REVIEW: The Object of Love by Sharon Cullars
Dear Ms. Cullars:
The Object of Love turned out to be a big surprise for me. The past Bravas I’ve read have been fun but without a great deal of depth. This book had a lot of depth that drew on more than its unconventional romance. The story has a romance but its primarily about learning to live with oneself and one’s choices in the face of the consequences. When the book focused on Lacey, Calvin, and Sean, individually, the book was at its most interesting. It was the romance, ironically, that I found least emotional.
Lacey Burnham has suffered the worst blow that a mother can endure–the loss of her child. Calvin Burnham was a bright star at Columbia whose athletic skill made him a sure bet to get to the big leagues. Unfortunately, his penchant for recklessness resulted in a high speed collision which ended his life. At the funeral, Sean Logan, Calvin’s estranged best friend appears to lend support to Lacey. Sean has long had feelings for Lacey and, while this may not be the best moment for revealing those, he can’t help his emotional response to Lacey’s need.
Lacey is lonely and grief stricken. While a relationship is unwise at best, she feels drawn to this beautiful young man who was a mainstay in her home until her son Calvin and Sean had a falling out.
Calvin is distraught over this. He finds himself in his mother’s home after his death, haunting her. He is enraged to find Sean in his home, romancing his mother. The reason is cleverly disguised and the source of the conflict turned out to be a big shock.
When I first encountered Calvin, I was a bit worried that this was going to be some hokey paranormal. But Calvin and his haunting turned out to be one of the most suspenseful and emotional parts of the book. Calvin knew he hadn’t always lived a good life. He was sometimes selfish and cruel and feared that whatever was pulling at him was not a glorious and endless peace. As he explores his afterlife as a ghost, he learns that strong emotions can render a corporeal response. His hauntings are fierce and driven by anger and Lacey is at a loss as to what to do. This part of the book was gripping.
Lacey was a survivor. She survived her husband’s death, her son’s death. She copes with her loss, her loneliness and her future. She is surprised by the sexual awakening that is brought about by Sean’s pursuit and reluctantly allows herself to be seduced. Lacey was a wonderful heroine. I appreciated the use of sex in this story to serve as a source of therapy for her. She deserved to be happy and if she found it in a younger man’s arms, so be it.
Unfortunately, the romance was lacking. Sean never appeared to be a mature young man. Sexy. Good in bed. But not really HEA material. He needed to grow up and be responsible if I was going to believe in the May/December romance otherwise it was just going to have kind of a creepy mother/son vibe and poor Lacey did not need to be mothering again. She needed an equal. She was strong, hot, successful and deserved at least a strong and hot man by her side. Sean was hot but I never bought into his strength of character. B-