Review: Intrusion (Under the Skin #1) by Charlotte Stein

I believed I would never be able to trust any man again. That kindness was only for fools and would lead me down that same terrible path into darkness. I thought so with every fiber of my being-and then I met Noah Gideon Grant.

Everyone says he’s dangerous. He never comes out of his house-a place that looks like it could be featured in Serial Killers Monthly. But the thing is … I think something happened to him too. I know the chemistry between us isn’t just in my head. I know he feels it, but he’s holding back. The pleasure he gives me is unreal-if only I could give something in return. If only he would let me in. I think I can make him feel something good. And for the first time in forever, I want to.

He’s made a labyrinth of himself. Now all I need to do is dare to find my way through.

This one is a strange one for me to review. I honestly didn’t really get the plot. Was there a plot?
Noah is a recluse. He’s a brilliant profiler that got a little too close on a case in which he was left severely emotionally damaged. He’s withdrawn. Keeps to himself and others.
Beth is a survivor of her own terrifying ordeal. She has kept to herself as well and lives a monotonous life because of it. She and Noah have similarities that can connect them in that sense. They can understand each other.
This story is told in first person, which is completely fine when told well. However, there was way too much inner monologue for me. Too much telling and not enough showing. A lot of inner ramblings. After the second or third-ish encounter they just fall into a relationship. One moment she’s sitting at his table eating pie, and in the next, time has passed and she’s practically moved in. We are told this.
Then, the last chapter came out of nowhere to me. Certain players from their past weren’t quite done with them. Huh? Not once did I get a sense that either one of them were still in danger from their encounters. Yet, in the final chapter their lives were on the line. I was a bit lost and flipped back a few pages thinking I missed something. Nope. Nothing was set up to alert us to imposing danger.
Overall, this story missed the connection for me. Show me the relationship evolve. Show me the fear or worry that their lives weren’t safe. Show not just tell a story.
Unfortunately, this is a 2 star read for me.

Review: Sheltered by Charlotte Stein

This review isn’t going to be pretty… you’ve been warned.

I just couldn’t get into this book for the life of me. The characters felt one dimensional and the story lacked… well… a storyline. I don’t mind sex in my romance novels, as long as I don’t feel like it’s either a constant filler, or on every turn of the page. Unfortunately for me, this book just had entirely way too much of it.

Van and Evie were just… well… awkward. It’s really the best and most accurate description I have for these two characters. I’m all about sweet and innocent heroines- they’re my favorite type to read about. But Evie… her naivety was to the extreme. The way she referenced Van’s… *cough* …certain body parts as a “thing” or a “bowling ball between his legs”…yeah, that just didn’t work for me. In fact, a lot of things she said were really awkward and just freaking weird. For example:

“Do you have any other tattoos I can’t usually see?” A sound came out of him— half-amused, half-not— and he turned his face away. Put a hand up to his mouth, and rubbed over the scratch of stubble there. “Yeah, but you’re not seeing them.” “…Are they in rude places?”

Rude places?

Is this a joke? Who says that! I was embarrassed for her, just by reading her conversations with Van. I can’t even count the number of times I zoned out while reading this book. I was reading paragraph after paragraph, yet not comprehending what it was I was reading, and not caring enough to even go back and try to grasp an understanding of what it was I had just read. The novel just spent entirely way too much time in Evie’s thoughts, taking away from the… well… lack of story.

I honestly have nothing good to say about this novel. If reading pages and pages of endless make-out sessions, step-by-step instructions on how to deflower a virgin, and listening to her vulgar thoughts in the process of it all, is your type of read… then this is the book for you. Otherwise, I would stay as far away from this novel as possible- you’d be doing yourself a favor.