I Really Shouldn’t Like It BUT: Beyond Eden by Catherine Coulter

Coulter at her romantic suspense best!

First published in 1992, Beyond Eden is the heart-stopping story of a successful New York City model who must face her deadly past when she meets a tough ex-cop turned private investigator.

Linday Foxe is a successful model in New York, a woman who hides behind a new name to protect herself from a past of betrayal and treachery and a present that becomes fraught with danger. The product of old San Francisco wealth, the daughter of a man who despises her, her life is forever changed when she is brutally assaulted by her sister’s husband, and then rejected by her family.

Lindsay is finally forced to face up to her past when she meets S.C. Taylor, a tough ex-cop, turned private investigator and computer troubleshooter. He is hired to protect her; but can he both win her trust and discover who is trying to kill her and why? Is it her family? A supposed friend or colleague? A faceless sicko or perhaps a mad psychiatrist? Ah, it’s a mystery to savor.

Source: GoodReads

I was shocked at how decent I found this one to be, despite the fact that it has probably one of the most graphic rapes I’ve read.  If your trigger sensitive, you’d most likely want to skip this one but I did think that despite the graphic, horrific nature of this book the fallout and handling of the situation was decently done by Coulter.

That being said, there are some problems mostly with the characterization of the main character’s family which appear to lack form of decency-though Sydney did suit her rapist husband so I have to give that.  Then, she turns any sort of points she might’ve gotten from doing by staying with the bastard, victim bashing her sister, and then getting herself knocked up by said sister’s rapist, before proceeding to try to ruin whatever life Lindsey built for herself.

She sounds horrible, doesn’t she?

She is, but she’s not the worst character in this book which goes to the prince hands down.

That being said, I like this book because of the main character Lindsey.  I felt this character’s pain, I felt she reacted in a way that many victims would’ve acted similar too.  I liked the fact that Coulter dealt with the fact that victims who are in Lindsey situation are often demonized  despite the fact they did nothing wrong.  I like that this character was able to find happiness, though it wasn’t exactly tied with a perfect little bow.

That being said, if your trigger sensitive I highly advise staying the hell away from this book.  The rape scene is truly traumatic.  I didn’t like the fact that so many people treated the main character so horribly.  And I didn’t like the fact that some characters seemed to imply that a good lay would diminish what happened to Lindsey-it wasn’t directly stated, but it was implied by Lindsey’s modeling agent(???) and it made me sick.  Because those feelings aren’t going to go away, even if you are in a stable relationship like Lindsey was at the end of this book.

SC Taylor was a decent hero.  I mean, sometimes I did think he was a little pushy with Lindsey but not too much.  I wish there would’ve been some more moments between him and Lindsey.  While I do think Coulter did a good initial set up with the couple, I felt once they became romantic it went into warp drive.

In the end, while flawed I did think that Beyond Eden had a few things to offer.  Though this is not a book for the faint of heart.

Overall Rating: A B+

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