I have enjoyed Melissa Foster's books in general, some more and some less but entertaining they all are. When I heard about this one, Claimed by Love, I was eager to read it. The blurb is interesting and instantly intrigued me.
As is common with Foster's books, in this book too there is a strong family element, a headstrong heroine and a charming albeit alpha hero. I enjoyed Gabriella's passion for her island which is her home and her determination to save it from getting sold and in turn, save its authenticity at all costs.
The island is beautifully sketched. I could visualize the small, quaint and cozy island away from the chaos of the city with its serene surroundings which made me want to visit it someday.
Although there is attraction between Gabriella and Duke, they both are fighting it so as to keep pleasure and business separate. While I like attraction at first glance, I just don't like it when men form the basis of their attraction to be just the body and make it look like lust which happened here with Duke. It kind of made me uncomfortable and definitely not charmed towards him. However, after some chapters as his character developed more, I could understand him better but still the first impression was not good.
Gabriella's family is boisterous, meddling and hopeless romantics. They fight a lot but despite all their heated altercations, they are devoted to each other and it was easy to see how much they loved each other. I got confused with their names because it seemed like all the males were named Niko which had me wondering who was who!
The story is straightforward but executed beautifully. There is passion, emotion, a little family drama and some blatant matchmaking efforts that had me laughing and enjoying.
The lack of conflict in the story does make a bit slow and had me feeling bored around the middle but then the author picks up pace and wrapped the story in a lovely finish.
Despite being part of a series, this book can be read as a standalone.
All in all, Claimed by Love is a straightforward and sweet romantic story with little drama that is a quick read. 3.5 out of 5 to it and recommended to all romance lovers.
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