Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Review: The Reporter & The Girl — S. C. Rhyne

When reading my twitter feed I found someone asking for readers to review their debut novel. As a reader with a keen interest in new and relatively unknown authors, I jumped at this opportunity. When I started the book I was had a clear idea of what I thought it was going to be like. However, this book surpassed my expectations. Dancing with the two perspectives gave the book a whole new dimension, which I felt positively transformed the way I thought about the characters. This isn’t some hyper erotic rampage; it’s a story about two very unique characters. I think it is the kind of story you could see happening in real life.


Welcome to the rabbit hole...I am the last person in New York City who would fall head over heels in love. Independent. Self-possessed. Why would I want to f**k that up?My online dating profile at simply reads: “Just looking.”
So why am I obsessing about Jon Sudbury?Jon, the reporter, is vanilla as a milkshake and has probably never tasted rice and beans on the same plate before we met.
At least that’s what I thought. Why can’t people remain simple and predictable?All I want is control, not to be sent hurtling at maximum speed into the unknown. 
Nothing about our story makes sense.The thing is, I can handle desire, lust, passion, even betrayal...
But love is another world altogether. And this is not a love story.
*For mature audiences only


The book cover is pretty unique in style. I like the heavily sketched kind of look and the addition of the pink cane (an element which makes more sense after reading the book). It doesn’t really give a lot away about the story, apart from aspects of the appearance of the two main characters. I find it difficult to match up the title to the story. Why is the male referred to by his job title, while the female is referred to by her gender alone? I’m sure literature students could pick this apart from a feminist perspective.

The synopsis totally gripped me. It’s the whole reason I wanted to read this book. The narrator sounds powerful and sassy, without being a purely seductive character. She has the sort of depth you don’t find in erotic books, which I thought this would be because of the reference to bd-fet. After reading the novel I felt the voice used in the synopsis, while attention catching, feels more aggressive than our main character actually is.

The writing style took me by surprise. It flowed smoothly and was enjoyable. While at times I found the actions of the characters (which I saw to be rather incompatible from the beginning) to be a little annoying, the novel was so well written that I kept going and I was happy that I did. The characters were different from other stereotypes that often appear in romance and drama stories. Having the book told from their perspective made it interesting, but giving the second view point of Jon, on occasion, really helped make the story feel more rounded. Here are two characters that poorly communicate, but could perhaps get to common ground if they could just get over the things which hold them back. But like most real people, they don’t just drop everything, discuss everything and kiss in the rain.

There were only two parts that caught me off guard in the book. The first description of taboo behaviour occurred suddenly, was factually reported in a few sentences and that was that. When the paragraph started I was expecting some real hard core erotica – I’m glad it wasn’t there, as that kind of stuff isn’t really to my taste! I just found it strange how swiftly it was dealt with in the narrative. I think this is just Rhyne showing how Sabrien feels about sex and relationships. This wasn’t really a big hang up for me. The ending, however, left me feeling high and dry. There I was, at the edge of (story’s!) climax and it feels like Rhyne just cuts us off. I’m used to cliff hangers (Stephen King likes them, a lot), but I found myself flicking through the ebook, wondering if pages had gone missing or were corrupted. I would have liked a chapter more just to give a better feeling of tying everything up.

Maybe it feels quantity wise that I didn’t like this book – but I did! I thought it was great. It just had this… x-factor about it. I can’t put my finger on what exactly made me enjoy it so much. It had things that generally turn me off – like romance between two incompatible people and a sometimes rude, dislikeable and ignorant love interest – but these things didn’t even irk me. Maybe that is what I enjoyed the book so much: Rhyne’s ability to put elements of stories that I don’t like into a novel I could enjoy. I would say that is pretty amazing.

I would like to thank Rhyne for allowing me to read her ebook for free in exchange for an honest review and I hope she pens many more books in the future.



  1. Thanks Evening E-book for taking on this read, I know it was definitely a unique story but I love your synopsis, and am available to do an author interview, if you have any further questions about the X factor!

    1. That would be awesome! I will send you an email :)


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