Publisher: ThunderStruck Publishing (November 2, 2011)
Format: Kindle Edition
When Ali Grange’s boyfriend, Aiden, trash talks the school hockey team’s star player, everyone expects Griffin ‘The Grief Master’ to retaliate with his fists. Before he can, Ali begs Griffin to leave Aiden alone. He agrees but his price for doing so is a kiss. It takes some convincing but finally Ali agrees to his deal and they share one brief, magical kiss. Then everything goes back to normal but it only lasts a short while since Ali can’t get the kiss out of her head. She and Aiden begin fighting and when they eventually break up, one of the hockey cheerleaders sinks her claws into Aiden as quickly as possible. With Aiden out of the picture for good, the unresolved feelings Ali has for Griffin become a full blown crush. Yet when he shows interest, Ali pushes him and her feelings away. They spend the rest of the book playing a cat and mouse game and it’s not until the very end that we learn if the two can ever make it as a couple.
This so rarely happens when it’s time to review because frankly, I adore reviewing new books but I’m feeling rather uninspired tonight. The thought of picking apart this novel is like one big flashing BLAH in my mind, mainly due to the fact that this, my friends, is a book without any substance. Sure, there’s a story there. It’s your basic girl and boy share forbidden passion, girl ignores the passion, and girl and boy skirt around their passion and attraction for ages until finally it all explodes in some pretty harmless G-rated action. The end. Well let me tell you: I really have nothing to add. There’s nothing wrong with this sort of book. It’s generically good and we’re predisposed to like it since this is a book we’ve all read before in one variation or another. It’s easy, it’s formulaic, it gives us warm fuzzies even though the main characters don’t have a lot of depth and the ending has been done a million times over. The writing is decent, everything is believable but in the end, who cares? I couldn’t even remember all that much of the story and I finished it only two days ago. It was like reading cardboard, all bland and one-dimensional. I enjoyed Griffin and Ali’s story but nothing about it stood out as exceptional. Actually, no wait. There was one thing that really stood out but not in a good way: Melanie Marks uses the words luscious and pillow soft in every single sentence that refers to Griffin, The Grief Master’s lips. God, it was annoying! And since the title of the book is His Kiss you gotta realize that we hear about his lips all the freaking time. It got to the point where it was so distracting that I started counting the number of times she referred to the lips as either luscious or pillow soft. Let’s just say I left off at 9 and leave it at that…
Based on the following criteria:
How much did I like the heroine: 4. Ali was just a normal girl and usually
I find that sort of fresh faced, squeaky cleaness appealing. Here, it was just boring except for the pillow soft lips’ thoughts she had and those were just plain disturbing. She actually loses points for that.
How much did I like the love interest: 6. He of the pillow soft, luscious lips, Griffin himself gave me hope for a better book but there’s no depth in his character. He just sounds like a random cute boy who could easily have been replaced by a different cute boy. He was pretty sweet though and the way he was constantly protecting Ali was hot but it wasn’t enough to save him from a 6.
How believable is the plot: 10. It’s beyond believable mainly because the story is so basic and I swear I’ve read something similar before…I swear, there must be a bagillion books of almost this same plot and style being written every day.
How much did I like the writing style/editing/etc: 5. The first pass through didn’t register much but this second one pointed out all sorts of glaring editorial mistakes. If it’s plural in one sentence it’s gotta stay plural in the next, girlfriend! The dialogue was a little stilted and there was really no descriptive prose going on.
How much did I want to keep reading: 2. This was kind of a snoozefest to be honest. Not because it was bad, but because it lacked originality. I didn’t really want to keep reading but felt obligated to due to the short length of the book and obviously the fact that I knew very soon it would be over for good.
Final Score: 5.4 / 10. Like most of the books that turn out to be banal, this only gets a middle of the road score. Read it for something light and unassuming because you won’t get much else.