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Monday, January 26, 2009

Your Planet Or Mine?

*** Your Planet or Mine? by Susan Grant. Contemporary paranormal romance.

I ordered several books by Susan Grant on a recommendation from someone. I can't remember who, though I do remember that it was in response to me mentioning that I liked science fiction romance and that it was rare. This is the first of the books I've read.

Jana Jasper is a member of a political family. When she was a young girl, she couldn't speak. Then she met a glowing boy and rescued him from a tree outside her bedroom window. She thought of him as "Peter" (as in Peter Pan), and when he heals her skinned knee, she's suddenly able to talk.

Years later, Jana has parlayed her "gift of gab" into a political career and is now a senator. "Peter"--whose real name is Cavin, and who she's convinced herself was an imaginary friend--returns with a tale of impending invasion, and a cyborg assassin hot on his heels. It's up to Jana and Cavin to save the earth.

I like "light" books. Given a choice, I'll always pick the funny book over the serious one. Humor generally raises a book in my estimation. But this one just fell flat for me.

Part children's story about believing in yourself and "using your words" (****minor spoiler****Cavin didn't actually restore Jana's speech, and her "gift of gab" was the key to saving the day**** and part cheesy sci fi, with almost an afterthought of romance--or sexual attraction, Your Planet Or Mine? didn't quite deliver on any of those levels.

Mostly, I think, it was just too simplistic. For example, Jana's family had no trouble whatsoever believing that Cavin was an alien and that an invasion was imminent. And the language and customs barriers were far too easily overcome. Then there was what could have been an interesting conflict with the cyborg assassin, but that plot thread was glossed over and shortchanged and instead just became repetitive and dull. Also given short shrift was the plot thread involving Cavin being more or less assigned to marry his Queen.

And the romance just wasn't there. It was one of those stories where love = sexual attraction, no emotional content necessary. Though that's apparently a matter of taste, or belief. I can never buy the love-at-first-sight kind of romances, at least not unless that initial attraction is followed up by some genuine emotion. Finding someone "hot" doesn't do the trick for me.

It's not a terrible story, by any means, but it's definitely a casual read--not something you really need to pay close attention to. My overwhelming impression at the end of the book was that it felt like a kids' book with sex added to make it for grown-ups.

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