Title: “Cover To Covers”
Author: Alexandrea Weis
Genre: Contemporary Romance
A man driven by his desires.
Tyler Moore is considered cold, ruthless, and determined to get everything he wants. CEO of a flourishing oil company, he thrives on order and never gives up control to anyone.
The woman from his past.
Monique Delome has left her unhappy past behind to pursue her dream of becoming a writer. Love is something she believes is better suited to the pages of her novels and not meant for real life.
Whether in the boardroom or the bedroom, Tyler Moore is always in charge. But when Monique Delome walks back into his life, everything changes. A successful romance author, all the sexy leading men Monique writes about strangely remind everyone of Tyler. Intrigued, Tyler sets out to seduce the one woman he could never forget. Soon Tyler gets more than he bargained for, and his grip on his well-ordered life is turned upside down.
Tyler Moore is about to find out what happens when a romantic tale jumps from the pages and comes to life between the sheets.
ARC received by the author in exchange for an honest review
When I first began reading this book, I was in for a bit of a surprise because it turns out that it is slightly different from what I usually read. Please do not get ahead of yourself and stop reading. Is it a romance novel? Yes. Filled with drama, heartbreak, passion and laughter? Yes. But the difference lies in the fact that the main couple is rather mature, and I am not quite used to that. Nevertheless, I found it to be very refreshing and at no point did it make me not want to keep reading, so please do not let it dissuade you from buying the book.
I will not go into too many details about the storyline, though, as the synopsis says so much about it already, so please allow me to be a bit vague from time to time.
Meet Tyler Moore: suave, hardworking, oil tycoon who has two failed marriages behind him. He has just celebrated his 50th birthday but that certainly does not stop him from acting more like he was still thirty in regards to the opposite sex. He spends a lot of his time in meetings, and engaging in casual sex is all he wants. But when he runs into an old girlfriend – Monique – his clearly defined world is tipped on its axis.
“She had happened so long ago, but he found it funny how advancing age only seemed to make the memories of youth more poignant. It was as if growing older brought into focus the emotions that the impetuosity of youth seemed to blur.” (Tyler)
He reflects on their past, wondering if he was in the wrong twenty years ago, and when he finds out that the heroes she writes about in her romance novels all are based on him, he knows that she is still thinking about him and he wants to try to pick up where they left off.
Monique lives in New Orleans, and she leads a quiet life while writing her books. At first, she is very reluctant to let Tyler back into her life, but she decides to give him a chance eventually. And having a former boyfriend turn up at your doorstep, determined to wear you down – one you still have feelings for – would probably make most of us willing to try again.
I very much enjoyed getting to know Tyler, and the fact that the story is told solely from his point of view had me riveted to the pages. I found Tyler to be a rather arrogant man – and some of the things he said definitely had me shaking my head once or twice – but he is a very likeable character at the same time. Like so many others, he is defined and ruled by his past and the disappearance of his older brother, Peter, when he was just a child, plays a big part in how he has led his life so far. I could not help but care for Tyler and hoping that he would see that in order to move on with Monique, it would be imperative that he changed his ways.
One of the things I admire about Monique is the fact that she does not let Tyler get away with anything. She is brutally honest, strong-willed and independent. She, too, has a failed marriage behind her, but even though it scarred her, making her vulnerable for a while, she found her way back to herself and she chose to not let a man dictate her dreams ever again. That kind of determination deserves a great deal of respect in my opinion. Also, I found her reluctance to start anything with Tyler again quite understandable, given their past and how he made her feel from time to time.
“Showing me isn’t telling me how you feel, Ty. It was always this way before. You would claim to show me how you felt, but never once did you ever say how you felt.” (Monique)
Most of this story takes place in New Orleans, and I confess that I now really want to visit this city one day. Miss Weis knows her city very well, and that definitely comes across in the book. Her writing style reels you in, and her descriptions of both places and people feel so life-like, it is as if you are experiencing everything yourself. That is the sign of a great story-teller in my eyes, and I was actually a bit sad when the story ended. I would also like to stress that the flow of the story is perfect – it never feels rushed or farfetched to me. Everything these characters felt, I felt as well.
Both Tyler and Monique have to learn letting go of the past and give up on the preconceived notions they harbor towards each other. What I feel is one of the most important themes of the story is that you are never too old to go after the things you want, that it is never too late to change if you do not like the direction your life has taken. And I find this to be very uplifting, actually. This is, in my opinion, mostly Tyler’s story: family secrets will be revealed, drama ensues and his fears of losing control will have to come to an end. Trusting in Monique is absolute key, and I confess that I found myself a bit worried if a man of his age was able to acknowledge his past mistakes and learn to compromise.
“…I was terrified of how much I needed you…of how much I love you. I will do whatever it takes to hold on to you. Like I told you before, I would rather fail a thousand times with you than never take the chance.” (Tyler)
To sum up: if you are looking for a great romance that is slightly different from what you are used to, I definitely recommend that you buy this book. Like I said in the beginning of this review, it has everything that you could wish for in a romance novel: heartbreak, laughter, tears, passion…Oh, and an ugly mongrel called Bart *wink*. I will certainly pick up other books the author has written so far, and this book is now on the list of my favourite books of all time.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Alexandrea Weis is an advanced practice registered nurse who was born and raised in New Orleans. Her first novel, To My Senses, introduced readers to the world of Nicci Beauvoir and garnered numerous awards and rave reviews. Her popular second Nicci Beauvoir novel, Recovery, won the Gold Medal for best romantic suspense from The Reader’s Favorite Book Awards 2011, and was named best Romantic Suspense novel by the Spring 2011 NABE Pinnacle Book Awards. Her fourth novel, Broken Wings, won best Contemporary Romance by the NABE Pinnacle Book Awards in 2012, was a Silver Medal winner in the ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards for Romance, as well as a finalist in the Reader’s Favorite Book Awards for Contemporary Romance for 2012. Her last novel, Acadian Waltz received honorable mention at the Readers’ Favorite Book Awards for Best Contemporary Romance and a Gold Medal at the Feather Quill Book Awards Program for Romance. A permitted wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, Weis rescues orphaned and injured wildlife. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans