Review: Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

I received this book for free from Edelweiss/Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth PhillipsHeroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Published by William Morrow on 08/26/2014
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss/Publisher

The dead of winter.

An isolated island off the coast of Maine.

A man.

A woman.

A sinister house looming over the sea ...

He's a reclusive writer whose macabre imagination creates chilling horror novels. She's a down-on-her-luck actress reduced to staging kids' puppet shows. He knows a dozen ways to kill with his bare hands. She knows a dozen ways to kill with laughs.

But she's not laughing now. When she was a teenager, he terrified her. Now they're trapped together on a snowy island off the coast of Maine. Is he the villain she remembers or has he changed? Her head says no. Her heart says yes.

It's going to be a long, hot winter.

The last few months I’ve read quite a few Susan Elizabeth Phillips books – Match Me If You Can, Natural Born Charmer, Heaven Texas and It Had to Be You.  I really enjoyed all those, however I disliked Nobody’s Baby But Mine and I couldn’t finish that one.  But even with that one book I disliked, when I saw Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips on Edelweiss I immediately requested it, and did a mental happy dance when I was approved for it.  Heroes Are My Weakness was an interesting read, but unfortunately I wasn’t madly in love.

Heroes Are My Weakness has a vastly different feel from my favorite Phillips’ books (Match Me if You Can, Natural Born Charmer), which isn’t a bad thing at all, except that what I look for in a Phillips’ book wasn’t there in Heroes Are My Weakness.  This book has almost a gothic feel, with sort of a haunting atmosphere with regards to the big house on the island.  It’s not that I minded that more gothic feel, exactly, but I wanted a more lighter funnier book.

The main character in Heroes Are My Weakness, Annie, is definitely down on her luck.  She’s just spent the last few months taking care of her dying mother, and she’s used up all her savings.  Her mother leaves her house to Annie, on this lonely island in Maine, where Annie spent some summers.  She doesn’t really have the best  memories from this place, largely due to Theo (a boy who also spent summers on the island).

I really wanted to like Annie, but seriously she just got on my nerves.  She’s a puppeteer, and she has these puppets.  And whenever she’s not sure what to do, she has these conversations with the puppets based on their established personalities.  This gets seriously annoying, and really silly after awhile.  Talk about eye-roll-worthy.

As for the romance – I just wasn’t feeling it that much.  Annie has all these TERRIBLE memories of things that Theo did to her when they were young teens, and yet she is also attracted to him in present day.  I just couldn’t understand why.  I mean, I liked Theo, too.  You can tell there is a lot more to the story, but I couldn’t understand why Annie was attracted to him with all these memories she’s got.

Of course, I was still rooting for Annie and Theo to get together, so I don’t know what that says about me.  I guess the romance isn’t terrible, but I just couldn’t rationalize Annie’s actions based on her past experiences with Theo.  And her beliefs about Theo when she runs into him on the Island for the first time.

The writing and pacing of this book is really good, and I can find no fault with it.  It almost has a slightly creepy feel, but it’s not really scary.  If I wasn’t frustrated with Annie so much, I wouldn’t have been able to put the book down.

I really wanted to love Heroes Are My Weakness, but it just wasn’t so.  It’s not a bad book, and I think a lot of my issues have to do personal preferences, and also what I was expecting based on SEP’s other books.  If you like a more gothic-y romance, I think you might enjoy Heroes Are My Weakness.  It just wasn’t what I was looking for.


5 Responses to “Review: Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips”

  1. Camille @ Girl meets Books

    I kind of get what you mean. My review will go live in maybe 40 minutes but what I kind of enjoyed this one because it’s darker than other SEP books and I’m glad that she took this risk to expand her writing. I actually love Annie and her puppets. They broke my heart sometimes. Thanks for the review Quinn. 🙂

  2. kimbacaffeinate

    Quinn, the darker aspect has me curious as does the house on the island. I haven’t tried this author and I am sorry it wasn’t for you, but you might have sold me on it..LOL

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