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Monday, January 14, 2013

Review: The Cliff by Christie AC Gucker

Title: The Cliff
Series: No
Author: Christie A.C. Gucker
Tour: Yes, Sizzling PR
Published: September 2012, Pagan Writer's Press
Format: Ebook provided for review

Can a childhood pact affect the lives of three adults?

Love and betrayal surrounds the lives of lifelong friends Lanie Rhodes, Grant Bennett, and Dane Voight. Years ago, they made a pact to remain together as friends forever. The boys also made another secret pact that same day—to never vie for Lanie’s love.

Grant and Lanie have secretly been pining for one another since they were children.

Now grown up, they finally admit their feelings for each other and what ensues is a twisted tale of deception as Dane does everything he can to stop them.

The story weaves around this uneven love triangle. What will happen to the pact? Will friendships be destroyed? Will lovers emerge?

Ok… this book.  Whew.  This was quite a story, it really ran me through the wringer.  I signed up for this tour a while ago.  The excerpt I read sounded really interesting, I knew nothing else.  Then just before I started reading it, I looked it up.  As it turns out this book started out as Fan Fiction of the movie Twilight.  I have never, at least that I know of, read and Fan Fiction, so now I was definitely curious.   In fact, I ended up going to my blogger friends for a bit of clarification, and Danielle at Book Whore Blog ended up writing a piece about it.  So if you are as confused as I was, and still a little am, then maybe it could help you too! 

Lanie, Grant and Dane grew up together.  Their parents had been friends forever, built all of their homes on a cliff together, and started a business together.  The three families made a new family of their own.  Now the parents have stepped aside and the three children run the business and reside in the homes.  There’s always been a sort of triangle between them, but there have been pacts to prevent anything from tearing up their happy threesome.  But that whole world is about to change, because Grant and Lanie are going to break the pacts and admit their feelings for eachother.  No, not feelings.  Love.  LOVE.  Surely Dane would understand, right?

I really loved this story.  I loved it for a lot of reasons.  One, there is this intricate architecture between everyone.  You have so many different levels;  parents, children who are now adults, cousins, in laws, outsiders.  It was really something to see everything tie in together and form this whole braid of life. Two, sex.  Oh my goodness, the sex.  There was a lot of sex.  Anyone who reads my blog knows I enjoy reading about it.  There was one point in this book where I actually wrote in my notes “Ok, there is TOO much sex.”  But then there was a point when the sex was gone, and I missed it.  So that begs the question, is too much ever enough? Ahem…. And three, more drama than you can shake a stick at!

This story is told from Lanie’s point of view.  As the only female in the precious trio, she was treasured.  But not just by Dane and Grant, but by everyone.  At times I felt like she was a bit whiney and a bit coddled.  But overall this woman was an enjoyable character for me.  When she was a strong young woman is when I liked her most.

So the triangle?  Well, Dane doesn’t exactly handle everything too well.  He really brings in some mystery and drama, and I just loved his character.  To me, he kind of felt like a Stephen Baldwin, both in looks and temperament.  Hot, young, cocky, arrogant… capable of anything?  When we get our hearts broken we all act in ways we wouldn’t expect.  And Dane is no different.  I hated him and I loved him.  Terrific character.

I have a lot of feelings about this book.  At times it was such high heat, I thought the paint would peel.  Sometimes that was coupled with such intense emotion, I was in awe.  At a couple points I thought it could turn into a mystery.  Sometimes I was angry, and others just frustrated.  A few characters got on my nerves once in a while.  For my tastes some of it was a bit overkill.  Then there was intense joy, and heartbreaking sadness that had me bawling like a baby.  Oh yeah, mascara running and burning my eyeballs.  I had to read the epilogue  a couple times.  There is definitely a full gambit in these pages.  Overall?  I can’t get it out of my head.  I’m thinking about reading the epilogue again!  I don’t know if it is still classified as Fan Fiction.  Personally, I saw almost no similarities.  But I am definitely glad I read it.

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Christie A.C. Gucker lives in NJ with her husband, two daughters and a menagerie of pets. Being a mother is one of the greatest joys of her life. She has worked in the advertising industry for over 20 years as a degreed artist, but also works in the fine arts, especially sculpting out of stone or snapping photographs. Christie is also a singer and musician, and can be found singing on a few CDs.

After the death of her father, Christie searched for something to fill her desire to make a mark in this world. Her love of the arts and creativity allowed her to search for a new medium, which she found with a pen instead of a brush. Being an avid reader her whole life, and with her family cheering her on, she decided to take her shot, and began writing.

Fascinated by the supernatural and sharks, Christie studies both avidly. You’ll be sure to find something spooky lurking somewhere in her stories. Her greatest joy is sitting on a beach with her family while surf fishing, flying kites or building sandcastles with her girls.

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