I picked up Bared to You by Sylvia Day because of the many times I had heard it compared to Fifty Shades. I was a fan of Fifty and thought it would be fun to read something similar. And let me tell you, Bared to You is similar all right. So similar that it was almost like Ms. Day read Fifty Shades and decided she could do it bigger and better. I am so torn on my review for this book. So much so that even as I type these words I still have no clue what my overall grade is going to be.
Eva Tramell has started her first job, out of college, at an advertising agency. Before her first day she wants to walk the route from her apartment to see how much time it will take. After stopping to help a woman pick up some loose change she stumbles and falls at the feet of Gideon Cross (sound familiar?). Gideon Cross is a force of nature, just the way he is described makes me a little school girl giggly.
Inky black hair framed a breathtaking face. His bone structure would make a sculptor weep with joy, while a firmly etched mouth , a blade of a nose, and intensely blue eyes made him savagely gorgeous.
His dress shirt and suit were both black, but his tie perfectly matched those brilliant irises. His eyes were shrewd and assessing, and they bored into me. My heartbeat quickened; my lips parted to accommodate faster breaths. He smelled sinfully good. Not cologne. Body wash, maybe. Or shampoo. Whatever it was, it was mouth-watering, as was he.
Gideon is a man with a lot of money and he owns the building Eva works in and no surprise, the one she lives in also. This allows him full access to information on Eva that most people would not have. Gideon takes full advantage of that information and starts down the path of, what I can’t decide, is either stalking or very deep devotion.
After only a handful of meetings Gideon tells Eva he wants to sleep with her. Eva is shocked at his proposition and responds that she has to have some sort of connection with someone she is sleeping with. Gideon agrees to give a relationship a chance, not in the sense they would be “dating” but they would at least have something outside of the quick shag. As the book progresses, Gideon decides he wants it all.
So now let’s talk about why I am so torn. When I read Fifty Shades, Christian and Ana, were characters in a book, for me. When Christian smirked for the 100th time, I could smirk too because he was a story character that I was reading about. The writing in Bared to You is so much better and smoother than the Fifty Shades trilogy that I think it made the characters more believable. I could actually see Gideon and Eva as real people and I have heard more than one person make this same comment. They could be real people with real issues. Both of them have faced abuse in their lives. While Eva has been to counseling and faced her demons, Gideon has gone about the avoidance route. His avoidance creates problems for them they both have trouble dealing with. Eva is a runner, meaning when the going gets tough she is out the door. Her excuse is that she cannot be with someone that isn’t 100% honest with her and faced his fears. Maybe because she has dealt with her abuse, Eva comes off as the more stable of the two?
Then we have Gideon. Gideon runs hot and cold for me. He is one messed up dude. There were times when his obsessiveness was hot and then times where there word STALKER was screaming through my head. Very, very loudly. One scene, in particular, really turned me off.
His gaze was on the wall illuminated by the picture light, which snagged my attention, too. I was startled when I saw the art- a huge collage of blown-up photos of him and me: the picture of our kiss on the street outside the gym…a shot of us from the press gauntlet at the advocacy dinner…a candid of the tender aftermath of our fight in Bryant Park… The focal point was the image in the center that has been taken while I slept in my own bed, lit only be the candle I’d left burning for him.
It was an intimate voyeuristic shot, on that said more about the photographer than it did the subject. I was deeply touched by the proof he’d been falling along with me.
So this is where I was lost. Wouldn’t any normal woman react badly to the fact that a man had been taking pictures of her sleeping and then made a wall-sized collage out of those pictures? And to top it off, he took the picture of her sleeping and re-created a room in his house that looked exactly like her bedroom. He told her it could be her safe place if things ever got too overwhelming while she was with him. Creeeeepy.
We also meet a very fascinating secondary charcter in Eva’s roommate, Cary. He is just as messed up as the other two. He is bi-sexual, in love with one man but constantly sabotaging that relationship by sleeping with other women. He is an excellent support system and advice giver to Eva but can’t get out of his own way for nothing. I really hope we get to see him happy, at some point.
Yes, for the most part I was sucked right into this book. I look forward to the next one, if only to find out if Eva and Gideon can solve their issues in ways that don’t include them being naked or plastered to each other. I would like more of an emotional connection between the two of them than I got in this book. This book was more about obsession and the initial attachment. Now I want to know what will bind them together in a more permanent fashion and I hope that it is something other than they both are too messed up for anyone else. Maybe I can do a combo final grade? Stalker portions- F Rest of book-B
He stood with economical grace, pulling me up with him. We maintained eye contact because I was unable to look away. He was younger than I’d assumed at first. Younger than thirty would be my guess, but his eyes were much worldlier. Hard and sharply intelligent.
I felt drawn to him, as if a rope bound my waist and he was slowly, inexorably pulling it. Blinking out of my semi-daze, I released him. He wasn’t just beautiful; he was…enthralling. He was the kind of guy that made a woman want to rip his shirt open and watch the buttons scatter along with her inhibitions. I looked at him in his civilized, urbane outrageously expensive suit and thought of raw, primal, sheet-clawing fucking.