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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Born To Sing by Donna Del Oro

Born To Sing by Donna Del Oro
Publisher: Devine Destinies
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Length: Full Length (267 pgs)
Heat Level: spicy
Rating: 4.5 books
Reviewed by Iris

Two gifted, good-looking opera singers, from different cultures and opposite sides of the track in Texas, discover that falling in love is wonderful. But love may not be enough if it interferes with their dreams of success in the ruthlessly competitive world of opera. D.J. McKay's dream of singing in European opera houses clashes with his rich daddy's prejudices against such a "sissy" career; his obsession with beautiful Eva Villalobos doesn't sit well with his socialite mother, either. Meanwhile, Eva strives to help her poor family financially by achieving success on the stage.

So what happens when their passion for each other thwarts their dreams? How can their relationship survive three-thousand miles of separation? Will their ambition to succeed kill the only true love they have ever known?

This is a well-written, interesting tale that brings the opera world and romance novels together in a pleasurable read. Told as a “memoir” to a reporter, Eva uses her own words as well as the autobiography of her fellow opera singer and love, DJ, to fill the reader in on her past. Interspersed between the reminiscing and autobiography, the reader is treated to Eva’s modern day and glimpses of how the past affected the future. This treatment could be confusing, but actually is a unique and fun way to get a backstory.

The pull between upbringing and the opera world affects the choices made by both DJ and Eva. Their upbringing and family as well as their individual choices both affect the road to their relationship. The twists and turns are what make the story interesting! While the ending isn’t the typical “happily ever after” found in many romances, the resolution is satisfying and in keeping with the tone of the entire story.

It is a meaty read, and I needed several days to get through the story. However, the plot and storyline were interesting and able to keep me involved, even when I had to put the book down.

I was worried that having a music background would leave me disappointed, either wanting more detail, or agonizing over clear inaccuracies. Fortunately, that couldn’t be further from the truth! The other problem I was worried about was that it would be too detailed, and cater to the opera/music crowd and leave the other readers confused and unwilling to finish the book. I am happy to report, all of my fears were unfounded!

Storylines for the operas in which the characters performed were detailed. What could be a confusing aspect for readers, was actually an addition to the story. The opera plotlines were given a light treatment and didn’t overwhelm me with too much information.

Clean, meaty, and interesting. If you are interested in music or opera, give this a try. If you aren’t interested in this performing art, give it a read anyway; you’ll enjoy the story, too!