Love and Marriage Go Together Like a Horse and Carriage: Temptation by Karen Ann Hopkins

Noah is Amish. Rose is English. (Not like tea and footy English; just not Amish.) They are not meant to be together, but when they lay eyes on each other, they immediately fall in love and know that they must find a way to spend the rest of their lives together–even if it means one of them must give up everything they have ever known.

Karen Ann Hopkins’ Temptation is a story of forbidden love between a boy and a girl from two drastically worlds. I was excited for the culture clash! And the swoon! And the buggy rides! Alas, this was a gigantic letdown. There are horses and puppies in Temptation, and even they were not enough to save it. Temptation was quite possibly the worst book I have ever read all the way through. (Though we’ll forget about the V.C. Andrew phase of my life.)

I generally have very little tolerance for books I dislike and put them down quickly–and thus do not write about them–but Temptation was like a reality tv show or soap opera so mystifyingly bad that you just can’t bring yourself to change the channel or turn it off.

Glutton for punishment that I was, I made it through all 400 pages. I figured I would at least find out what happens. And do you know what happened? I discovered that this book was not in fact a standalone, but the first book in a series. 400 pages was apparently not sufficient to resolve all of the bad decisions that lay within. But I am not masochistic enough to read another book in this series, I’m afraid.

Temptation attempts to delve into a gray area of love, but it does so using purely black and white terms. The book is packed with all the usual Amish stereotypes, never bringing anything new to the table. Further, it was poorly written and had very little plot development. Rose and Noah fall in love immediately. I was almost willing to forgive their insta-love, even though it is something I generally abhor, accepting that perhaps the “otherness” factor was at least reasonable justification for instant-attraction, if not all out love.

However, the relationship never moved on from that point. They continued to be in L-O-V-E for no real reason that I could figure out aside from their good looks and mutual appreciation of horsies and kissing. There are admittedly some pretty hot kissing scenes, but not enough to save this sinking ship, and certainly not hot enough for either of them to play something like Trading Spouses for the rest of their lives.

One might hope that Noah and Rose would at least be characters that you could root for along their painful journey. Sadly, that was not the case, either. Noah is basically a selfish, controlling douchebag, and Rose a girl with so little self-respect that at a couple points she nearly considers getting pregnant (Noah’s idea) so that they can convince the adults in their lives they should be together. I was so appalled that I nearly threw my Nook across the room, and then wanted to send my ovaries flowers, chocolates, and a card to let them know that I have more respect for them than that.

If you cannot resist the allure of Amish smut and must pick Temptation up anyway, I understand and will forgive you. In general, though, I would strongly encourage you to save yourself some time and just go watch For Richer or Poorer instead. It’s not particularly good either, but at least you can get it over with in 115 minutes and not have to wait for a sequel.


14 Responses to "Love and Marriage Go Together Like a Horse and Carriage: Temptation by Karen Ann Hopkins"

  • Go Melanie! Go Melanie! After all our excitement, what a letdown, eh? But…still…despite all the BAD…I have to admit I was still into the kissing bits. What does this say about me?!

    1 Anna said this (April 26, 2012 at 10:44 AM)

    • Your love for kissing books clearly knows no bounds. Sometimes our bodies betray our minds. It’s ok, Anna.

      2 Melanie said this (April 26, 2012 at 10:46 AM)

  • I love you and this review like crazycakes! That is all.

    3 Heidi @ Ya Bibliophile said this (April 26, 2012 at 10:45 AM)

  • Bahahaha I loved the “send my ovaries flowers, chocolates and a card to let them know I have more respect for them than that.” Love your reviews!

    4 Britney said this (April 26, 2012 at 11:03 AM)

  • Ha, I love this review like woah. <3 I saw so many people talking about this one and it made me want to pick it up, but then I also heard comments like this review and I thought "no thanks". Yahhhh I can't stand controlling love interests and the MC's who let themselves get walked all over. (Is that even proper grammar? I don't even know at this moment.) And insta-love so very rarely works… gah, I don't know why books continue to be published with no character development or reasons for relationships.

    5 Ashley @ Book Labyrinth said this (April 26, 2012 at 11:14 AM)

  • Honestly, I just love the title of this post! How fitting.

    6 Sarah said this (April 26, 2012 at 12:45 PM)

    • Sometimes I have to work hard to think of these things….and then sometimes they are just SO OBVIOUS.

      7 Melanie said this (April 26, 2012 at 4:33 PM)

  • I haven’t read the book (and won’t now) but I had to comment that your review title literally made me snort out loud.

    And on a personal note, having grown up in PA and therefore driven through areas that are heavily populated with Amish people, nothing will push one to murder faster than being behind a horse and buggy. NOTHING.

    8 Karen said this (April 26, 2012 at 1:20 PM)

    • I have so little patience for people driving cars below the speed limit that I imagine I would probably have a coronary driving behind a buggy.

      9 Melanie said this (April 26, 2012 at 4:34 PM)

  • Oh what a let down, I kept seeing this book in people’s IMM posts and I really liked the cover but I had no idea what it was about – great, honest review

    10 VeganYANerds said this (April 26, 2012 at 6:02 PM)

  • The thing with Temptation was that I liked the first 66% of the book and then I thought it all went to crap! I was SO disappointed! I like the cute little romance and I was calling Noah a “frisky Amish boy.” But then, like you said, Noah was controlling and the characters did stupid things and then I found out their story isn’t over. I’m hoping, hoping, hoping the author can turn their story around and maybe make it suck a little less. Great review Melanie!

    11 Jacinda @ The Reading Housewives said this (April 29, 2012 at 7:55 AM)

    • Agree that it got worse as it went on. If you read the rest maybe you can give me the sparknotes version 😉

      12 Melanie said this (April 29, 2012 at 8:00 AM)

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