Book Review: Easy (Contours of the Heart #1) by Tammara Webber
If you open a newspaper these days, you will find half of it filled with stories of how various women have been abused. Someone is abused by an Uber driver, someone is being harassed by their family member or someone is being assaulted by strangers and colleagues. Everywhere, women are being sexually harassed left, right and center.
Exploring a similar theme, Tammara Webber came out with her New York Times Bestseller contemporary romance, Easy, in November 2012. With the #MeToo campaign going around social media, Easy is a very relevant read. This well-written book will teach you your self-worth, it will teach you the importance of self-defense, and more importantly it’ll teach you that you are not a victim, you are a survivor.
Easy tells the story of Jacqueline Wallace and Landon Lucas Maxfield. The book starts with Jacqueline leaving a Halloween frat party wherein, while getting into her car, she is assaulted by Buck, an acquaintance she thought was a decent human being. She is shocked by the assault and unable to get him off her, when comes Lucas to save her. Herein starts the story.
Rest of the story mostly deals with Jacqueline and Lucas’s relationship and how it grows. The one major complaint I have with this book is that Jacqueline adamantly refuses to go to the police when she is assaulted. Worse still, she refuses to report Buck even after he attacks her again in the stairwell of her dormitory. At this point, she decides to confide in her roommate and best friend Erin, who enrolls her in a self-defense class. This is the beginning of Jacqueline’s journey from being a helpless damsel to a strong, empowered woman.
Many readers would think Jacqueline is not a smart woman because she did not report Buck. But one can never know what a woman goes through after such a traumatic event. How difficult it can be for a her to accuse someone of a certain social standing of such a heinous crime. This is when Webber reassures the readers that the woman is NOT AT FAULT. Lucas and Erin stand by Jacqueline and assure her that she is not to be blamed for what happened to her. The blame lies solely with the man who assaulted her.
I love how Webber narrated the romantic aspect of Jacqueline and Lucas’s story. Their relationship grows slowly and is very passionate. You can feel the heat between the characters.
The book also has a certain sombre tone to it—a solemnity that many romance books lack. Every time I read this book, I am filled with a certain sense of serenity, a sense of contentedness. The prose is mostly flawless in this book.
The best part of Easy, apart from the slow-built romance, is how Erin and Lucas empower Jacqueline. Both of them, especially Lucas, give her the courage to fight and stand up for herself. Courage to live a guilt-free life with dignity. There is of course some fun banter between the lead couple and a hot, brooding beta-male like Lucas is a pull for most romance readers.
The author deals with the issue of sexual harassment in a very mature manner, without making it sleazy or insolent. She writes about it in a civil manner and makes it inspiring enough for many women. This is a book that I would like to recommend for its beautiful story and the message it puts across.