From #1 New York Times bestselling author Sylvia Day comes the first novel in the Crossfire series - a provocative masterstroke of abandon and obsession that redefined the meaning of desire, and became a global phenomenon.
Gideon Cross came into my life like lightning in the darkness...
He was beautiful and brilliant, jagged and white-hot. I was drawn to him as I’d never been to anything or anyone in my life. I craved his touch like a drug, even knowing it would weaken me. I was flawed and damaged, and he opened those cracks in me so easily...
Gideon knew. He had demons of his own. And we would become the mirrors that reflected each other’s most private wounds...and desires.
The bonds of his love transformed me, even as I prayed that the torment of our pasts didn’t tear us apart...
Elements of Fifty Shades...but divergent
It's true that there are several elements that are almost identical to Fifty Shades of Grey... especially at the beginning. We've got a gorgeous wealthy man, under 30 who owns his own empire and has a dark past the manifests itself in some unusual or unexpected behaviors when it comes to relationships, dating and sex. A young woman, fresh out of college literally stumbles in to his arms in his office. Young woman has issues of her own and is hung up on a woman in the man's past. They have a lot of sex, fall in love in a short amount of time and are essentially quite dysfunctional. But I'm not really buying the comparisons beyond that. I think Sylvia Day has taken parts of the Fifty Shades formula and crafted a much better story. It is certainly better written than Fifty Shades of Grey, that's for sure! In this book, she's laid the groundwork for a much more complex story with much better character development. The next installment comes out in October 2012 and I will be getting it because I want to see what happens to these characters. The author leaves us at a point of mild resolution, but with plenty of unanswered questions - especially with what I assume to be pivotal characters and situations introduced quite late, even right near the end.
One thing with this book is that the sexual dialogue is much cruder and porn-like that found in Fifty Shades. That's really the only thing about this story that turned me off. Personally, I felt that the sex scenes in Fifty Shades were "hotter" with slightly more general language, though the sex scenes were more believable (despite their salty descriptions) in Bared to You. I think that's an individual preference, though. I just tend to object to the use of the “c” word(s) and other similar language – to me it’s no longer romantic, but crass. I get that this is erotica…but I think this goes past “mommy porn” where imagination of the reader/listener is important into something a bit more extreme. While I didn’t like it, I was able to look past it enough to get in to the story.
If you're looking for the BDSM-lite content that is so prevalent in Fifty Shades, though, you really won't see it in this first book of the series. There are some hints of it and even some discussion of it between the main characters... but nothing but "vanilla" sex actually occurs. I suspect that later books in the series may focus on this more as the story progresses. There is some description of gay sex and group sex in this book (albeit briefly and not the main characters), and several gay/bi-sexual characters.
Honestly, I don’t think that this is an automatic sell to fans of Fifty Shades of Grey. In fact, I think some may not like it at all. Bared to You has far better character development and better writing but it’s also more porn-like with the explicit language. If that kind of language bothers you, you may not like this story.
As for the audiobook version? The narrator’s version of Gideon’s voice is a pretty painful. Gideon Cross is supposed to have a deep, sexy baritone voice. I know it’s difficult for a woman to properly act that out, but she makes Gideon sound like a creepy old man on oxygen. Personally, I eventually got used to it, but it still sounded totally wrong. Definitely be careful who is around when you listen to this, because she acts out the scenes in a way that sound like you’re watching an adult movie. For those that get upset that this is a rip-off of Fifty Shades... remember that Fifty Shades of Grey is Twilight Fanfiction that was originally written to be a story with Edward and Bella, then reworked. Bared to You is original romance/erotica. They both follow a typical romantic formula, though, found in the erotic romance market... and while there are a lot of Fifty Shades comparisons, there are easily 20+ other novels have the same type of plot. Fifty Shades of Grey is not all that original or even well written... and I think Bared to You may be the author's answer to that in order to gain new readers to the genre by using the formula. That’s why they have so many similarities.
Not a Fifty shades of Grey wanna be
I read all the 50 shades books( which I loved) and although they are similar this story is soooo much better, mature and realistic.
I can't wait to read the second book and be in love with a man who really gets me,wants to know me, and truly loves me.
Highly recommend Sylvia Day
I read the 50 Shades trilogy but this is soooo much better. Mainly because Day has more experience with character development and Gideon and Eva just seemed so much more 3 dimensional. Plus I liked the fact that there's not a lot of BDSM. Pure lust and straight up love scenes that are memorable. Can't wait for the next book!