Series: Contours of the Heart #4
Published by Tammara Webber on December 17th 2017
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Courage means rising up to defend your beliefs...or daring to question them.
Erin McIntyre was captivating, but forbidden. His professional subordinate. The embodiment of unearned privilege. The daughter of his sworn enemy
Isaac Maat was impossible to read. Smart, ambitious, and emotionally detached. Hotter than anyone's boss should ever be and definitely hiding something...
He told himself that getting to know her would help him take down her father. She told herself that getting under his skin would distract her wrecked heart from its misery.
Neither predicted their private war would lead to an intimate battle in which the victor would be the first one to SURRENDER.
It has been a long, long time since I’ve read a Tammara Webber book and coming back to one is a reminder of ‘Contours of the Heart’ as one of the first few books that actually made me aware of the then-emerging New Adult (sub)genre that had suddenly scored big hits with so many people.
As the rocky relationship between Isaac Maat and Erin McIntyre emerges in the first few chapters however, what I’d evidently also forgotten is Webber’s seductively poetic and perceptive writing of this pairing—particularly so for a NA story—just as her portrayal of her characters are realistic, quite multifaceted and believable, with the undertones of racial bias that sets up the conflict of the story years before Isaac and Erin are even on the scene.
These alone makes ‘Brave’ easy to go through, as Webber unravels the heroine, strips her bare, then puts her in front of the reader like a bold testament to the flawed (and young) heroine…complete with broken dreams, scorching fantasies, colossal fuck-ups and everything else in between. With only Erin’s POV available to us though, it is more difficult to figure out who Isaac really is, and my own inference in this case, coming through the filter of Erin’s own perceptions, doesn’t peel back that much. Consequently, Isaac remains relatively shrouded in mystery (and very alluringly sexy) but as unreadable and unattainable as Erin makes him out to be.
I did find myself somewhat bored for the first half—the slow burn also translates into slow pacing—as Erin and Isaac take a while to warm up to each other, then flatten out until the climax near the end and a hurried resolution that’s unsatisfactory because of its swiftness and abruptness. The romance at some points, seems to flicker out, only to return when Erin/Isaac sort out the fallout from the big reveal and this, coupled with the rushed (and only) sex scene at the end, just left me needing a lot more than a HFN conclusion.