How I got this book: NetGalley
I loved the first book, but was so pissed about the way it ended, so the minute I had the second one available, I devoured it. Sadly, it didn’t have the same wow factor that the first book had.
Jonah and Vivienne spent the first book living on the edge, playing out their rape fantasies with one another, and slowly falling in love. It was intense and sexually-driven, but the tender moments between these two made the first book something special. When they broke up at the very end of the first book, it was heartbreaking and a little sudden.
In this second installment, they are fighting their desire to be together, as it is emotionally taxing for both of them. Jonah is hesitant to be with Vivienne that way, and Vivienne is miserable without Jonah in her life. But they are so drawn to each other that they are willing to work at making a relationship last. With a serial rapist on the loose, Jonah and Vivienne will have to navigate muddy waters in order to come out on the other side, together.
While I enjoyed the resolution to Jonah and Vivienne’s story, this book just didn’t pack the same kind of emotional punch that the first did, and I was really disappointed because of it. There were things that Pace didn’t fully address in this book that I would have liked to see resolved more, especially as it related to Vivienne’s family.
The serial rapist plotline was done really well, IMO. Especially when it came to Jonah having to deal with the fallout of being accused. I loved that Vivienne was willing to stand by his side through thick and thin, and that she wanted to drop everything to take care of him. It showed an incredible amount of growth for her, since she was originally only interested in pursuing a sexual relationship with Jonah. I loved seeing her meet his family, and bond with his brothers and sisters. It was one aspect of the story I wasn’t expecting, but loved reading.
The romance between these two ended in a way that I found to be satisfactory. I liked that they both continued t go to counseling, and that they were willing to work out their problems, issues, and concerns with their fantasy lifestyle. However, in some ways, I felt like Pace had an underlying message that all rape fantasies need to be “healed” in some way, and that didn’t sit right with me. That sad, I liked that Vivienne was able to breakthrough the mold of her past and move on.
All in all, I wasn’t nearly as impressed with the conclusion story of Jonah and Vivienne. This book really lacked the emotional intensity of the first book, and in some ways I didn’t feel as connected to the book because of it.
I give Begging For It a C+