Crescendo (Collection Harlequin) (Harlequin Presents, #451)

Crescendo (Collection Harlequin) (Harlequin Presents, #451) - Charlotte Lamb Heroine feels a strange connection to the man Hero who’s renting a room at her grandfather’s cottage the last 2 days. Knowing that Hero and her grandfather are keeping their true association a mystery from her doesn’t stop her from spending as much time with him as she can. Hero awakens emotions in her and their intimacy deepens quickly. But will his secrets help or harm their growing relationship?

I love Lamb’s unpredictable writing. It makes for intriguing reading. I wasn’t sure if heroine was going to end up being a doormat or if she was going to get a backbone. I wasn’t sure what Hero’s real motives were with heroine until the end. Their sexual chemistry & sex scenes showed the complexity of their emotions. Even heroine’s relationship with her grandfather wasn’t straightforward. But halfway through the book the truth starts coming out & continues to unravel as Hero & heroine confront their issues.

----------------------SPOILERS: Don’t read if you don’t want to know the book’s details-----------------

I’m not sure if what Hero was doing with heroine in the present was groveling or continuing to satisfy his needs/wants. Their past r/s has been one where Hero takes & heroine silently gives. Heroine’s amnesia seemed like an opportunity for Hero to deceive her into softening up to him. And it worked. Heroine even mentioned it and confronted him on his self-centeredness. It made him stop his desperate declarations & confessions and made him truly think about his intentions. It just hit him that he had been very self-absorbed & was still doing so. His declarations & confession was all about him—his feelings, his pain, his needs--and he hadn’t thought of how his past actions affected heroine. Her catching him kissing his old girlfriend, her subsequent accident & miscarriage, and her amnesia stirred up major guilt & remorse for him. Although he waited 1 year to be in her life again, there was just something about how he asserted himself in her life that made it seemed self-serving. It was like he was stealing her forgiveness, her love while she couldn’t yet remember.

One good thing about Hero is that he was persistent, despite heroine’s repeated & clear rejection of him. He humbled himself by finally being vulnerable & honest with heroine. It looked like groveling but I again questioned his ultimate motives: was it for heroine’s sake or to relieve his guilty feelings? I think it was both but weighing heavier on Hero’s side. After all, it was only 1 day before that he realized that he hadn’t considered heroine’s feelings. Made me think.