Invitation to Ruin by Bronwen Evans

March 21, 2011

Mr. Toad girth alert!

First of all, Invitation to Ruin is a trade size paperback, which means more money than normal paperbacks. Secondly, this book comes with a warning: there are some very disturbing scenes throughout this book. I would categorize this book as a Romantica/Erotica...low on the Romance, high on the Tica.

When I purchased this book, I thought it sounded interesting...a marriage of convenience story, one of my favorite scenarios. However, it didn't take long to discover that this wasn't going to be a pleasant read. This book had the feel of a short story, with a distasteful hero (Anthony) and an unemotional heroine (Melissa). Let the spoilers begin. Our heroine: I would think that if a man slithered his way into my bed and while I was sleeping stole my innocents with his gigantic Mr. Toad, I'd be screaming my head off. Nah...not here. She has almost no reaction except, maybe a little disgruntled, she was dreaming of him after all, so she probably asked for it.

Then there is the so called hero. What a piece of work. I do not like heroes who say one thing and do another. Oh, I don't mind the out of control jealous rakes, the ones that fall hard and don't know what to do about it. Read some very fine books with this theme. But this guy would make promises such as he would never hurt her, then precede to announce at the wedding party, in front of a group of people that he was going out for the evening...and not bothering to hide where he was going. And then we have the continual Rottweiler with a Bone Syndrome. (I use Rottweiler, because it doesn't work with a Lab.) Here is how this syndrome works, he is not going to be faithful to her and he tells her so, however, he expects her to be faithful to him, even though he is never going to have sex with her... b-e-c-a-u-s-e he's afraid he will have crazy children, b-e-c-a-u-s-e his father had a crazy dark side...come to the dark side Anthony...I, he expects her to be faithful to him and he tells her this over and over and over again. But, just let any other man so much as look at her and the accusations fly. This woman, who up to a few days ago was an innocent is having an affair; with his brother, a previous suitor, his best friend, the villain...oh, anyone. This is usually followed by stomping out of the room and then guilt. This happens numerous times. Sigh. What a creep. He also is endowed with a gigantic Timothy Toad, which the heroine has trouble getting her hand around; either she has tiny weensy hands or he's humongous...either way something went terribly wrong at the factory. I am troubled by visions of tiny hands.

And now my favorite people in the book, the e-e-v-v-i-l villains. Yes folks, two, three if you count the heroines disgusting brother. How do we know that these two people are the bad guys and not the hero and heroine in disguise? Well, for one thing the bad e-v-i-l woman uses a whip and likes to bite Mr. Toads, and the bad e-v-i-l man has a Mr. Toad just waiting to be bit. "Take me, suck me, bite me." Groan (and not the good kind.)

Sadly to say, this book was just not my cup of tea.

Time/Place: Regency England
Sensuality Rating: Scorcher!!


Kayanna Kirby said...

I'm sorry you didn't like the book, but that review made me laugh.

SidneyKay said...

Kayanna...I wanted to like the book.

Tracy said...

I know I say I love your reviews all the time but I truly do. I probably wouldn't have picked this book up anyway, but I'm thinking that your review clinched that decision for me.

I like more romance and less tica, as well. lol

Anonymous said...

Not very well written, either.

SidneyKay said...

Tracy...I'm always on the lookout for a new author, I always have such high hopes when I open those books. Sigh.

Anonymous Dick: Howdy! Welcome

Anonymous said...

I read the first few pages of this book and I'd had enough when I got to the fact that the characters were named Goodly and Wicked. duh...Do publishers think readers have become so stupid we need to have this spelled out? Glad I didn't buy it. It sounds insipid. I can't believe it was published, but she got a 3 book deal, so there are two more coming. Ugh!

SidneyKay said...

Anony: The names made me groan also.

Melanie said...

Hello Kay,

Reading this review I feel so much better. Unlike some of the commenter’s, I bought the book for the reason you said: always giving a chance to new authors. I was so disappointed with this author and I'll not buy her books, nor waste my time reading her work. I've read the book back in March and here's what I thought of it:

BTW: Love reading your blog. We seem to be reading same books lately. Just finished Lecia's this weekend, and bought today Margo Maguire’s one, and I'll return it t'rrow. I'm not going to bother. I did read S. Sloan's new one (ARC) and I really loved it.

'till next time :-))


SidneyKay said...

Melanie: Is that Stephanie Sloane? Debut author who appears to have a three book deal. I quickly did a search and found her...I will be adding her to my next list of upcoming. Thanks for the heads up. And thanks for enjoying my blog.

Melanie said...


Yes, It's her. I think you'll like her. BTW: Have you ever read Leigh Michaels? I just got done with "One Season in London" and the book was awesome. A bit different from what I'm used to in that it's told from 6 POV's and it was so much fun to watch 1 incident with 6 different views. Just loved it. See if you can get your hands on it. I had it sent to me from Sourcebooks. If you don't have their #, let me know and I'll send it to you. I also found out she has 3 more coming up in the next few months, trilogy and I can't wait :-)
R U on FB? And if you are we need to find you there....


SidneyKay said...

Melanie: I've not read any Leigh Michaels, many because she's a contemporary. However, I see that the one in February was historical and One Season in London is historical. So, I think I'll take a look at The Mistress's House and see what I think of her writing. If I like it I'll probably put One Season on my list, sounds interesting. It will be pretty easy to get a copy, since I work in a library...just a little walk down the hall. Thanks for the heads up.

No...I've never activated my facebook, at this point I don't plan on it...maybe someday.