“Forbidden Fruit” is a novella by Ann Aguirre that tells the story of Shannon, a young woman who can speak with the dead and has lost her memories. She ends up in the protective custody of one Jesse Saldana, an officer who helps her along her journey and protects her when danger comes knocking at her door, and there’s quite a few encounters to be had in this story.
It may be that I’m coming into this story with no knowledge of the characters or respective series, but I thought this was only okay. The instalove factor is heavy and I’ll admit I wasn’t convinced of the attraction between these two characters or the overarching stakes of this brief read. I thought Shan’s (Shannon) character was brash and overbearing, and while I like assertive characters who have witty banter and dialogue within supernatural circumstances, I thought Shan’s character was forced and overmuch. Jesse’s character was okay, and I liked some of his one-liners, but it wasn’t enough to vet out the situation even in this brief read. I thought Shan acted clueless in her encounters far too easily, and it made her character non-endearing for things that she should’ve recognized were bad ideas or odd things to say in the heat of the moment, especially when she was in peril.
It wasn’t my cuppa reading, and I’ve read better novellas from Aguirre (“Thistle and Thorn” from the “Til’ The World Ends” anthology being one), but I wouldn’t be opposed out of curiosity just to see what series this is from, and maybe have better luck in the reads there.
Overall score: 2/5
Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher.