(5 / 5)
Alan Shaden may look like your average Tinder crush – 6’2”, dark hair, dark eyes, dimples – but with his rugged exterior comes a soft and battered heart, and his biggest secret (literally), which he keeps hidden in the back of his closet.
Alan doesn’t stop to think he’s a sex addict until a therapist deems him one, but that’s right before they have sex in her office. Alan isn’t the best man. He’s the first to admit it, but he’s trying to be better. It’s not easy having good intentions and compulsive desires at the same time.
As Alan’s layers peel away, you come to know the worn soul beneath the man. The traumatic childhood tragedies that have made him this way. A troubled past can shape you, or break you, and Alan is teetering somewhere in between. But he’s a gentleman at heart, hiding a dark past, and a life-size, synthetic secret.
Sabrina is a doll. She can’t move. She can’t talk. She can’t kiss Alan back like a real woman can. She can’t even tell him she loves him. But what she can do for him is something no woman has ever done before: she can stay. Who said love had to be with a real person for it to be real?
I have read two beautiful poetry books by Christina Hart this year. From my experience, novels written by poets will gut you, since they are filled with poetic, raw emotion. This book has serious and adult themes that may be triggering to some readers. Definitely check out the warnings before you buy if you think that this might apply to you.
This one was no exception, except for the fact that Hart didn’t waste any sentences. She didn’t write in flowery words. She was direct and unsympathetic in her storytelling, meaning she told it like it was. Alan’s life was like a train-wreck that you couldn’t look away from, both past and present.
Poor Alan, our protagonist, really can’t catch a break in this book. When his girlfriend hears that he cheated on her with a girl named Jenny, it sets off a chain of events that changes every life he touches throughout the entire story. Not always in great ways either. He’s a little bit of a bad guy, but it’s because he is trying so hard to be good. The harder he tries the worse his situation gets.
You see Alan is many things. He is a product of a shitty upbringing that included an alcoholic dad that beat the crap out of him and abused his mother as well as some child molesting that occurred right under shitty parents noses. I enjoy stories like this because it exposes predators and their methods used to ensnare their victims. It’s important to talk about these things so that we may recognize them.
I couldn’t put this down. Not one sentence was wasted in this book. I truly felt for this man that just couldn’t get his s*** together. Hart did jump back and forth in his life a little, but it was in a very natural way that complemented the story line.
The title Synthetic Love is more than just Sabrina the sex doll from the blurb. It’s the feeling in Alan’s life that he feels with all the women that he seeks to love throughout his life, and that was truly heartbreaking for me to realize over and over again. All he wanted was love, but all these women that he was sleeping with were just fake feelings, a band-aid for his wounds he’d carried his whole life.
Great book, nice job, 5 golden stars.
This book will be live on August 19, 2018. You can preorder it on Amazon.
See Christina Hart’s other books Here.
Read this review and others on Goodreads.