Wednesday, December 7, 2011

[Review]: "SEAL of My Dreams"

SEAL of My Dreams by Cindy Gerard AND Other Authors
Publisher: Bell Bridge Books (November 11, 2011)
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Summary (
True heroes who will win your heart. Honor, duty, courage, passion . . . the men of the Navy SEALs are a special breed of hero, and in these stories by eighteen top romance authors the SEALs are celebrated not only as symbols of devoted service to their country but as the kind of man every woman wants to love. They'll rescue a damsel in distress and her lap dog, too. They'll battle hometown dramas and international bad guys. When it comes to giving away their hearts, they'll risk everything. All proceeds from sales of SEAL of My Dreams goes to the Veterans Research Corporation, a non-profit fundraiser for veterans' medical research. Among them, the authors of SEAL of My Dreams have won dozens of writing awards including multiple RITAs from Romance Writers of America. Their nearly 600 published novels have sold at least 25 million copies worldwide. The SEAL of My Dreams roster includes many of the best-known authors in modern romance fiction. In addition, many have strong family connections to the servicemen and women of our nation's military, and many specialize in novels featuring heroes and heroines from all branches of service.

Where to Buy*: Amazon | Kindle | NOOK
More Info: Book Site

My Review:

SEAL of My Dreams is an anthology full of best-selling and well known contemporary romance authors, with the theme for every story being the brave Navy SEAL man and the woman he loves. The premise for both the anthology and the individual stories is very promising. However, the execution falls a bit short and leaves the reader wanting.

Even if it wasn't for the fact that this particular anthology has so many novellas inside of it, I couldn't give you a summary or review of each one even if I wanted to. They each seemed to blend into the next one. Just as I would start to get into the story and begin to enjoy it, I'd turn the page and suddenly it is the next story. So off I began again on another SEAL related adventure and then suddenly it's time for that one to abruptly end as well. I felt as if I was in some sort of class and every 15 minutes the instructor was yelling “Switch!”, at which point one story would disappear and I'd find the new one in front of me instead.

Yes, I understand that an anthology is merely a collection of short stories. And perhaps some would say I am wrong to base part of my review on the fact that everything was too short, but I've read many novellas and anthologies—I know the difference between a short story that is done so well the reader doesn't even feel that more story is needed and one where it reads more like an excerpt than anything else. This book, unfortunately, fell under the second category. Every story was too rushed—most of them, I felt, barely even had a storyline, and the others had great potential...until it was suddenly hacked off, almost mid-sentence it would seem.

It's pretty unfortunate when most of the stories in SEAL of My Dreams were literally forgettable for me. Many of them left my mind as soon as the next novella began, leaving no impression of memory of it behind. The others were forgotten not long after I read the final page of the book. It wasn't intentional, but rather it happened from lack of substance, and therefore each one blew away before I was even done with it. Shouldn't I have been left with something by the end? A favorite story or two, a few complaints about my least favorite ones—something? I should have been, but I wasn't.

However, this anthology did still do its job to attract new readers to authors they've never read before, give them a taste of what to expect. Despite not feeling satisfied and fulfilled by the end of it, I still wanted to read more novels by most, if not all, of these authors. The novellas that were part of an existing series went straight on my list, and the others made me want to look up the author's other books to see which ones sound like my kind of romance novel. I'll admit, I enjoyed reading about the SEALs, and I'll do so again in a heartbeat. In this, at least, the book succeeded.

Despite my desire for more substance to these novellas, many of them did have a lot of positive elements going for them. Almost every one of these stories made me want to cry, to grieve—for both the men in the story and the real men that do these things in the name of our country every day. Other stories had me on the edge of my seat, biting my nails during the dangerous missions. A few had me sighing at the tender moments in between all the courageous ones. One or two had me on fire from the passion and love, though non of them were particularly spicy and only a couple even had a real love scene (and those were very, very brief).

3 STARS! I would still recommend SEAL of My Dreams to every romance fan out there. Even though it wasn't perfect, and it wasn't my favorite book of all time, it still touched something inside of me. And more importantly, the book is benefiting a great cause, with all proceeds from it going to veteran medical research and other worthy causes for the brave men and women that serve our country. Buy this book, enjoy a taste of what these authors have to offer in their full-length novels, and help out a great cause while doing so-- what more could you ask for?

Thanks to NetGalley, where I received this book for free in exchange for reviewing the book. (Free book does not equal biased review, however!)


Until Next Time,
*TBQ's Book Palace is a member of both the Amazon and Barnes and Nobles affiliates program. By using the links provided to buy products from either website, I receive a very small percentage of the order. To read my full disclosure on the matter, please see this post!


Blodeuedd said...

I do want a bit more suspense in my romance, ok I do not need it but it would be fun to try :D

The_Book_Queen said...

Blodeuedd-- :D That's the spirit! Lol. I think you'd like it, and, like I said, the plus side is it all goes to a good cause!

Thanks for stopping by!