Josh Reviews: Hyde by Lauren Stewart

Posted September 22, 2012 by Joshua Burns in / 0 Comments


Title: Hyde
Series: Hyde #1
Author: Lauren Stewart
Publisher: The Hook Publishing
Format: Kindle Edition, 418 pages
Published: July 8th, 2012
ASIN #: B008IVT0W2
Genre: Urban Fantasy
My Copy: From the Author
Rating:Paw RatingPaw RatingPaw Rating

To survive, they must embrace what they most despise . . . in themselves and each other.

Mitch Turner is everything women want most in a man—charismatic, successful, drop-dead gorgeous. Except he’s not a man—he’s a monster.

The only way Mitch can protect others from his monstrous side is to stop them from getting too close…that and a 7×7 foot cage. Isolated by his genetic curse, he spends his life hurting people emotionally, driving them away before Hyde can harm them physically. But, after a night of the best sex Mitch has ever had, he realizes that might be impossible. Except the woman he wakes up with claims she doesn’t remember any of it.

Eden Colfax is everything men want most, men other than Mitch, that is. She’s kind, honest to a fault and sickeningly sweet. To rid herself of the monsters that haunted her broken childhood, Eden doesn’t lie, doesn’t curse, and definitely never wakes up naked in strangers’ beds…until the day she does.

Then the flashbacks start—places she’s never been, people she’s never met, blood she’s never spilled. She discovers she’s split into two parts—the woman she thought she knew and another who is capable of anything. And the only person with any answers is the one man she never wants to see again.

What neither of them know is that someone is watching them both, manipulating them, determined to see just how evil the two of them really are. And when the truth begins to seep through the cracks, leaving them nowhere to turn but each other, they will be forced into a partnership neither had expected.

Because in life, who you trust is as important as who you are. And when you can’t even trust yourself, sometimes the only person you can rely on is the last person on Earth you should be falling for.

*** This novel is intended for adults only, as it includes lots of cursing, descriptive sex, biting sarcasm, and themes similar to those in Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, from which this story was inspired.

Hyde cleverly, and for some, even me, achingly puts off the appearance of its eponymous beast (the prologue does not count and for what little it contains of that which follows should have been dropped) until long into the second act. By then you have a real good feel for the characters. You have heard about Mitch’s transformation and why he has to be such a jerk to everyone around him (a real Jerkyll if you ask me) and seen Eden’s rather promiscuous transformation into unadulterated temptress and temptation.

Much of this book is dedicated to developing Mitch and Eden’s relationship. We are reminded again and again by these shady off-screen characters, bantering over cell-phones, even though they keep reminding each other they’re not supposed to, that Mitch and Eden must get together and have lots of sex. We are not given the purpose behind this objective. What do you expect from an organization that simply calls itself “The Clinic”?

Meanwhile, Detective Landon, played I am certain in an adaption of this book by Laurence Fishburne or Forrest Whittaker, is nose deep in Mitch’s dirty laundry. Turns out that Mitch’s sister was killed a couple of years ago. The case is in bad need of a killer. Jolie, Mitch’s ride or die gal, secretary by day, freaky under the covers partner by night, provides an alibi, operating like a much more sneaky and clever secretary than the one found in American Psycho (like this book but a lot more bloody). Landon’s efforts are rebuffed.

You know, however, because Landon is such a serious detective, indicated most elegantly by Forrest Whittaker’s lazy eye, that this smoke-screen will not curb him for long. No man escapes Landon. I may be here going off a little on Landon. His arc, however potent, is cut to the thinnest, although he is clearly one deserving of digression.

Eden’s problem waking up places without memories of how she got there, especially on Mitch’s doorstep or on Mitch’s car, showing Mitch things the real Eden would not dare to, falls under Landon’s purview when a new dead body turns up. These dramas aggravate Mitch’s condition. It’s a wonder he makes it as far as he does. Acutely aware of his condition, he has primed his house with a marvelous cage. How much does this smack of Christian Bale? This cage allows him to undergo his transformation without shredding everything in sight. This cage becomes a recurring figure as Eden and Mitch undergo transformation after transformation which they simply would not want others to be around, for their safety and others.

This cage, provided with its own room, acts as the preeminent filmic object. One could imagine very great scenes enacted in and around this cage. We do, indeed, get to see a lot of cage action. I didn’t think it was enough. The third act becomes an endless week of copulation. At that point, I was just ready for it to end, which it almost did, before it insured it would have a sequel. That was a little too much.

Recommendation: A well-characterized and, for the most part, well-paced read with a reference, however buried, to an older text


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I review Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance books with a focus all things werewolf. Based out of Ottawa, Canada

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Reviews UF/PR novels with an eye for weres of all kinds.

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