I have to say that Patricia Grasso has always been one of my favorite authors. I first discovered her romance novels years ago and have scavenged the whole area to find all her books. (I highly recommend the Devereux family series. Definitely five stars on all of them). Grasso has the ability to draw the reader into every book she writes. It feels that you are living during the era and are there with each of the characters when they are interacting. It is truely a great author who can make you laugh at one moment and cry the next. So, when I heard her latest book, To Tempt an Angel, was available, I, of course, ran right out and bought it. And after reading it, I wish I hadn't spent the money.
Either it was bad editing by the publisher or just plain bad writing, To Tempt An Angel was completely out of the usual style that I expect from Grasso. It is boring and predictable. The story is about a heroine, Angelica Douglas, who is obsessed with getting revenge for her fathers ruin. Her father was financially ruin by the noble families and eventually died of alcoholism. Her hero, Robert Campbell, comes to her rescue. Angelica and Robert teamed up to gain back the Douglas family fortune stolen by several prominent families...blah, blah, blah. And that is pretty much it... a "recipe" romance novel.
Patricia Grasso has the ability to take the most basic of story lines and create something extraordinary. So what happened???
Grasso never really develops her characters. The characters have no personal growth. There is no conflict or sexual tension between the characters. For example, in several situations Angelica gets in huge fights with Robert...she slaps him, then in the next paragraph everything is hunky dory. Even when she finds out that Robert slept around with the "evil woman", she is perfectly fine with it. The reader will begin with a paragraph hoping that there will be some new developement, but is left with an open end. There were so many open endings that the book never went anywhere. The question "why?" was never answered. No explanation to why the these "evil families" targeted the Douglas family, and, most importantly, why Angelica and Douglas fell in love. And the humor was nonexistant. If there was any, it consisted of a talking bird (not necessary) and a little girls problem with beans and farting.
In short, a complete disappointment. Sigh. Maybe her next novel will be better. Of course, I have to wait another year, but I think I can handle it. In the meantime, if you're bored, try reading Julie Garwood (no matter how many times you read her books you never get bored), Teresa Medeiros, Penelope Williamson, Mary Gillgannon, Barbara Dawson Smith, or...so many good ones so little time.