Top critical review
4 people found this helpful
on 16 July 2013
Man, I was really looking forward to reading this book. I even pre-ordered it for my Kindle PC (a first for me.) And then I read it and was disappointed. This book swayed around 1.5 stars but picked up slightly towards the end.
Armentrout's books are hit-and-miss for me. I like the Lux series (they're not perfect but they're enjoyable), I really didn't like Covenant (and didn't read the others in that series), I did like her New Adult book, Wait For You, and her adult books under the name of J Lynn, the Gamble Brother series, were okay. And 'Obsession' didn't really do it for me.
The problem with Obsession is that it's lacklustre in quality. I didn't feel connected to the characters at all. The female protagonist is Serena, who watched her best friend be killed by a Luxen, and finds herself under the protection of the Department of Defense, and then somehow under the watch of the Arum, Hunter. Serena was supposed to be sassy, and yet I never bought that she was. She never really seemed to have much of a backbone, accepted her situation far too quickly, and never had any defining qualities. Another problem was that instead of trying to avenge her best friend's death (or find out more), she spends the majority of the book in a constant state of arousal instead (okay, she tries for about five seconds.)Also, a personal gripe: references keep being made of Serena being short at 5 and a half feet. 5 and a half feet is 5"6 (unless she means 5" and a half inch?) and that is definitely not short(!!!) As someone who actually is short (5"1), I hate it when people moan about how short they are when they're actually average height or higher...!
Hunter is supposed to be the 'bad boy, sexy' type, but there were times when I disliked him. He does the whole 'Stay away from me!" vent, before then making some sort of pass/sexual towards Serena, giving more mixed signals than Edward Cullen. In fact the trouble with this book was that it was too Twilight for me. Hunter may be an alien, but the whole vacillating between wanting to kiss/have sex with Serena and wanting to eat her life force (yes) bears all the traits of a vampire in disguise. Another thing I disliked (and this is just a personal thing) is that Hunter is ruthless and quite violent. Where as someone like Daemon (from the Lux series) killed in self-defence, Hunter will kill characters with no second thought, and I found that uncomfortable.
I also spent a lot of time comparing both characters to Katy (also from Lux) and Damon, and it seemed to me that both were water-downed versions of their predecessors. Serena tries to be feisty like Katy, but never really gets there, and Hunter is like an older version of Daemon, but embodies his worst qualities (doing that whole hot-and-cold thing that Daemon was conveying a la Edward in book one). Also, Hunter like to call him/others a vagina, in the context of them being a wimp or weak ~like a vagina apparently~, which was problematic to me and a definite WTF moment. Armentrout, I thought you knew better than this!
The story... well, there wasn't much of a story. Obviously this story is mostly about sex, and whatever plot there was is a thinly disguised as one. Everything that happens is predictable, and it's one of those books that has all the cliches. There's not much development between Serena and Hunter. There's instant attraction, there's not even any build up. They're practically shagging soon after, which is fine (this is an erotica after all), but I like it when there's more build up. (The sex scenes themselves were hot in parts, though felt generic in others.)
So yes, some bits I disliked a lot and I feel that the writing and quality could be improved. Part of me wonders whether Armentrout having so many books out this year (with Wait For You, Obsession, Covenant #4 and 5, Lux #4, Frigid, Unchained, and Nephilium Rising either out or coming out) makes the quality suffer a bit? (And whoa, I definitely admire her for being able to have that many books out in a year!) I'm not sure whether I will read the second one (view spoiler)but hopefully it will be better.