First, allow me to say that I love the cover. The smokey visual and coloring is great and a pleasure for the eye.
Second, the review of the book itself. I received this book months ago but only now got to read it as it was delivered to my parents house and my mom had been in Florida since November. Once my mother came back from Florida it was presented to me and I quickly made an effort to read it. Maybe it's due to feeling rushed, that I was so behind on getting the book that I had to read it and finish it up as soon as possible, but as I read through the book I felt as if it was more of a job than a pleasurable read.
The start of the book was repetitive and there were far too many chapters -- I think that's where I want to begin. Many of the chapters barely lasted for more than a page and they broke off into a new chapter completely unnecessarily. Evangeline, our main character, was most fascinating for me while recalling the memories of her grandmother from when she was a child and teenager. Past that, I found she lacked in development -- but not nearly as much as the rest of the characters in the book!
When a character lacks in development I find it very hard to pay attention to the storyline and even harder to find any emotion for the characters and what they deal with. I especially found Evangeline's struggle of being irresistible to be annoying.
Allow me to back up: Evangeline is given a perfume by her grandmother but warned that it will change her life. Her grandmother, who was well known for making perfumes and scents that had almost magical properties, passes away and leaves behind not only her home but this particular perfume to the immature Evangeline. I don't say immature by way of insulting; she is just graduated from high school and obviously immature because she is so young! Unable to resist temptation, Evangeline applies the perfume and then finds that no man (or woman) can really keep their hands off of her. Makes for an interesting story, no? Well, almost. Evangeline never feels particularly shocked by becoming so fascinating to other individuals and seems to generally shrug off the advances of others. A girl licking her neck because she just can't help it? No big deal. Happens all the time! And that is where I found myself struggle to feel anything for this character. Anything with a magical twist like this is obviously taking a step away from reality but that doesn't mean the characters have to be unbelievable as well. If some girl I did not know came up to me, sniffed me, and licked my neck I would freak out. Even if I knew that was what the perfume did to people, I'd still be freaked out every time. Instead, Evangeline seems to just resign herself to the fact that people act this way and there isn't a period where she feels uncomfortable.
Evangeline quickly decides to move to New Orleans with her new boyfriend of sorts, after only knowing him for a short amount of time and basing her feeling of ownership over him by the fact that she crushed on him for years, and that's where things get only slightly more interesting. The author had a way of describing New Orleans as a magical place which only made me all the more excited to visit the city in May. I've never been there before so I couldn't judge this particular description of scenery and the likes off of that but it still fascinated and excited me. Yet... that was it. The only emotion the book brought forth from me was the excitement for my vacation. Nothing really exciting happens in New Orleans. The story is centered so much on Evangeline and how irresistible she is and it's left with very little else.
So, overall, the story lacked in character development and that made the story suffer overall. It could have benefited had the same application to the description of New Orleans had also been applied to the characters but alas, that did not happen.