I know I promised shorter posts, but I had a hard time cutting this one down.
The story starts with Kira—your typical high school girl—and her best friend Lydia, then continues to grow in scope all the way through to the end.
As a debut novel, Christine delivers a good story. She has strong scenes and does an excellent job evoking emotion. For me, the story slowed down in the middle, but it picked up at the end in a big way. Christine writes strong, complex characters with internal motivations and feelings.
If you're not into indie published books because of the low quality, you don't have to worry about this one. The whole book from cover, to layout, to editing was clean and very professional.
(Warning: A few minor spoilers ahead.)
There was one aspect of the story that bothered me so much, I almost didn't write this review. Octavion, the male lead in the story, has several weaknesses. One of them is physical aggression. This is not new to the YA Paranormal genre, but in this story it crossed the line to physical abuse.
I've known several women who have lived through abuse, and I guess that makes me especially sensitive. It is devastating. The women I know still feel its effects many, many years later.
I'm not telling you these things to scare you away from this book, but I need to tell you a few more things.
During the story Octavion shoves Kira several times, slams her against a tree, chokes her, holds her bodily against a car while she tries to escape, drugs her, kidnaps her, takes her to a place he knows is dangerous and she ends up breaking her arm, etc. After each of these episodes, he is extremely apologetic and even ashamed. Which is pretty typical in an abusive relationship.
With all this in mind, I was surprised to read the following reviews:
"Octavion . . . gives opportunities for swooning if you're the swooning type." - Mere Motherhood
"Believe me, Octavion will make you swoon." - Writing 4 Me
"Favorite moments involve a waterfall and a shirtless hottie named Octavian, . . . and some great kissing scenes that leave Kira—the main character—and the reader breathless." - Randomish
"Octavion . . . is a total hottie." - Rachelle's Writing Spot
"Octavion from Bound is one of my favorite new heroes, and I have to say, I'm a happily married woman, but he did make my heart go pitty-pat at least a couple of times." - Tristi Pinkston
"Octavian is a hot bundle of man that I'd love to meet one day." - Cindy M. Hogan
Then I realized something. Christine got it right.
There is something in the psyche of a woman that is drawn to the dangerous man. Just like there is something in the male psyche drawn to the mean girl. It's not an admirable part of us, but it's there. And Christine captured it in her story.
The real world is not a perfect place, and neither is Bound. I know Octavion can find redemption someday, but I hope it's with someone else and after he spends a couple years in prison because Kira deserves so much better.
It's not often that a fiction story (and a YA Paranormal at that) makes me think about a topic this deeply. I've wrestled my thoughts and emotions for weeks. I feel I have a better understanding why women stay in these dangerous relationships. So, I encourage you to go out and read the book, then let me know what you think in the comments.