Read with: Amazon Kindle
Publisher: Lyrical Press Inc.
Hero: Michael Vartanian
Heroine: Valerie Mercer
Date of Publication: August 2, 2010
Started On: May 18, 2011
Finished On: May 18, 2011
I didn’t know what to expect when I delved into Coercion by Lux Zakari but I have got to say that it certainly held my undivided attention throughout which had me going from the start to finish in one sitting, just taking a timeout for toilet breaks in between. I was utterly riveted and fascinated with everything that was going on and for the world of me I couldn’t have dragged myself away from the story that unfolded.
I have a hard time defining Coercion as a romance because simply put, this is not a romance novel. But, Coercion is a story that combines the power of love, the ability of mind numbing lust to obliterate everything else and the lengths to which humans would go to possess the ones that they love.
Valerie Mercer is an only child and an introverted and insecure one at that who in her aim to change her life for the better sheds 25 pounds and emerges with a new look just in time for the start of the new semester. Though guys who have never noticed her before seems to be doing the total opposite, the only guy that Valerie wants to be noticed by is the one and only Michael Vartanian, the proverbial bad-boy of Kenton.
Michael is the only son of a Reverend, whose mother just one day upped and left and never returned. Michael doesn’t seem to care about anything in his life apart from being with his on and off girl friend Kim Breza (Breeze) and getting his kicks from indulging in the forbidden.
When circumstances at first drives Michael to seek Valerie, she is more than willing to be driven out of her senses right up against her mother’s car. And though Michael has no intention of returning any of what Valerie so obviously feels for him, time and time again Michael seeks her out, and makes use of her only to discard her once the deed is done. There is nothing on Earth that Valerie wouldn’t do to keep Michael by her side, to earn his love and approval, even if it means going against each and every belief that she has upheld till now.
In the end, there is no happily ever after for either of them, but nevertheless it was a fitting end to the volatile stream of emotions that this novel seems to be able to invoke in abundance, leaving a bittersweet tang in the air, which had me wistfully wishing for a novel that would portray the new Michael that would emerge from what follows the conclusion of this story.
Coercion is a novel that delivers well in the angst department, drawing me in until I was as helplessly ensnared in the story as Valerie seems to be with Michael. Michael is a hero not many readers would be willing to take. But I applaud Lux Zakari for having the guts to come out and write such a hero and send out a huge thank you to Lyrical Press for publishing this novel as it is. Because whilst happily ever afters and rosy kisses at the end are all well and good, Coercion is a novel that rings true to real life in so many ways which makes this book all that much better.
Whilst Michael makes you want to sit back in horrified fascination it is Valerie that you want to shake up well and good to make her see that it is Valerie that gives Michael the ability to screw up her life in more ways than one. In the end, Coercion does leave one with the valuable lesson that in order to be loved for who you are, you need to love yourself for who you are – all that more.
I loved this utterly fascinating piece of work and would recommend this highly to readers who want something a LOT more different than the usual romance novels that your erotica generally delivers. This ones made of much more and if you are a reader like myself this one would leave you definitely wanting more of Michael, no matter how unlikely it may seem. And that is a testament to Lux Zakari’s ability to spin a well rounded tale which certainly lands her in my list of authors to look out for in the future.