Format: eBook (mobi)
Published: Sepember 22, 2012
Author: Pepper Pace
Genre: Contemporary Interracial Romance
Sex: Strong Sexual Content
Available: Amazon / BN / ARe
I liked the story initially and as it progressed, I was kinda here and there. There were parts that were so very predictable and sorry to say this....but corny. I also felt like things were thrown in to prolong the story.
Christopher is a marine who works in the sub-basement of the federal building Ashleigh works in. He and some other dudes work there keeping the building secure when they are on their downtime. Christopher goes by the name Beast and it's not just because of his face. Christopher is a big guy..like huge, he also has a bilateral cleft palate. And because his family was dirt ass poor, they couldn't afford to fix it when he was growing up. AND due to the state taking over and basically having shoddy doctors try to fix his face, they only made it worse. So now Christopher has scars as well and his face is pretty much deformed. It makes him look scary, but this also makes Chris shy and very self-conscious around people. He doesn't go out much and when he does, it's only to his family's home and a local karaoke bar where he sings.
Ashleigh is a big girl, but she's also shallow. She only wants good looking men on her arm. She's self-conscious about her weight, but felt that as long as she has a big strong man by her side who is drop dead gorgeous, it makes her look good. When she learns that her current beau suddenly gets married to another woman it sends her into a downward spiral of depression, but it also makes her realize that she needs to change and not just with her body, but who she is as a person. This is how she meets Christopher. Ashleigh decides to join the gym that's in the basement of the building she works in. On her first day, she takes in Christopher running on the treadmill. She loves the look of his body, but when she catches a look at his face one day when he turns around. She's at first shocked and scared, but instantly apologizes for her rudeness and they become fast friends after Christopher helps her out with her workout after she passes out from working out the wrong way.
I liked the twist Ms. Pace put on the whole beauty and beast theme. But I also felt the story was a little all over the place. There was way too much going on here and it felt at times that everything was jumbled together. You would be reading one person's thoughts and then another persons thoughts just jumped right at you. There was no separation...no time to breath after taking in someone else's issue before something new was thrown at you. I didn't like that at all.
The romance itself just happened too quickly, I mean like super quick and this is a full length tale. I didn't feel like I got enough time to feel the relationship develop between these two. I also felt like the relationship between Chris and Ashleigh was juvenile. Their mannerisms and the things they would say to one another just didn't strike me as very adultish.
Ms. Pace touched on a variety of things in Beast...body issues, weight, beauty and a host of other things, but as I mentioned there was no cohesiveness and that was my main issue. I wanted more of a put together story and this I felt was rushed. I believe Ms. Pace was trying to give us a message in the book, a message of accepting ones self despite your many flaws...but that message got lost in all of the extra stuff.