Long time geek, fangirl, mother, and reader. I've got a lot to say, you might not like it all, but it will be honest and hopefully helpful.
The Siren isn’t a romance, but it is a story about love in its many varied forms. Romance is the ideal, the dream, but love, real love isn’t pretty. It doesn’t fit together neatly and it rarely blossoms where we think it should. Most of all love does not fix everything, in fact it usually is the root of the problem.
While the title would lead us to believe that this is Nora Sutherlin’s story the men in her life share the spotlight in this wild, emotionally raw tale. Each one of them are as distinct and fascinating in his own right, not to mention three dimensional. If you’re seeking the bland, cliche, paper doll heros of mainstream fiction you will be knock on your ass by these vibrant men, and Nora...well, she’s going to blow your mind.
I’ve been waiting a long time for a character like Nora and a story like The Siren. Despite the fact that women have a powerful presence in literature I’ve struggled to find a strong, intelligent, sexually liberated female character in fiction. Sure there are a lot of pretenders, but they’re all Sandra Dees and Cindarellas playing dress up, who reenforce the worst kind of slut shaming, sexist stereotypes imaginable. I’m sick and tired of being spoon fed this bullshit and had all but given up hope.
Thank god for Nora!
She’s the real deal. A hedonist, a wild woman, femme fetal and not the kind of woman who waits around for a man to get a clue. She actively peruses men (and even the occasional woman), cracks lewd jokes and drinks in life with an insatiable thirst that at times I envy. Nora is the kind of woman that brings the people around her to their knees with a turn of a phrase and wink. Though her most endearing characteristic is her capacity to love.
We follow her journey while she attempts to make a real go at being the writer she hopes she could be. Watching while she meets and seduces men with her energy and light. And wonder at the complicated web of intertwining threads of love that entangle her life. Each man brings a new complication and yet they are a gift in their own right.
Zach, Nora’s editor, is a tragic figure, the lonely king without a homeland. His story and life is just as complicated as Nora’s, though not as colorful. Under the dower, uptight exterior of an Englishman lies a brilliant, charming rogue. Yeah, I’ve got a crush on him, obviously.
Wesley, Nora’s “intern” is a bit of a puzzle himself. At first glance he appears to be the classic knight in shinning armor, who also has diabetes and possibly a secret in his past. His purity is like a shinning beacon, but this cowboy comes with a whole mess of his own complications.
Kingsley, well you’ll see for yourself. Same goes for Griffin. Ha!
Which leaves Søren...Nora’s ex is like the dark shadow that lurks behind her through the whole story. Even when he’s not there we feel him there. I can’t say to much without spoiling the story, but I will say he is a controversial character, who will challenge readers and leave many unsettled.
Which (at least partially) explains why I love him so much. This is the kind of character you think and talk about for days after finishing the book. When it comes to a man like Søren nothing is as it seems. Something that can be said about many iconic characters, which I think he is. Yeah, I’ve got it bad for him, I know. *blush*
I would encourage all readers to reserve judgement about him and everything in the book until they reach the end, because there are so many twists and turns. Just like many things life, you never really can be sure you understand until you see the whole picture and even then you may need time to process it all.
If the review is sounding like a love letter, well it is. I fell in love with every one of these characters and this book. It’s so much more than a love story, though at it’s heart it is one. Far more than one of the most realistic portrayals of BDSM that I have EVER seen (on paper or on film). It’s a human story, about people who are so real you will scream at them, cry for them and wish you could hold them to tell them it’s going to be alright.
Be warned this book will take over your life. You will lose sleep until you finish it and you will fall in love. Now, go read it so we can talk about it!