Thursday, June 28, 2012

Bared to You (Crossfire #1) - Sylvia Day

Our journey began in fire... Gideon Cross came into my life like lightning in the darkness-beautiful and brilliant, jagged and white-hot. I was drawn to him as I'd never been to anything or anyone in my life. I craved his touch like a drug, even knowing it would weaken me. I was flawed and damaged, and he opened those cracks in me so easily... Gideon knew. He had demons of his own. And we would become the mirrors that reflected each other's most private wounds... and desires. The bonds of his love transformed me, even as I prayed that the torment of our pasts didn't tear us apart...

Published: May 24, 2012 - Pages: 369 - Links to purchase at Amazon or B&N

"It's time to discuss what it's going to take to get you beneath me."

Review: ***4 1/2 stars***

Sylvia Day made me want to go into a room, lock the door, curl up into a ball and read this story from cover to cover. This book has it all - dark pasts, controlling men, beautiful people, wealth and power. The story features Eva Tramell, a twenty-something college graduate from a wealthy and influential family that wants to make her way in the world based on her own merits. Eva is no virgin, and comes with her own dark past. Eva lives with her bisexual best friend, Cary, with whom she has a completely platonic relationship with. Cary is beautiful, and an aspiring model with a penchant for falling in love with the "right" guys and then screwing up those relationships with the "wrong" woman or man. Cary shares with Eva a dark and disturbed past.

Before Eva's first day on her new job at an advertising agency, she scopes out her place of work.  She accidentally bumps into a tall, dark and beautiful man.  This is our first introduction to Gideon Cross.  Unbeknownst at the time to Eva, Gideon Cross is the owner of the building she works in, The Crossfire Building.  Immediately, Gideon's demeanor changes when he looks at Eva.  Something happens between them, leaving Eva breathless and Gideon on the hunt, so to speak.  Gideon is magnetic. He's full of maleness and confidence and immediately enthralls Eva with his looks and his grace. Eva is no shrinking violet. The first thing she thinks about after she meets Gideon is what it would be like to have sex with him. Her thoughts include the words "primal" and sheet-clawing."
As he stared back, he if a shield slid away from his eyes, revealing a scorching  force of will that sucked the air from my lungs.  The intense magnetism he exuded grew in strength, becoming a near tangible impression of vibrant and unrelenting power.
Eva's second day of work brings her interesting news - her boss explains that he received a request for proposal (RFA) from Kingsman Vodka, a company owned by Crossfire Industries.  Eva is invited to the pitch, and the pull between Eva and Gideon begins in earnest.  Eva and Gideon's relationship begins, him by wanting nothing more than to have sex with her, and her playing hard to get.  Eva might like sex, but she's nobody's toy.  There are lunch meetings and dates, and their relationship progresses.  Eva demands that sex with her be personal.  She says that there doesn't necessarily need to be romance, but she requires friendliness and respect.  I like Eva very much because she doesn't give in to Cross like a doe-eyed little girl caught in the headlights of a rich and powerful man.  Eva's from a similar background to Cross - she wants Cross, but she's going to do it on her terms.  Although Gideon sees Eva as "trouble" for him, he is drawn to her and cannot let her go. When Eva rejects Cross' suggestion of no-strings-attached sex, he is the one willing to "revisit and revise" what he wants from a relationship with her.

"You look beautiful and fuckable.  I want you so badly it hurts.  I'm dangerously close to taking you back to the couch and making you come 'til you beg me to stop."
So Eva and Gideon begin a friendly relationship.  Eva learns that Gideon has a dark and tortured past.  This is a plus for me as a reader, because there are few things I adore more than dark and twisted pasts.  I love tortured and vulnerable characters, making this book like a drug for me.  Gideon makes many mistakes along the way, which I chalk up to him not knowing how to deal with Eva.  He's falling in love with a woman against his better judgment.  He doesn't really know how to be in a normal relationship.  We see the darkness in Gideon several times, but Eva does her best to stand by her man.  We discover Eva's twisted secrets, but Gideon's run deeper and darker.  He is very disturbed by something that happened in his past.

"I'm going to possess you, Eva. It's only fair since you've possessed me."
My only problem with Eva is that her answer to any problem with Gideon is to run away.  If she's feeling hurt, used, pissed, jealous or any negative emotion, her answer is to take off without a word.  The first time she does this, I can understand her fears.  But by the end of the book, I had had enough of that behavior.   Eva has a few moments where she really can't make up her mind about what she really wants from Gideon.  One minute, Eva thinks Gideon only wants sex from her.  When he shows the world that he's in an actual relationship with her, she's not quite happy with that, either.  

"I can let you in, Eva.  I'm trying.  But your first response when I screw up is to run away.  You do it every time and I can't stand feeling like any moment I'm going to do or say something wrong, and you're going to bolt."
There are a few places in this book where Gideon deserves Eva's anger, no more so than at the end with the introduction of someone from Gideon's past.  But to be fair, Gideon is very up front with Eva, and I believe that he really does want and love Eva.  However, both of these characters have dark and desperate pasts to deal with, and until they do that, they will continue to hurt one another.  I especially enjoyed when Eva put her foot down concerning Gideon's ex calling him every day.  Gideon, like many men, cannot see why or how this would bother Eva to the degree that it does.  Ha!  I love how Eva plays him at the end of the book - telling him that if he doesn't put an immediate end to his ex's infatuation with him, that she will take his cue while dealing with her own ex-boyfriends.  This is just the type of thing to drive Gideon crazy!  Gideon, though, is able to show his vulnerabilities to Eva, which is a big start for him.

Like I stated earlier, I'm a sucker for dark and tortured characters.  This book delivers on several characters that can fit this description.  From Eva and Gideon, to Cary and even Magdalene and Corinne (both ex-lovers of Gideon).  I think we're going to see a lot of drama in the next book.  I think that Corinne is going to play a bigger role in aggravating Eva, and I think that Corinne isn't all that she appears.  I think Gideon is going to make progress on his past issues, and that Eva will be there with him, until she can't handle the jealousy that she will undoubtedly have because of his ex-lovers.  I think Deeper into You is going to be an emotional roller coaster, and I'm just happy to say that I will most definitely be along for the ride!  

"Oh, Eva."  He rubbed his cheek against my damp face.  "I must've wished for you so hard and so often that you had no choice but to come true."


Underworld Love Addiction said...

I liked this book too :) It started out a little Fifty-ish but I loved Gideon!

Cimmaron @ Talksupe said...

Glad you liked this book. Gideon and Eva are seriously damaged but I loved them both separately and together. Really looking forward to the next book and finding about Gideon's past and how big of a role Gideon's ex will play. Eva does not mess around with competing with other women and I love how she's equally jealous as Gideon is. Great review!

Braine Talk Supe said...

Yay! Finally ypu've read this! I sooo love Eva maybe a tinge more than Gideon. They are so perfect for each other from their similar pasts to their present. They are equals in intelligence and even in guarding their emotions reading their relationship unfold is like watching chess, so smart and very emotional. Love the quotes you shared.

Loupe Duffy said...

Oh.. why? why? not me, I just couldn't love Gideon, I wanted too, but I just couldn't, I didn't feel his character as well developed as it could have been, I felt that the author wanted to impress me with his wealth, I did like the book tho, I'm ready for the next one, maybe I'll find the magic of Gideon.
Great work!

Jamie said...

@Loupe - See, I didn't think the author wanted to impress me with his wealth, but that might be because I had already read Fifty, and Christian seems to throw his money around a LOT more than Gideon ;-) If I had read this first, then I might have thought that, too!

@ULA, Cim and Braine - I actually read this right after Vain did, I just couldn't get my stuff together to write a review, lol!

Thanks, all, for your comments :)

Tina B said...

Wonderful review, Jamie! I enjoy those dark and tortured characters also. I already have it on my TBR list. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. :)

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