their issues and turn this fling into something more?
My Opinion: The last book of this series that I read prior to Slow Ride was Hot Finish and I was a bit disappointed because I was expecting more from the story between Ryder and Suzanne. Then I skipped over The Chase, because I didn't like the premise of a female driver. However, I was really looking forward to Slow Ride because of the blurb... but once again, I was disappointed.
The biggest problem I had with Slow Ride was that nothing much happened ^_^; Basically, Tuesday and Diesel meet, start dating and have sex. Sure, the sex was hot, but it was not enough to carry the storyline. In fact, given the amount of sex and the thickness of the book (304 pages), Slow Ride actually read more like an erotica romance than a contemporary romance. Another issue was the lack of development of the characters and the relationship. I thought that Diesel and Tuesday didn't really get to know each other throughout the book and as a result, it gave rise to a weak conflict and prematured HEA ending. For example, Tuesday reproached Diesel for not opening himself, not discussing his accident with her. I thought that was ridiculous. They have only known each other a month, barely spoke about themselves and she wants him to talk about the biggest life-changing event in his life? Also, based on Tuesday's behavior, I have to say, she hadn't really earned Diesel's trust at that point.
Finally, my last issue with this book was Tuesday. I really didn't like her character. She got on my nerve and rubbed me the wrong way. Also, I thought her behavior towards Diesel was very disrespectful - the time he came to pick up for the date and she was drunk and the whole article fiasco. While I didn't like Tuesday's problems with alcohol, I thought it was very realistic and could have made the book really interesting. Unfortunately, Ms McCarthy missed that opportunity :(
What saved this book for was the hero, Diesel. I thought he was a great guy and really liked his personality. I liked that he was the one who wanted a relationship. I liked that he wasn't bitter about how his career ended and was content with life. Also, he did try to help out Tuesday with her problems... and I don't think him not wanting to speak about his accident was a real conflict. All in all, Tuesday was really lucky in my opinion.
In my opinion, Slow Ride had potential, but it wasn't developed enough to fulfill it. In the end, I felt the relationship was rushed and as a result, the HEA ending was not believable. I think it'd have been much better if the book had ended on the H/H giving each other another chance for a relationship than with Diesel proposing.
My Grade: C-. Diesel is the reason why the grade is in the C-range, otherwise, I'd probably have given Slow Ride a D. At this point, I'm not sure if I'm going to continue with this series...