Alice Close Your Eyes; Averil Dean
2013 - Harlequin/Mira
Vachon Island in Puget Sound is the setting for debut novel, Alice Close Your Eyes. It's classified as, "a cross between steamy exotic romance and spooky thriller" by Booklist, but I think readers need to be aware the the characters are really twisted and there is plenty of sexual violence in this book.
The novel opens with Alice Croft, a 21 year-old woman who has had a horrible childhood growing up within the foster care system. She's a woman with an intense hatred for one individual and bent on revenge for what she had had to live through. For 10 years she been been searching for just the right person to carry out her plan.
The story opens with Alice breaking into someone's house, this isn't a first for Alice. She enjoys snooping inside homes, looking for a box of sentimental objects that, according to Alice, all men keep. Her victim this time is Jack Calabrese. While doing her snooping, Jack returns home and catches Alice hiding inside of his closet, He is eager to find out who this woman is and what she wants, but for Alice, Jack is not exactly a stranger, she has been stalking him for some time now.
As the story continues the dark and dirt past of both Alice and Jack gets revealed, and Jack fulfills Alice's sexual addiction and what seems to be her need for physical abuse as well. This is one twisted story of obsessive love. The writing is decent, but the graphic details were very disturbing at times. While I'm sure there is probably an audience for this kind of story, the novel was too over the top for me to appreciate. One thing which just didn't seem believable to me was the fact that Alice was a successful YA author. Proceed with caution it you decide to try this one.