Title: Wild Senses
Original Title: Jaguarà (Italian)
Author: Margaret Gaiottina
Translator: Petra Bagnardi
Published Date: Oct 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance with a tinge of paranormal/mystery/erotica
POV: Third Person
Orlando Saxton still does not know that his father hired for him a blind assistant. Seductive and arrogant plastic surgeon, the last scion of the Saxton family is so accustomed to the extreme reactions he provokes in women that he needs more and more exciting diversions to be satisfied. Moreover, the dissolute women he usually dates are more than happy to offer help.
Maya O’Byrne, so used to getting by stirring trust in others and sensing danger, remains puzzled by the unusual scent that constantly surrounds her new boss: a dark smell of wild and tropical forest.
But will imagination – so developed in people like her- be enough to prepare Maya for the truth? And above all, will Orlando ‘s heart be able to withstand a candor so fearless and lethal?
*** Copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review ***
Wild Senses is originally written in Italian with the original title Jaguarà. It revolved around Maya, a 25 years old quiet, unassuming woman. She has been blind for the last 10 years due to an unfortunate accident. Losing her sight, prompted the intensification of her other senses. She used her sense of smell to alert her of dangers.
Recently, she lost her father and now on her own. She was offered a job as a personal assistant at a private plastic surgery clinic by Arthur Sexton who hired her father as his butler. Arthur saw her as a family and wanted to help her to repay her father’s dedication all those years when her father worked for the Sextons.
Arthur had three sons and Maya was assigned to his second son, Orlando, the handsome and highly skilled surgeon. Unfortunately for Maya, he was an arrogant prick with a sensitivity of a brick wall.
Orlando did a lot of things to make Maya’s life a hell. By accident, Maya learned of his sexual proclivities. While she felt it was wrong, and her senses were running amok telling her he’s dangerous, his animal magnetism pulled her towards him. It turned out his bedroom activities was not his only dark side.
In general, the story was entertaining and easy to follow. The first 50% can be a bit slow at some points, but after the twists and revelations were uncovered, it moved at an appropriate pace.
I like it when the narration described how Maya went about her life – how she used her sense of touch and smell to navigate the world. I felt like I was blind and looking through the world with her “eyes”.
I like a lot of the characters in the book. I like that even though Maya seemed fragile, she never wanted to be treated like one. As for Orlando, he was just okay for me. I wish there was more intensity in his character. The book focused mostly on Maya but I’d really like to see more on how he coped when he was pushed into his dark side.
The other two characters I like were Jeremy and Thiago. Jeremy was her best friend and I like how sweet he was. And I love Thiago. I actually like him more than Orlando.
However I have several issues with this book. One of it was the circumstances of her father’s death. We got an inclination of what happened but how and why did it happen? Was it an accident, or was there a provocation? And Maya didn’t even have any idea of it when it really was a big issue that could have been the turning point in the story. The issue of Thiago and Orlando also felt unresolved, but I can let that one go assuming it will be addressed in the sequel.
Another issue which is the biggest one for me is the writing/editing. Since I do not read Italian, I can’t compare it with the original book. I’m assuming it was a problem of translation. There were a lot of technical issues with sentence structures and plenty of typos.
Overall, the story has a potential and I enjoyed reading it, but the technical issues did affect my reading experience.
This review is also available on Goodreads.
Margaret Gaiottina has written five romance novels. “Jaguarà” is the lastest one, with the title of “Wild Senses”. It has been translated into the English language and she is writing its sequel, Thiago. She lives in Rome with her husband, daughter and son.
Other novels: “Un nido di terra per la donna di Cristallo”, “L’alba della chimera”.