Review:: Tempting Isabel by Rissa Brahm

In Tempting Isabel, Wedding planner Isabel Ruiz is cursed. Her hometown of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico agrees, considering her tragic track record. Alone and loveless, she creates fairy-tale weddings for others. Her only distraction? The occasional anonymous fling. So to avoid further tragedy, her rule, one–night–only, is never broken…

Until Zack.

Self-made millionaire Zack James is in town for his brother’s wedding, when a sudden spell of depression hits. Maybe burned out by his fast and luxurious lifestyle? Not even his two female companions hold any interest.

That is, until he meets Isabel.

She humbles and captivates him, reigniting his thirst for life. With her, Zack feels more alive than ever. To his delight—and her dismay—they share a deep bond, a sensual connection, and one mind-bending night.

Zack must have her – to complete him. And Isabel must escape him – to save him.

Their game of catch and chase leads to lust-turned-love. For Isabel, it’s fate’s cruelest joke. But Zack won’t quit, positive he’s the cure to her curse. Can he convince her to risk everything with him? Or will it all go south…in paradise.

I received a copy of this book from Jenny in Neverland as part of a Neverland Blog Tour, in exchange for an honest review.

I’m gonna be honest and say that I didn’t love this novel. While there isn’t anything inherently wrong with it, it just didn’t click for me.

There was a lot going on, and nothing got explained the way I really wanted it to be. What happened to Sebastian? Who decided that Isabel was cursed? Why did Amy dislike her family so much?  I felt like there were a lot of pieces missing.

My biggest issue with this book is that it felt like it could have been anywhere – the setting wasn’t really vital to the story except to mention Mexican prisons being horrible for prisoners, giving Zack a need to rescue Isabel from Roberto. A quick google search shows me that Puerto Vallarta, Mexico is absolutely stunning, yet we see almost no description of the area that the author herself lives in. I felt like I could have been in any beach town for the most time, and that’s really disappointing.

Zack kind of creeped me out. He kept coming after a girl who didn’t want to be with him, who kept telling him to stop asking her out, and to wait. I have concerns about the relationship, but in the end, it’s a whirlwind romance that turned out okay. However, this is an actual romance novel, so there are some steamy parts, and they’re well written. Don’t read this if those make you uncomfortable, but if you’re into some heterosexual sexy-times, go for it.

The first three books in this series have already been released, and if this sounds more like your thing, go for it. I’m rating this book three stars, because while the steamy scenes were well-written, the rest of the book didn’t really capture me the way it should have.

three stars

Her author bio says, “Rissa Brahm is a world traveler that currently resides in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Her experiences there are why she chose the very same city for the setting of her first novel. She and her loving family will be embarking upon a new adventure soon, which will undoubtedly inspire many more stories to come.”



2 thoughts on “Review:: Tempting Isabel by Rissa Brahm

  1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I appreciate when bloggers state up front that they did not enjoy the novel – we can’t like everything! 🙂 For me, the setting & location is vital for me imagining and visualizing the story. I think it would be hard for me to read this without a strong tie to Puerto Vallarta.

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