This is my first book review and I hope you find it useful or at least, entertaining ! 😉
Title: The Collector
Author: Nora Roberts
I completed reading this on Saturday like I promised I would, so the story is still fresh in my mind. I thought I wouldn’t get to finish it as it was very late in the night but I did. For that, I am proud!
When professional house-sitter Lila Emerson witnesses a murder/suicide from her current apartment-sitting job, life as she knows it takes a dramatic turn. Suddenly, the woman with no permanent ties finds herself almost wishing for one. . . .
Artist Ashton Archer knows his brother isn’t capable of violence—against himself or others. He recruits Lila, the only eyewitness, to help him uncover what happened. Ash longs to paint her as intensely as he hungers to touch her. But their investigation draws them into a rarified circle where priceless antiques are bought, sold, gambled away, and stolen, where what you possess is who you are, and where what you desire becomes a deadly obsession. . . .
Here is the summary (I’ll try not to give away the ending): Though there are four characters that played a significant role in the story, the story mainly revolved around only two of them (Lila Emerson and Ashton Archer). Lila Emerson is a house-sitter (yeah, much like a baby-sitter but more adventurous) and a writer (YAY for her!). She loves to explore new places and always curious to know more about people and their lives. This habit of hers made her a witness of two murders (a boy and a girl). On a good note, it also made her meet a person that she falls in love with very soon but takes her a long time to figure it out. That person is Ashton Archer, who is apparently a prolific and mind blowing artist. He happens to be the brother of the boy who got murdered for reasons…read the book please. I will tell you this though: valuable artifacts are in play. Lila and Ashton get together to solve the mystery behind these two murders, while falling in love with each other.
My opinion: I am gonna be honest with you all, I was disappointed on this one. As I am a very big fan of Nora Roberts, I was looking forward to reading it but unfortunately, it was not the way I expected it would be. It was confusing a little especially in the middle of the story, where she jumps into explaining the history behind the artifacts. The story and the setting weren’t structured like her other novels. First of all, I did not like the hero (Ashton) because he was way too controlling of people and situations alike. That was not needed. He felt the need that he had to be in control of everything as it was his habit at home because his father wasn’t there when he was needed. Ashton kept supporting his awareness of woman’s needs with stating that he had a big family, mostly consisting of ladies. In my opinion, that does not make him a reliable judge when it comes to dealing with woman and her needs. Not every woman is alike. The book’s secondary focus on was Lila in changing her way of thinking. In the beginning, she was portrayed as a strong person who was well equipped in taking care of herself. She was reluctant on holding on to others for support as a result of her childhood experiences. As the story gradually progressed, the readers and herself took note of her transformation from a strong person to more of a submissive kind. Ashton’s controlling nature was rather cute at fist but then it just got a bit annoying. Though he was being protective of his, it was way too much to tolerate. There was nothing that had to be fixed about Lila, she was perfect the way she was. Lastly, the story was way too long which was not at all necessary. Overall, I was not impressed. I am sorry, Nora!
- What did I like? Oh, yes. There is one thing that I liked about Lila. She has a purse and it has many useful stuff in it, really. Not only does she have make up, it also contains many tools such as duct tape, sewing kit, screw drivers, etc. She knows how to use them and poor Ashton depends on others to fix his stuff. This quality of hers was one of the reasons that made him fall in love with her. But then, this gets me thinking: If he liked this quality of hers, then why did he felt the need to change Lila’s mentality? This quality of hers reflects her strength, self-reliance, and the ability to take care of herself. If he did like this side of hers, why did he want to make Lila to depend on him? It was a little inconsistent here. Another thing that I liked was the friendship between the heroine and her best friend (Julie). They were really close as it was the nature of close friendships, I guess. I have never experienced that kind so I was attracted by their closeness.
My favorite quote: “She’d tear them up, and she’d say what she’d written in them, face-to-face, because some words shouldn’t go unsaid. But she felt better knowing she’d written them, knowing the written word had power, and love would shine through it.”
My favorite scene: When Lila was saved by a teeny tiny dog. Earl Grey. She defended herself with the help of a teacup poodle. Lila was being kidnapped by someone at which point Earl Grey rescued her by jumping out of Lila’s purse, at which point Lila was able to punch the kidnapper in the face and run for her life as the kidnapper was taken by surprise of the dog’s movement. The kidnapper didn’t know that Lila had a dog in her purse.
My rating: 2 stars
I hope you found my review useful. Got any suggestions? Was I too vague? Please let me know. Thanks in advance.