11 Nov '11
Nix Review – Intimate Whispers by Dee Carney (3.5 Stars)
|Sabrina has always been haunted by the voices of the dead. Pleading for help and desperate to be heard, they often drown out reality and overwhelm her. Labelled schizophrenic by the hospital, and sectioned on numerous occasions, she was able to find no solace. That was until He came. He came to her at night and suppressed all the voices, asking for the use of her body in return. He is the entity that makes it all better for a while and can make sure that she feels nothing but pleasure from his visits; that is, if he wants to. When Sabrina meets Jason, her neighbour, everything threatens to change. She has gotten used to the status quo, gotten used to His visits and being alone. Jason wants to help, wants to be a part of her life. Desperate for closure for his brother’s death, he pushes his way into her life when he discovers her secret. Surprisingly, he finds that he wants to help the desperately troubled woman to try to find some peace. The chemistry between them is palpable on her lucid days, but what will he think of her when he finds out what she has to do to find peace?
I have trouble classifying this book. I class a romance as one where the majority of the plot is the love story and I’m not sure that this is the case here. Now, I don’t know if this because the ghost plot was so damn creepy, or it really was a 50:50 split between the plot strands, but I class this book as a horror with romantic elements. The horror story was goddamn horrible; it made me feel so wrong. The concept that someone would pay for something they truly need with sex isn’t a new one, but the fact that it was a ghost freaked me the hell out. She couldn’t see it but she could certainly feel it. The fact that she got pleasure from it/him didn’t appease me much, but I could deal. When I realised just how tightly the thing had her wrapped within its grasp I started to get a little uneasy. Then when it decided it was pissed at her and basically beat the crap out of her whilst taking what it wanted I felt really afraid for her. It was such a difficult choice for her; what price would she put on her sanity? Only sex with him would keep the voices away, but was it really worth it? It never raped her, because she had the option of saying no, but once she allowed it in, it did what it wanted. I didn’t like it, ‘twas creepy!
Jason was a lovely, lovely man. He was attracted to her from the offset, but, at first, he only wanted her for her connections to the dead. He was looking for confirmation that his brother Thad was dead and he asked for help. Once he started to spend time with her when she was completely lucid, he started to feel a spark. I honestly didn’t understand it; he had only known her for a short period of time and the majority of that she was pretty much out of it. She wasn’t particularly nice to him for the first quarter of the book, proclaiming his problems not be hers and refusing to help. I understood her reasoning, but I didn’t understand why this seemed to enhance his attraction. It was inexplicable to me but I went with it because I couldn’t deny that the author had crafted some fantastic chemistry. As much as he did care, I still wasn’t sure that he would be OK if she chose to continue sleeping with an entity whilst she was sleeping with him.
Sabrina was a troubled woman. Often completely overwhelmed by the voices, she has isolated herself from people so they can’t see the pain she’s in. I think that this is one of the reasons that she does push Jason away at the beginning because he has the potential to hurt her. She does care for him, which she proves time and time again by exposing herself to the negative side of ghosts for him, but I didn’t know if she cared for herself more than for him. To me, her test would be how she dealt with the voices when they came back. If she chose to continue sleeping with Him, and potentially hurt Jason, then I wasn’t sure that I wanted them to get together. However, I knew that she was in a viscous cycle and I wondered if she was strong enough to take a chance on love and risk everything she had struggled to achieve in her very lonely life. Oh, the tension……… 😀
Overall, this was a book which I enjoyed but which confused the hell out of me. I was expecting a straight up PNR, but what I got was a horror story with a love sub-plot. The theme was creepy but the love story was very real and very sexy. If you fancy something different, this may be the one for you