Review: His to Claim #1: No Strings by Opal Carew

Quick review for a quick read. This is the start to yet another serial novel that I’ve come across in the romance/erotica department and I have to say – for my first read of Opal Carew, this was rather good. The writing was tight, the characters were palpable. Only problem is that this story has backing on quite a bit of cliches, but I was able to forgive that because I liked both Melanie and Rafe enough to invest in their stories from this introduction.

Melanie is a woman who used to work in a corporate business, but left her job after her former boss Rafe started dating her best friend Jessica. Melanie not only saw it as a conflict of interest, but she was actually in love with him and didn’t think he returned the sentiment at all. This shocks the heck out of Rafe and the two meet in the beginning of the serial novel at Melanie’s new workplace. The story moves forward with some background on the characters, and while I’ve pretty much been almost burned out on the tattooed bad boy/singer/bossman/well-to-do love interest trope, Rafe really didn’t come across as too bad a guy, he has a likable personality. But he was kind of threadbare for the presentation in this first installment. I kept thinking it was difficult to really see his character past the constructed cliches and it was a bit too good to be true.

Melanie’s character was fine. I identified with her story since it was so individualized and tailored to her perspective points. Her interactions were natural and motivations/sentiments were clear. I think this is basically the set up to the scenario, and considering this is a serial novel, I’m willing to pick up the next part, but I do think it could have had a bit stronger hold past some of the cliched elements. It’s still a nice, short read though, and I’m glad I picked it up.

Overall score: 3/5 stars

Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher St. Martin’s Press.

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