Apr 2, 2016

MTM Day 22: REVIEW of Yuri by Marian Tee

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To immediately follow up my last review in Marian Tee Mania, Kellion, I bring you my take on Yuri, the 7th installment in the Heart Racer series. 

I cannot tell you how excited I was when the author sent me an ARC of this book, because Yuri is one of my favorite characters in all of Marian's works. If you haven't yet read the other 6 parts of this series, there's a great chance you won't have any idea of who Yuri is. But if you've been following the journey of the Afxisi men, then you'd know how intriguing this reserved man is. 

In this review, you WILL have an idea of who Yuri is. Prepare yourself because there will be some spoilers, so if you're not into that, please do skip this one out.

Title: Yuri (Heart Racer #7) 
Author: Marian Tee
Publication Date: August 27, 2015
Published by: Jaded Speck Publishing
Source: ARC Given by the Author

Rating: 4 Stars

SYNOPSIS:
His name was Yuri Athanas.
They called him the golden boy of the Afxisi, a college org during the day and an underground racing club at night.

Like his brothers, Yuri was rich, powerful, gorgeous, and devastatingly sexy.

Unlike his brothers, Yuri did not leave a trail of broken hearts behind him.
Yuri was the angel amidst all the other Greek devils, they said.

I liked hearing that about him. It gave me hope that when we do meet again, he would remember his promise, and he would keep it.

He would take one look at me and he wouldn’t mind that I wasn’t…okay.

He wouldn’t mind I wasn’t…normal.

If he was everything I prayed he would be, he’d take one look at me and love me, like he had promised.

CHARACTER BACKGROUND:
Yuri is a considerate, caring, and well-mannered gentleman; he won't ever say bad things to you and will never purposefully offend anyone ... At least that's what he leads people to believe. Inside, he's cold-hearted, distanced, and in control. He never lets his real emotions show, and he only allows people to see what he wants them to see. But the biggest ass-move he probably did in life is to let a certain woman believe that he loves her, even though he's not really capable of that.

Kalliope knows not what love is or what it means. She was raised not to believe in it and to forget whatever emotion she can associate with it. Her upbringing is the definition of messed-up; physically abusive, emotionally draining, and mentally destructive. Now, she doesn't know what to feel or what those feelings mean--she's good at keeping people at a distance and being cold without even meaning so. But ubderneath all that lies a kind and loving heart, one that must be cherished forever. 

REVIEW:
I know the character description I presented above is quite lengthy--it goes to show just how fascinating and complex both Yuri and Kalliope are. 

With all of Marian's books, I don't think I know of one female lead who is naturally cold, distant, and insensitive from the get-go. Most female protagonists she create are lively, expressive, a bit timid but full of spunk--that's why I found Kalliope captivating; she's broken, obviously, and if I went through what she did, I'm sure I'll even come out worse. But in spite of being ripped of her identity, beaten repeatedly for having emotions, and losing [almost] everyone who cares about her, she's still determined to trust people. To give "living" and "feeling" a shot--which leads to her affection for Yuri. Yuri *sigh*, I had no idea he can be so ... Unfeeling. I mean, he was controlled and refined in other parts of the series, but NEVER a manipulator, a liar, and a user. I guess you can't really judge a character unless you're reading their story, eh? 

The story moved at a steady pace; it wasn't dragging and there weren't a lot of unnecessary scenes. I don't like novels with a lot of "fillers"--scenes that offer nothing in the books entirety--that takes up a number of pages, and I felt like the author avoided that which I appreciate and approve of. 

I can't really say much about the highs of this story, but the lows were VERY good. I share the author's masochistic/sadistic tendencies, and so I loved seeing both Yuri and Kalliope struggling and in pain because of their mistakes--and by "their", I mean Yuri. The love scenes didn't really standout and I'm bummed about it because I was expecting Yuri to be rough, demanding, and wild in the bedroom because he's so poise outside. But we all don't get everything we want, so...

SUMMARY:
I really did like this book a lot; there may have been a few things I wanted to see, but as a whole it's a well-written book for Yuri and Kalliope's love story.

Image from Goodreads

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