Review: Trust

Trust (Finding Anna, #4)Trust by Sherri Hayes

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


The lovely conclusion to a whirlwind rescue showcases a broken Brianna and a persecuted Stephen.  This title is perfect for this book.  The theme is all about trust.  Who do you trust?  How does one learn to trust again after a horrific event leaving a person scarred for life?  Brianna must now grow a pair to face her sadistic torturer.  Since she's not capable of functioning without Stephan holding her hand, this is going to be difficult.

I'll be honest; this book is not for me.  I like the author a lot and it's interesting to see how she portrays BDSM in these stories.  This is why I read the book.  The BDSM is very light.  The amount of hatred against BDSM in all four books is a bit overwhelming.  It leaves a reader in the lifestyle feeling as if a shower is needed to cleanse oneself of all the mudslinging.  Ms. Hayes spends a good amount of time portraying how those in the lifestyle are judged and discriminated against.  The number of characters against the BDSM lifestyle and their actions at times overpowers the essence of this story.  The real story is about Stephan and Brianna's budding love and building of trust.  This is undercut frequently by spiteful characters. 

The extremes in behaviour from many of these characters, Cal, Stephan and Brianna illustrate how young each of them are in the story.  Cal is a bit of a paradox in the sense where he is very mature for his age and takes on a lot of responsibility yet his emotional responses tend to be exaggerated.  While many females may coo over his protectiveness.  And many may sigh with love regarding Cal 's protectiveness, as an independent woman, I find them to be overbearing and patronizing.  Stephan is definitely less patronizing than Cal .  He at least listens.  Cal is roughly 2 to 3 years older than Brianna.  At the age of 21 or 22, he seems to think he knows it all.  Ms. Hayes captures him perfectly for a child of this age thinking they know everything and trying to force everyone into their idea of what is right and wrong.  I knew that age quite well and I'm glad I've grown up and learned better.  What I liked about these two males is how Brianna finally speaks up.  What Cal does to her is basically disrespecting her choices.  Once again, her power is being stolen from her and he doesn't ever fully realize this.  His intentions are good; he just doesn't realize he's part of the problem.

Brianna in this story still doesn't impress me much.  I need to keep reminding myself she is only 19 years old and lived a completely sheltered life.  It is easy to see why everyone wants to make decisions for her because she behaves as a child of 3 or 4.  She is nearly catatonic.  While it works for this story where Stephan's brand of D/s helps heal her, in reality, don't try this at home.  BDSM as a method to heal mental issues is rare.  It doesn't address the root of the problem even if it may help to alleviate the symptoms. 

One of the main reasons why I have difficulty with this story is why Stephan goes to such great length to help Brianna.  He commends her to be strong and courageous.  Our definitions of these two words do not coincide.  I see a weak, dependent, scared little girl.  Her one outstanding skill is her ability to cook.  She is more high maintenance than I'd ever want to deal with.  My lack of love for Brianna aside, the relationship dynamic between Stephan and Brianna is quite sweet.

My favourite interaction between the two lovers is how they calm each other down.  Ms. Hayes does a wonderful job using vivid imagery and incorporating several of the senses to show how two people can merge to be the missing pieces for each other.   I loved it.  It makes me yearn for this kind of connection. 

Overall, this is a smoothly written story as to be expected by Ms. Hayes.  The characters are consistent with the first three books in this series.  The conclusion is satisfying even if it is a bit too easily resolved.  Recommended for New Adult readers who enjoy a star crossed lovers theme.

*provided by NetGalley



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