Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Post Reading: The Obsession - Nora Roberts


Title: The Obsession
Author: Nora Roberts
Published: April 14th 2016 by Piatkus
Source: Publisher
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She changed her name. She changed her life. But someone won't let her go. The brand-new novel of love, drama and hope from legendary Nora Roberts. 

Naomi Carson is a survivor. As a child, her family was torn apart by a shocking crime. It could have destroyed her, but Naomi has grown up strong, with a passion for photography that has taken her all around the world. 

Now, at last, she has decided to put down roots. The beautiful old house on Point Bluff needs work, but Naomi has new friends in town who are willing to help, including Xander Keaton - gorgeous, infuriating and determined to win her heart. 

But as Naomi plans for the future, her past is catching up with her. Someone in town knows her terrifying secret - and won't let her forget it. As her new home is rocked by violence, Naomi must discover her persecutor's identity, before it's too late.


With over 200 books under her belt Nora Roberts has mastered the art of story telling. However, when you release this many books it's only natural that your books get somewhat formulaic. Nevertheless, it's formula that works pretty well for Roberts. Whenever I'm in a reading slump I can count one of Robert's contemporaries or her In Death books to pull me out so it's no surprise that I enjoyed her recent release, The Obsession.

The Obsession follows the story of Naomi who witnesses a very horrible crime at a very young age. The secret she uncovers not only saves a life but also drastically changes her life as well as that of her family's. As a reader it was hard not to care about Naomi who despite her childhood grows up to be resilient and talented young woman. But the night that she discovers the terrible truth about her family and the subsequent events have left a mark forcing her to literally outrun her past. She stumbles across a massive, run down house away from the city in a place called Sunrise Cove which she purchases on a whim. As she works on renovating the house she slowly begins to make a couple of friends who slowly coax her out of her solitude. 

Xander, Naomi's love interest is a mechanic, reader (swoon!) and guitarist in a local band. I have to admit that this was a little over the top even for Nora Roberts! Over the top character perfection aside, Xander's character was an endearing one. What I enjoyed about Naomi's and Xander's relationship was that there was mutual respect for each other (none of that over the top alpha male crap!). Often romances tend to do this whole push-pull angst thing that's not just frustrating but also completely unnecessary. Thankfully, Roberts veers off this well trodden course and portrays Naomi and Xander as two straightforward characters who know what they want.

One of the strengths of this novel is its well developed cast of secondary characters especially Naomi's brother, Mason and her new friends Kevin and Jenny - I'd actually love to see a book that focuses on Mason's story! Another thing that I adored about the book was its attention to detail. Roberts has definitely done her research and this shines through when she seamlessly weaves details about Naomi's photography business, the interior design process and details about the behavioral analysis process (courtesy of Mason, Naomi's brother and FBI special agent).

The Obsession was however, not without its issues. The biggest being is it's predictability factor. I guessed the antagonist earlier in the story so this ruined the suspense for me. However, Robert's trademark writing kept me turning the pages. My second issue with The Obsession is it's problematic inclusion of sexism in its dialogue. Slut shaming is not a new thing in this specific genre but I was incredibly disappointed to see a renowned author such as Roberts commit this offence in her novels. 


3 and a half Stars


You saved a life before your twelfth birthday. Don’t ever forget that.


The Obsession's biggest strengths are the slow burn romance and well developed solid characters. It's definitely worth checking out for fans of the romantic suspense genre. 



Have you read Nora Roberts's The Obsession? What is your favorite novel by Roberts?

1 comment :

  1. WHAT A COINCIDENCE- I just started High Noon today!! It's my first ever Nora Roberts book and I don't know what to really expect, but her writing is something everyone comments upon, so I'm having quite high hopes for that. However, the slut-shaming in Obsession that you talked about is a sliiiight letdown. High time authors- especially well-established ones- gave this more thought! Great review, Nuz!

    Ruzaika @ The Regal Critiques


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