Welcome to The Bookish Babe's stop on The Art of Love Blog Tour!
My stop includes a review and giveaway.
Category/Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: 6/18/13
Source: Received from author for review
Marina Phillips has spent her entire life as her father’s victim. But enough is enough. All it took was one moment of realization to send her fleeing across the country into the unknown of New York City with no plans and no money. A new life without the constant torture is all she wants, but what she finds waiting is something she never expected.
Fitz is New York’s premiere playboy artist. Sexy, tattooed, and coveted by women and men alike, his performances are heralded as the coming of a new god of modern art. But when Marina wanders into his show, she becomes the inadvertent piece he’s always waited for – a girl to sculpt, to change, and to craft in his own image.
She never expects to fall head over heels into the world of parties, drag queens, agents, and artists craving for her and her benefactor. She didn’t even expect to begin falling in love with someone like Fitz, the sexy, pretentious man of her nightmares.
Above all, Marina never expects her father to stage a cross-country mission to paint her as a kidnapped girl taken by a psychopath.
With her life on the line, Marina has no choice but to accept Fitz’s proposal – change everything she is, inside and out, for the chance to start anew. But Marina has plans of her own. Plans that will rock her world forever.
Many readers, myself included, want books that are unique. The Art of Love is certainly that. This is a story of a young woman, Marina, running from an awful past, desperate for a new place to belong. It is Marina's metamorphosis from a beaten-down girl into a woman who takes control of her life. It is the story of friendship, acceptance, and love.
I liked The Art of Love, but I'm having a hard time pinning down my thoughts. Like I've already stated, this is a unique story, and it was sometimes just so different from what I usually read that I was a bit thrown. Marina literally meets Fitz while he's performing. Naked. His performance art is bold, to say the least, considering that he is always nude. The fact that Fitz practically put his junk in Marina's face, and her reaction, was both shocking and comical. Seeing someone in need of help, Fitz takes Marina in and brings her into his eccentric world. His brother and friends introduce her to a lifestyle that is beyond anything Marina had imagined or experienced. To see this lifestyle, and the people who live it, through her view was interesting.
The Art of Love is definitely Marina's story. The secondary characters were larger than life, and each brought a lot of life to the story. From a distance, Fitz may seem like the stereotypical bad boy, tattooed and rebellious. But this guy was layered, intense, artistic, introspective. His and Marina's relationship is sweet and caring, but also intense. I was simultaneously pleased and frustrated by them together. Of course, I want love to prevail and wanted them to be together. But I also respect the author for forcing the characters to undergo a lot of changes and realizations on their path. Fitz's step-brother Derek, a part-time drag queen, was pretty fabulous. I loved his honesty and humor. Viridian was another great character, a fellow artist and long-time friend to Fitz and Derek, I loved that she took Marina in, and was a true friend.
Now, among all of this, Marina is also hiding from her abusive father. Marina is twenty-one, and obviously old enough to be free of him, but a lifetime of abuse has her convinced he can drag her back home. Her disappearance even becomes national news, which helps spur a lot of changes for her, physically. I get this, I really do, but I just had a hard time understanding why Marina couldn't tell the police and/or media "Hey, I'm an adult and he's awful." And to be fair, that is addressed by Marina's friends. The conclusion to this aspect was very dramatic and seemed a bit, I don't know, off (?), for me. Like, I just couldn't see things really going down like that, but still, it made for a dramatic resolution.
The Art of Love is a thoughtful and intriguing story. If you're looking for edgy, unique New Adult, this may be a good fit.
Taking another step closer, he says to me, "I don't know what it is about you, but you're the type of girl I'd never date and the girl I so want to one day fall in love with all at the same time." ~eARC, 40%
Fitz is my art and I am the artist. Each touch is the stroke of a brush on a canvas, each kiss is the molding of a pot, each deep breath is the sight of something new and exciting. ~eARC, 40%
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