Earning Her Trust is the debut novel from author Adore Ian. The story follows college students Marrin and Damian as they navigate their relationship, friendships, and their rocky pasts.
I’m impressed. Adore shows a lot of promise with this debut. This book wasn’t perfect, but it was well written, easy to read, and overall, I really enjoyed it. My favorite part is that it felt relevant. The story included many timely topics like consent, the issues bi-racial people face, and handling trauma with sensitivity.
As main characters, I enjoyed Damian and Marrin. Damian was a little bit too good to be true, but that’s how I like my heroes! He had endless patience for Marrin and her mercurial moods, plus he was rich, hot, and hung. I don’t know what else you want. Marrin did have a lot of baggage, but she had gone through a lot during her formative years and beyond, so I understood where she was coming from. This felt a little bit like Gossip Girl with nicer characters and set in college.
The cons: This book could have easily been one hundred pages shorter. There were too many details and a ton of characters and repetitive language/actions from those characters. The pop culture references were cute but, again, there were too many of them and it slowed the story down. At the beginning, I loved the inclusion of consent and discussions of rape culture, after hearing about it multiple times though, I started to feel like the author was lecturing me which isn’t fun as a reader and it took me entirely out of the story.
Side note: If I had to hear Damian talk about his “inner alpha male” or “neanderthal” one more time, I was going to throw my kindle. Damian wasn’t an alpha male. He was actually one of the most beta heroes I’ve read in an “erotic” story in a long time. I would also hesitate to call this an erotic novel. Sure there was lots of sex, but it wasn’t anything too scandalous, and I would say the kink level was a 2/10 and the steam level was a 6/10. The sex scenes were gratuitous but nothing I haven’t read before.
Overall, I honestly thought this was a decent first book it was even a four star read for me until about 70% when it became clear this book was too long and too repetitive. I look forward to seeing what this author writes next!
**I received an ARC of this book in order to provide an honest review**
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