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Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday Flashback

From August 2002:

Crossing the Line by Laura Castoro. Contemporary romance.

I was afraid when I read the back of this book that I would have trouble relating to the characters---I have very little experience with racism, and I'm not particularly religious. But nothing could have been further from the truth. I was drawn into these characters' lives so well that I literally could not stop reading. It kept me up until 3 a.m. ! on a school night ! which left me with about 3 1/2 hours' worth of sleep, so that should tell you something.

I fell absolutely in love with Xavier. Somehow, his charisma was translated to the page, & I understood why people were drawn to him. A very effective personality trait for a minister or a politician. He was calmly confident, without the bluster or aggressiveness of many romantic heroes, and it made him seem even stronger in comparison. His insecurity about his appeal for Thea and at the end (avoiding spoilers here, because it's a biggie) only made him more attractive, because he'd been established as a strong man. His faith, a practical, down-to-the-bone faith, only added to his appeal. It didn't make him holier-than-thou or hypocritical, just seemed an integral part of him.

Thea was much easier to identify with than I'd expected. All of us have at one time or another felt like outsiders, & it was her struggle to just be herself that kept me reading until the wee hours. I could feel her anger, pain, & sorrow with her in-laws, her bemusement & annoyance with her husband's best friend. I could feel the steel go into her spine when she stood up for herself with Xavier's family & felt her anger with him at putting her on the spot. But the emotions between Thea & Selma and Thea & Jesse and Thea & David were the ones that hit me the hardest. I'm getting tears in my eyes just remembering. The sisters both hurting because of the distance between them, and the teenage daughter's waffling between independence & dependence, self-centeredness & understanding, getting bitchy & then apologizing was so realistic. I have a 17-year-old daughter, & believe me, I recognize Jesse's behavior. As for David, well, he just broke my heart.

To top it off, when I finally finished the book the next morning, I didn't want to start reading anything else right away, which to me is one of the surest signs of a really satisfying book. I was reluctant to leave their world, but at the same time, it was okay to close the book because I knew they'd be all right.

All in all, a wonderful story, one I'm sure I'll read again.
You can read the entire thread, including a conversation with the author, here.

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Interesting reviews and discussion thread at Berkley forum. It been so long since I've been in the forum :) I love reading what everyone have to say, and was so surprise to see Annie, Jill and Sara there *sniff*.

It has been 7yrs since this book came out. But maybe I check this one out :)
It really was an excellent book, well worth looking for. I even remembered it after 7 years, so that's definitely a good sign. :)
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