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Eyes Wide Open (The Blackstone Affair, #3)

Eyes Wide Open  (The Blackstone Affair, #3) - Raine Miller
Read from June 12 to 13, 2013


Is that book worth reading?
A short answer would be “NO”.
The long one “FUCK, NO”.
sentence – KILL IT WITH FIRE.

Now, I’m not going to hide spoilers in that review because:
a)Plot is predictable
b)What plot?
c)A person with two lone brain cells would’ve figured a big secret before the end of the second book. (view spoiler)
d)It’s a clear rip off 50 shades of “coulour that is not to be publicly mentioned”


One of my biggest gripes - NOTHING HAPPENS. To describe emotions of characters and how they deal with situations is good. But you can't, you just can't, devote 90% of a book to it. I mean really? Pregnancy & marriage. That’s it. The entire plot a is dramatic emotional rollercoaster. The supposed imminent threat to her mostly forgotten. Events related to “danger” are barely mentioned in passing. Fuck me. And when you think that finally, after 180 pages there'll be a change... For fucks sake,(view spoiler) takes like 10 pages total. And that was the most thrilling and unexpected thing in the book! I flipped at that point. It was a chance for that piece of nonsense to bounce back. Didn’t happen.

That 'security agency' - that is bullshit. The way it's portrayed. Half assed effort. I cringed every time it was mentioned.

And the main characters. I just don't like them. But more on that once I get to quote that monstrosity.

Ridicules marriage proposal - after 2 months! I don’t consider it spoiler, as it’s said on the first page. And she has doubts (how dare she!) And the situation is dealt with extensively on next… 200 pages? Or something like that. Same. Fucking. Conversations. And inner monologues. Over and over again.

And what is Ethan’s reasoning?

“I know, baby. It is far too soon, but the world doesn’t have to know that. To them it looks like you’re about to be the wife of the former-SF, high-profile CEO of Blackstone Inc. To whoever is out there with an agenda, they get a message loud and clear. That they need to keep the hell away from you; that they won’t be able to touch you in any way, shape or form, and that they won’t get close enough to even blink at you, let alone deliver threats like that fucked-up shit from last night. ” He kissed me softly, looking very proud of himself. “It’s a brilliant plan.”

Now, I don’t get how that exactly works. The whole reasoning was so flawed it left me banging my poor head against the wall.

I went to find clothes and realized I thought about sex way too much now. A diversion was definitely a good idea. For now. When I got her alone again, well, then all bets were off that I could keep my hands off her. Highly doubtful. It was just another testament of how well we worked together and why I was going in all the way with my American girl. I’d never needed anyone like I needed her. --> oh, what a wonderful reason to get married. True love in it's fullest. Good sex and nothing else. Because they had nothing else going for them. That’s the truth.

Pestering about a wedding:

“I won’t change my mind, Brynne.” He narrowed his eyes and I could see some hurt there. “You’re everything I want and need. I’m sure of that. I just want to make it official to the world so I can protect you in the best way I know how to. People have married for much less.”

a) what kind of reasoning is that? How would that improve her “protection”?
b) you can't know if you'll change your mind. Nobody gets married planning a divorce. I just HATE all those promises. Fuck you.

What Ethan was suggesting did make me feel pressured, but he also made me feel loved. He was a good man willing to make a commitment to me, and only asking for the same in return. Why was I having so much trouble with it? Oh, I don’t know. He seemed like a crazy possessive asshole. The kind that will try to own you completely and will stab you with a knife when you try to leave. That fragment of her inner monologue is so damaged I don’t even know what to say, really.

Solving every problem with sex. Now, it annoyed me before. I mentioned it in reviews of previous parts.

Not liking the conversation?
Had a nightmare?
Have sex!

"And I was sorry, but I’d been like this with her before. Waking in the night and needing sex to bring myself down from the hyper anxiety of wherever I’d been in my dreams tonight."

“What’s that, strange-man-who-resembles-my-boyfriend-but-can’t-possibly-be-him?” She teased me in a way that made me want to throw her over my shoulder and head back upstairs to our bedroom. --> everything she does leads to sexual thoughts in Ethan's head. EVERYTHING. Plus three was a lame joke.

I glared at him. “Don’t even think about it, Blackstone.” I nodded toward his crotch. “It so won’t help your cause or getting you more of what you like.”
He bit off the end of a piece of bacon and ignored my threat, sweeping over me with sexy, slow eyes. “I like the jealous you very much. It turns me on,” he said in a low tone.
What doesn’t?

Lame jokes. Worst kind of humor. Especially after reading Kate Daniels series… Pathetic. Few examples:
- Dr. Banana Probe (yeah, I know, what a brilliant witty nick name Ethan thought of)
- Calling a fetus 'our little blubbery'. I've had it with terms of endearment describing incomplete, underdeveloped human beings. No more. Stop it. I’m not a mother, so all the “baby stuff” always makes me want to vomit in my mouth.
- all jokes about prospective children, now that I think about it, were horrible.

"Your brother can be as blunt as a wooden plank.”
She laughed at my assessment. “I know that too. ‘Subtlety’ is not in his lexicon.”

“Morning, baby. I seem to have a little monkey on my back.” It felt good to be playful for a change. (*his niece is on his back)
“Oh, I’m sorry but we’ve not met before. I wonder if you might’ve seen my boyfriend around?” she asked.
--> god, so funny. Finish me off with a brick. Please.


Cheesy dialog. I mean shit that will stain your brain and have you want to scream at night in discomfort. It stays with you.

He put his hand over my left breast and held it there. “I can feel your heart. It’s my heart too.” NO it’s not, you’d be dead! Idiot.

I nodded. “It is your heart, and I am very real, Ethan. I’ve wanted everything we’ve ever done together, and you own my heart now.”

“Now it’s my turn to ask you if you’re real.”
His eyes roamed over me as he nodded again. “I think I became real when I met you.”

“I love you with all of my heart, and all of my mind, and with all of my body. It all belongs to you now.” --> bad idea. You belong to yourself. Only. That kind of dependence is not romantic. It’s sick and will likely lead to a dysfunctional relationship and bad breakup.

Brynne was my greatest gift. She was the first person to really see inside me. Only her eyes seemed even capable of doing it. Only my Brynne’s eyes.

It always amazed me at how easy it was to carry her. I knew why. It was because she carried my heart with her wherever she went. My heart was in her hands, and carrying her was some form of self-preservation, maybe. Holding her, holding me up. --> (Me – screams like a banshee and runs off into the woods while scratching her eyes out, just to never be able to read another line of this verbal diarrhea ever again.)


Descriptions. Yes, nothing is done properly in that book.

He kissed me for a while in his gentle and precious way, as was typical. --> descriptions fluctuate between crude and simplistic to weird, sometimes downright Victorian structures. Such inconsistency takes me right out of the story.


And now a 50 rip off! Brace yourselfs my elves!

- “My poor Ethan...” Sounds familiar???
- Eye rolling. ( Btw. Who does that. Repeatedly. In real life. ?)
- Dirty mouth
- A millionaire (again, how exactly did he make that money? Security agencies don’t work like that. They are either a) small and focused, trustworthy b) mercenaries c) can be big, but take care of routine stuff like guarding parking lots and installing home alarms. What Mr. Blackstone has exactly is beyond me, because it only gets mentioned in the passing. No details.)

I could list more, but would like to keep my sanity.

BAD WRITING> that's what it is! Just that simple. Sums it up.

Repetitive phrases I was well aware of how Brynne’s touch soothed me like nothing else had before. She was the only lifeline that I wanted to grab on to when I found myself in that state. --> stop repeating it, we know already. Like ‘My poor Ethan’. So. Many. Times. I’m a lucky, lucky man for sure. But then that’s not news and it hasn’t been for a while now. (Oh, the sweet irony. Glad author recognizes that it's been stated multiple times and is ready to move on. Yeah, right. No such luck.)

Consistency? What is that?

Her whole face changed into something indescribable, a mixture of beauty and happiness. (Really? I mean really? What's with that writing? So is it indescribable or easily describable? I’m confused.)

“I’m happy for you, E. Hell, I’m thrilled to see you like this. Happy . . . you’re happy with her.” --> again, mad writing skills. An impressive vocabulary! What a variety! In case you wonder the word ‘happy’ has been also used AGAIN right after that line. I’m not a native English speaker, but even I know at least a few acceptable synonyms.

And what is with (view spoiler) It’s just one example. Then they continue to run. After eating! And do some other things. And get home. I marked that as a spoiler, because so few things happen, that even taking a stroll seems like a major event.

“I haven’t baked bread in a long time. That was fun this morning.”
“It was for me too,” Hannah said. “Would you like some? I was just getting ready to do an early tea for Freddy and the kids. Fresh bread and homemade strawberry jam.”
“It sounds divine, but a shower is calling my name after that long run and walk back here.”

a) nice to finally recognize she's sweaty
b) Who talks like that?! That dialog was so stiff I could get crucified on it and it would hold. Maybe that was the plan…

Things that don't make sense (are stated, but aren't based in facts) I love that one. Like saying ‘you’re so strong baby’ but nothing ever happened to support that statement. Got to love those crude attempts to forcefully make of story and characters something that they’re clearly NOT.

“Watch it, Blackstone,” she warned.
“Or what?” I challenged.
Pointless phrases . Yes, I would like to know ‘what’. Because no matter how badly he fucks up, she will let him stick it in, and since that’s all he wants… Than what is her threat, exactly?

this was my truth. --> tendency to end long inner monologues with something profound like that. Makes me die inside a little bit each time. My poor black little heart. I’ll have to go and still some candy from kids to recuperate. Or push the doors labeled “pull” or something radical like that.

Finally! a quarter into a book the "big secret" is out! Gasp! Like no shit. I didn’t see that one coming. What a plot twist. A pregnancy? Vomiting, fatigue, mood swings, tender breasts… All of that didn’t give me a clue.

we’re pregnant --> I just fucking LOATH that phrase. No. WE are not pregnant. ONE person is pregnant and it's a woman. Period. End of report. Next case. Next fucking case.

This was surreal. It really was.--> definition of world surreal (very strange; more like a dream than reality, with ideas and images mixed together in a strange way) Adam Hills had a nice piece about usage of that word ( . Buying a pregnancy test is NOT surreal, unless a man, that has never even heard of sex, is pregnant with a toaster and a well educated jedi porcupine sells the test (made out of chocolate and unicorns gold bladder forged in Mordor) in the sewers while 4 teenage mutant ninja turtles oversee the deal. THAT is surreal. Sex resulting in pregnancy – not so much.

I loved when Ethan smiled, period. Because it changed his whole face to where he really looked ... happy .--> well isn't that fucking perceptive. Groundbreaking powers of observation. We're in awe.

“I wish I could make love to you right now. Now. Before we know what it says . . . because it will change nothing that I feel in here . . . for you.” He picked up my right hand and laid it flat over his heart. --> Well, wouldn't that be jolly, if she wasn't pregnant but got knocked up right THEN, because she's been vomiting and hasn't taken her pill. But no, LOGIC MUSTN'T DISTURB THE ROMANTIC ATMOSPHERE OF THE MOMENT.

"but I knew without a doubt that she would be very, very good at motherhood. There wasn’t a sliver of hesitation in my mind that it wouldn’t be the case. She’d be a perfect mum." --> yeah, what gave you that impression? Tell us about it.

Good point. Already impressed with her intelligent and thoughtful questions as she went through everything with the doctor --> more like ROUTINE and PREDICTABLE questions... The key one, she didn't ask. Doctor mentioned it. And she was SO shocked. (view spoiler)

“I need Ethan. I need him for everything. I need him in order to be happy, and to be the father of this baby we made, and to love me and care for me . . .” My voice trailed off to a whimper that sounded so pathetic I loathed myself in that moment. --> Yes, that is not a healthy attitude. Not something to aspire to. You should feel bad.

I finally had someone who cared for me because of me, not how I looked or how much brass I happened to have. --> Not really, if I recall previous books. There is only SEX. NOTHING MORE!

Oh, and stop with CUMMING ON COMMAND! Just stop! That is not even funny anymore.


Fucking idiocy pregnancy! Again! In every. Damn. Book. I. read. Can’t people just get it right? Like ask about birth control pills, how they work and what could make them fail? You’d think a girl that was terrified of getting knocked up would think about it.

POV of male protagonist doesn't help. Makes him look like a worthless, sex crazed asshole.

Time to face my girl and see what trouble I was in this morning from all of my bad behavior last night. I wasn’t really worried, though. My baby loves me, and I know how to give her what she needs . . . I smirked to myself at my smug thoughts. What a conceited bastard. Yes, you make her orgasm, so other problems have no significance.

That is what made me vehemently HATE that book. I’m not a little bit ticked, I’m OUTRAGED.

Damn, but she’s beautiful when she’s riled. --> I have an issue with that. It's condescending and disrespectful. Degrading even.

I knew that terminating the pregnancy was out of the question. Out of the fucking realm of possibility. No way would I allow my child to be killed or have it hushed away. I just hoped that Brynne felt the same way I did. What if she doesn’t? Well, nice of you, E, to consider she is a person and has some say in things.

If I’ve gotten my girl pregnant, if we’ve made a baby together and it’s growing inside her right now, then I’ll never lose her, she’ll never leave me, nothing can ever take her away. I didn’t see how anything or anyone could dispute my logic. Yet again, it made perfect sense to me. cause you're mental. Getting girl knocked up doesn’t give you the ownership.

How he handled her modeling job. Or rather demanded she gave it up because he didn’t like it. Figures.

“Good. I hope they don’t call you.” She still stayed silent but her eyes flashed. “I’m serious, Brynne. You’re not posing naked anymore.” There, I said it.
“It’s my decision, Ethan. You have no right to tell me I can’t do it.”
“Oh, really?” I grabbed her left hand and held it up. “What’s this ring mean, then? You’re going to be my wife, the mother of my child—a person whom I don’t want posing in the fucking nude anymore!” I glared right back. “I definitely have a say.”
An enormous NO. I lost it. Any scrapings of sympathy just died.

They argue. He doesn’t like her point of view: My temper was getting the better of me again as I struggled with how to bring us back together on the issue. One idea came to mind of how I might accomplish it, though. I could tear off that yellow silk robe she had on and fuck her into next week, and then we could have this conversation, or argument, or whatever the hell this shit was right here. That might work. I was just getting started on taking her. This session would conclude in one way, and only one way— with my cock buried inside her sweet cunt in an orgasmic frenzy. There were no apologies for what I did next, either. I took her. I took what was mine and had my way with Brynne. THAT is a solution? NO! FUCK NO!

She stuck with me the whole distance in body for sure. The spirit part would have to be considered later. Shag first, talk later had worked for us before, and I felt confident it would now. --> After that I lost all the remaining shreds of respect for characters. That sealed one * rating.

Cause the girl annoys me too: Yeah, my man was not happy at all. He sounded a little wounded too, and I felt guilty yet again for being so unappreciative. -->you mean heaving your own opinion? Wanting something else than your man? How dare you!

The red-haired waitress eyeballed him thoroughly as she seated us by a window, something I had grown used to when out with Ethan. Females didn’t hide their appreciation very well I was always left wondering how the person would act or what they would say to him if I wasn’t there.
The waitress came back over eventually and made the ordering of our breakfasts pretty sickening as she flirted with Ethan throughout the whole torturous process.
--> my problem with many books lately. Women don't act like that in general. They just don't, no matter how handsome a guy. It pisses me of that in fiction the world is so often divided clearly into horny bitches (majority) and a few saintly virgins that acquired "people" status. Because others are treated more like horny pieces of meat to use and despise.

(view spoiler) Is that even spoiler? I mean they have sex all the time. Everything ends in sex.

I don't have kids, so I don't understand what's the big idea. OMG, an ultrasound! How exciting. Well, I'd rather watch cardboard exist. You fuckers wouldn’t know a difference between your ‘blueberry’ and a malicious tumor.

Unrealistic anal sex. In a book like that? No shit. Well precisely – no shit (pun intended). I have nothing against anal sex, I’m not a prude, but please, do mention the elephant in the room. There is a lot to anal sex and it gets omitted. Not a good source of knowledge, don’t look for guidance here. It was almost as bad as penis size in Mary Janice Davidson series. “Thick as a drinking glass and as long as a forearm” if I recall. And then she even gave that horse (I mean it HAD to be a horse + LSD pills… No other explanation) a blow job. A successful one! Well, you never cease to learn.