Dark #Romance Unexpected Obsession by Barbara Strickland Reviewed by Rosie.

Unexpected ObsessionUnexpected Obsession by Barbara Strickland

3.5 stars

Unexpected Obsession is a dark romance that borders on erotica and takes place in Italy and Australia.

Lia has come to Italy to persuade her relatives to re-evaluate their beliefs about past family events and to accept her in their lives once more. At first her presence is resented, but after months of hard work on Lia’s behalf, she wears down her Aunt Gina. However, getting Gina’s son Nico to change his dislike for her, is extremely difficult.

Nico is proud and passionate but he also needs to feel in control of everything in his life, to the point where his obsessions are often disturbing to read about. When they were younger Lia idolised Nico; now they use words to fight each other. I kept thinking about different beauty and the beast scenarios all mixed with sexual dominance and submission. Lia was so sure that she could ‘fix’ Nico with her love, but I wanted her to run far away.

I liked the story arc of Lia and Nico and the developments in their relationship and I can understand the idea of using their close family relationship as a feature to make the story interesting. However, I was really unconvinced with the dubious family connections and even by the end I barely grasped how the two were related.

There’s lots of angst and fairly explicit sex which you might expect from dark romance, with much of the tension and atmosphere created via anger and heated arguments. However, there are so many more emotions which can be used in fiction and I would have enjoyed a wider range.

I thought that there were missed opportunities to use deep point of view which might have created interesting layers to the characters; I wanted to empathise with them and really ‘feel’ part of their world.

Overall, there is a good story in between the pages, but it needs more work to bring out the star features and the real emotion that readers enjoy.

View all my reviews on Goodreads


Desc 1

Enthralled by the magic of Sicily, the splendour of the Mediterranean Sea and fuelled by a thirst for the family that has been denied to her, Lia fights to right a wrong even if it means going up against the formidable man, once a childhood hero. Feisty, intelligent and beautiful Lia is stronger than Nico realises, a worthy adversary that topples his comfortable world.
Resentful of Lia’s influence on his family, Nico makes life as difficult as he can for the stubborn woman on a mission. He wants her gone, back to Sydney where she belongs until one night when he sees her dance under an open sky and a fierce, forbidden hunger is unleashed. A man of high principles, Nico realises he needs to establish a safer relationship with her or be lost to desire. His efforts are undermined by unexpected events, and Nico faced with the possibility of making her his, cannot deny his beast the freedom to take her. It has seen her, been aroused by her fragrance and her skin, her fighting spirit and humour, and will not be denied the opportunity to keep her regardless of beliefs.
But Lia is more than her looks and soon she becomes an obsession. Nico has never let desire rule over common sense. His solution is destructive. Will Lia forgive his cruelty? Will he forgive Lia for her revenge?

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