Elizabeth Gage goes out with a bang with the last of her five book deal with Simon & Schuster. INTIMATE is one roller coaster ride of secrets and sins among the rich. The main sufferers are three beautiful specimens (aren’t they all?) whose interconnections end up destroying one of the trio. Jordan Lazarus has come from nothing and is now one of America’s richest men but he’s far from being happy, especially in the matters of the heart. That is until he meets Leslie Chamberlain, a blue color type who also rises up to become one hot commodity in the advertising world. But she has secrets of her own, big ones that will eventually destroy their relationship. In comes Jill Fleming, a double-crossing sociopathic chameleon who uses men and women to satisfy her every need. When she sets her eyes on Lazarus, fireworks, until he realizes the evil of her ways; then it’s cuckoo time as she becomes nuttier and nuttier for the sake of owning him. Of course there’s more to the plot but since I don’t want to give away anything major, I’d better leave it there.
What’s safe to say is that, whatever lies between the covers, you’ll end up devouring the book in no time—despite the sometimes flawed approach taken. Because let’s be honest here. I, being an old pro, can find some predictability in any printed work, and it’s no different with INTIMATE. Every now and then I found myself guessing its outcome. But since the novel works aplenty already due to its strong narration and characterization, not to mention a psychological depth rarely used in a fluff piece such as this one, I scarcely minded. Besides, I’d rather focus on the positive when it comes to a Gage. It makes the reading experience all the more worthwhile. Especially when the soap bubbles pop, and believe me they often do.
As in her previous work, sex abounds. So do well-thought-out plot twists in general. There’s nothing better than an erotica novel with meat. It’s all about effectiveness. And Elizabeth Gage knows how to attain it. She is, in a way, the E L James (Fifty Shades of Grey) of her time but with a better outcome (but not income, for sure) because she at least can write. Or he can. If you’re a regular here or simply a Gage fanatic you probably know of the debate regarding the author’s identity (Elizabeth Gage is a pseudonym). I think she’s a he, some think otherwise. But in the end does it really matter?
So why did Gage never became a household name if she’s such a talent? There’s a back story to this, one I discussed in another post (along with her true identity). But in a gist, she was underappreciated by her publishers, resulting in low sale of her work. It’s probably the reason why she moved to Mira Books. I have yet to read those, which I believe—if based on reviews—to be more toned down. But it’s all right. I’ll get to them eventually. I still have PANDORA'S BOX, which is another big glittery door stopper, to get into. You can be sure I will savour every moment of it—as I did with INTIMATE. Find it, read it, love it.
Until next time—Martin