Monday, February 3, 2014

ARC Review: Stripped by Jasinda Wilder

Title: Stripped
Author: Jasinda Wilder
Publication date: August 16th 2013
Source: Received from author
Buy the book: Amazon / Barnes and Noble

So how did I get myself into this situation, you ask? Simple: desperation. When you're faced with being homeless and hungry or taking off your clothes for money, the choice is easier than you'd imagine. That doesn't make it easy, though. Oh no. I hate it, in fact. There's nothing I'd like more than to quit and never go into another bar again, never hear the techno beat pulsing in my ears again, never feel the lecherous gazes of horny men again.

Then, one day, I meet a man. He's in my club, front and center. He watches me do my routine, and his gaze is full of hunger. Not the kind of desire I'm used to though. It's something different. Something hotter, deeper, and more possessive. I know who he is; of course I do. Everyone knows who Dawson Kellor is. He's People Magazine's Sexiest Man alive. He's the hottest actor in Hollywood. He's the man hand-picked for the role of Rhett Butler in the long-awaited remake of Gone With the Wind. 

He's the kind of man who can have any woman in the entire world with a mere crook of his finger. So what's he doing looking at me like he has to have me? And how do I resist him when he looks at me with those intoxicating, changeable, quicksilver eyes? 

I'm a virgin, and he's an American icon of male sexuality. I'm a stripper, and he's a man used to getting anything and everything he wants. And he wants me. I know I should say no, I know he's the worst kind of player…but what my mind knows, my body and my heart may not.

And then things get complicated.

(Image and summary taken from Goodreads.)


Stripped was one of my most anticipated reads of 2013 and to this day, I still do not know if I loved it or not. But one thing I am sure of is that this book really took me by surprise because I did not expect it to be so intense, I taught that it would be a light and fun read but while it was quick and the plot went smoothly, the mood of the story really caught me off guard.

I still do not really know how I feel about Grey. (Short backstory about her: lived in a small town, very religious and stricf father, mother helped her sneak off to dance, mother passes away and she leaves her father to study college in California, is estranged from previously mentioned father. That is all you need to know about Grey's "former life". I actually felt that Jasinda Wilder spent a bit too much time describing Grey's past and while I appreciate her attention to detail, it made things get a bit draggy.) While she may have been an inspiring woman, being able to support herself to go through college, and her show of independence raised my respect for her, there were times when her naivity kind of overshadowed her maturity (and do not give me the "she was a sheltered for most of her life" excuse because it is not a valid one, trust me). She is a very confusing character even as the story progressed, her constant "I want you but I can't have you" feelings/actions towards Dawson were kind of repetitive and got kind of irritating because she just kept going on and on about it. But when she finally gave in? I sent a HALLELUJAH to Heaven because finally we were getting somewhere! It was at the latter part of the book that you really saw Grey mature the most, she became more confident and that lightened the story's slightly dark mood. I like Grey but I do not particularly love her.

Throughout that story, you can really see the difference between Dawson and Grey as characters, not because of social standing or anything physical but it was the way they were fleshed out. Yes, there were parts I wanted to hurt Dawson but not too badly because he was a really great guy and I could see that he genuinely cared for Grey (even knowing that she was a stripper). I felt really bad for him because he kept getting hurt and pushed back due to Grey's stubbornness towards accepting her feelings and that made me want to comfort him, really. I loved the little ways he took care of her, doing simple but also extravagant things and I loved it when he brought out her not-so innocent side because that was the only time I saw something exciting in Grey's character. I absolutely adored Dawson and not because he is super hot, it is because he is such a great guy and a very well-written one at that.

There were parts that made me feel really bad for Grey and those were the moments when I realized how serious this book actually is. (And also very sexy.) The stripper aspect was what drew me to this book and Jasinda Wilder got plus points for being able to write that so well, showing us how some strippers may feel while they are performing and entertaining people. I was able to catch a glimpse of that life and seeing those things happen in the book broke my heart. (See? I told you the book is intense.)

This is honestly my first foray with Jasinda Wilder and while I did not get what I was expecting, I am sure that her other books carry the appropriate mood for the settings. I will certainly be reading her other books in the near future.


1 comment:

  1. I agree with your review. I didn't understand Grey. She flip flopped and the crying! oh the crying. It was a bit too much for me.