Reviewed by Tori
Jo Wilder is a tabloid photographer whose reluctance to exploit celebrity lives may lead to her unemployment if she doesn’t develop a tougher skin. When a much-needed celebrity sighting is interrupted by a bystander, Jo tries to be angry but he is far too handsome and charming for her to hold her ire. When she later learns he is the Micah Sinclair, the current bad boy of rock, she wants to kick herself for yet once again missing the shot. But soon Micah is stalking her, wanting a different kind of exclusive. Jo has heard the rumors that Sinclair is a media junkie who chases publicity and fears she is the one being used but can’t resist the chemistry between them. As she and Micah grow closer, she discovers that fame carries its own problems when she suddenly finds herself on the other side of the lens.
When I first picked this story up, I had no idea that it was the 2nd book in loosely arranged series. No worries though, Marlowe offers enough background to make this a comfortable standalone read. I adored the premise of this story; a reluctant paparazza meets and falls in love with a notorious rock musician. The story opens with an entertaining meet cute. Our heroine is chasing down a money shot when she is camera-blocked by a very good looking man. Some flirty dialogue and amusing initial misunderstanding set the stage for what looked to be a fun and sexy rom com.
Celebrities, tabloids, and trust are the base of this story. Marlowe asks through her heroine just how much of a celebrity’s life is the public entitled to? Getting the inside scoop on a gossip-fueled tabloid is interesting as we see the hustle, bustle, and the ethical issues that arise. Add in an uncertain romance and some internal angst and you have a winner. Or you should have. While the story starts out strong with an engaging bumbling heroine having a crisis of conscience, it’s energy gradually weans and the flow of the story becomes more choppy as Marlowe seems to have trouble maintaining the balance.
Jo Wilder is a photographer who works for a tabloid. Jo hates stalking celebs and is terrible at it but her need for health insurance trumps all. Meeting Micah Sinclair is both a blessing and a curse. His star power could make her career but she is uncomfortable with the thought of using him. A growing attraction between them also confuses her because she’s unsure if he wants Jo the woman or Jo the photographer.
Micah Sinclair is a flirty charismatic rockstar whose cult-like childhood more than prepared him for the rigors of fame. Thought to be a publicity chaser, Jo soon learns he is a genuine guy who befriends the press in hopes it helps to keep them off his equally famous but less tolerant sister, Eden, who is the heroine of book one. I liked Micah though it was hard to get a good handle on him because the story is told in the first person and every character in here orbits around Jo. Micah does everything possible to get through to Jo but her guilt over her job and her other insecurities set up wall after wall between them.
Jo had so much room to grow in the story but her indecisiveness, daddy issues, and victimhood weigh her down. She constantly needs saving in form or fashion. She takes one step forward and four steps back. She’s in her 30s but acts more in her early 20s and there is a lack of clarity and focus in her life. Low self-esteem and insecurity are magnified and excused throughout the book by her medical and abandonment issues. She blames her father for her lack of direction while subconsciously courting his approval. Her roommate plays the dual roles of keeper and best friend as he helps Jo keep her diabetes under control. While I understand type one diabetes is unbelievably hard to control, Jo seems almost willfully disobedient in her own self-care.
A personable secondary cast helps to add depth and contrast to the story. Eden, Micah’s sister, is a strong presence in the background that reminds every one of the intrusive nature of the press. Zion, Jo’s bestie, is a vibrant addition to the story and his small romance was quite potent in its development.
Lightweight and predictable, we know early on what is the end goal. Jo must learn to stick up for herself to her opportunist boss and walk her own path regardless of her father’s approval. While the romance is the main factor of the story, it also acts as the catalyst that forces Jo to make some major decisions concerning her life. As Jo and Micah explore their attraction, Jo struggles with her self-worth as she is catapulted into the spotlight.
While A Crazy Kind of Love fails to deliver all it promises, it’s a fast and easy read that requires no commitment.