Breaking The Silence by Katie Allen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I have a soft spot for a tortured hero. I can't help it. There is nothing that melts my butter any quicker than a big strong ox of a man with issues and a shy, sensitive side. And that describes our protagonist to a T. William is a quiet computer programmer who moved around his whole life, but he's finally settled into a beautiful house in icy Minnesota. He works from home, doesn't leave the house much, and has no social life to speak of. The best part of his day is looking out of his window to see this woman walking her dog. He doesn't know what it is about her, but he is drawn to her and he lives for the moments when he can catch a glimpse of her from his bedroom window. Yea, I know. It sounds terribly creepy, but it's not. William is just painfully shy and he can't get up the nerve to go and talk to her. The most he can do is masturbate to thoughts of her while he is in the shower. Again, I know that sounds creepy....but it's not. He's PAINFULLY shy. So shy that he is 28 years old and he's never really been on ANY dates, he’s never kissed a girl, and yes, he is a virgin.
The woman he watches is Jenny. She’s 26 and works in a comfy little cubicle at an engineering firm. Her cube-mate is her gay BFF, Chris. One day while Jenny was in Chris’s cube, trying to fix his screwed up email, the office asshole, Evan, approaches them. It was common knowledge that Evan was into Jenny. The office even had a betting pool going as to when he would finally ask her out. Turns out, today’s the day. Of course, Jenny turns him down.....lying and saying that she just started seeing someone and that he just might be “the one”. Evan doesn’t exactly believe her, but at least it gets him to leave her alone. For now, at least.
That afternoon turns out to be the time when Will finally gets up the nerve to go out to the walking path to meet Jenny. She was walking and not paying attention.....and she almost bumps into him. They share awkward introductions, and Jenny is amazed by how handsome and shy this Norse God of a man is. As the days go by, Will continues to meet up with Jenny and her dog Rosie for walks. One one of these walks, Jenny asks Will to go with her to a work reception. Eagerly, Will says yes. Yes to their first date....which turns out to be his first date with anybody, not just with Jenny. Although Will isn’t much of a talker at the party, everyone seems to love him - except for Evan. And he is his usual dickish self. Even though Jenny was lying about having a boyfriend when Evan initially asked her out - in fact, she hadn’t even met Will at the time - showing up at the reception with what appeared to be her boyfriend was hopefully enough to ward off Evan the asshole for good. (Although that isn’t why she asked him to go.....Jenny does genuinely like him.)
The party ends and Jenny and Will head back to her place - and on a whim, Jenny asks him to come inside. And the proceed to have ridiculous hot monkey sex. They make it to the bedroom, but only stop long enough to push just enough clothes out of the way to allow some skin on skin contact. (That kind of sex is SERIOUSLY fucking hot.) And despite the fact that Will is a virgin, he sure as hell knows what he’s doing in the bedroom. My guess.....he watched a lot of porn. You know, for instructional purposes. But whatever his methods, he sure managed to turn Jenny’s crank. And afterwards he wanted to cuddle! WTF! Is the perfect? Yes, I think he might be. And Jenny has pretty much drawn the same conclusion.
Their relationship continues on with hot sex, them getting along in every aspect, and Will coming out of his shy and reclusive shell. And then the unthinkable happens - Jenny gets attacked one night and Will comes in on the very end of it and runs the guy off and is left with a broken and shaky Jenny. While trying to comfort her, he keeps moaning over and over again, “not Jenny, not Jenny, not Jenny”. It was hinted at throughout that Will did not have the best childhood. You knew that his lack of dating or sex or kissing even in 28 years stemmed from something other than shyness. After Jenny comes home with him to recover, they finally have the discussion that allows Will to open up about his past and begin to heal and it allows Jenny to heal as well, knowing that someone does know what she’s going through.
The book ended as I had hoped, but you know me.....I wanted one more chapter. An epilogue. Further proof of their happy ever after. I’m really trying to come to terms with my neediness on this front. Really.
I have to say that this review took me FOREVER to write. Why? Because I wanted to write about everything I loved - all the small aspects of Will’s actions and personality that made him one of the sweetest characters that I’ve come across since I’ve been reading romance novels. He was all man, but pure at heart to the point of being almost childlike. He was just an unnaturally sweet soul that just happened to reside in the body of Zeus (as his coworkers called him). His character could have very easily come across as creepy, but he never did. Not one moment in the story made me question Will or his motives. He was genuinely sweet and dear God did I root for him all the way.
I loved everything about this book. This is the second book that I’ve read by this author and I’ve given them both 5 stars.....yet I have never seen this author mentioned on any of the book blogs that I read. Why? She’s fabulous. Her dialogue is charming and funny without being cliche and she knows how create characters that you fall instantly in love with. So please take my advice, check out this book. It’s a beautiful story.....and I dare you not to fall in love with Will! I.Dare.You.