Reason and Romance, by Terrance Layhew

So, a guy writes a novel with no real romance about a guy who is a writer writing a romance novel…wait, what?

Reason and Romance is Terrance Layhew’s debut. It has received pretty great reviews…except from me and a small handful of others. Are those singing its praises being softer on the author because he’s a guy writing a romance novel…about a guy writing a romance novel? If that’s the case, it doesn’t seem quite fair.

George Austen, our protagonist, is an arrogant, emotionally stunted author who is convinced he can write a romance novel using only logic and skill. Because he thinks feelings are a sign of weakness (based on one failed relationship that gets little explanation) he takes the opposite approach, acting obtuse and indifferent to everyone in his circle. A circle he’s lucky to have, I might add.

Enter Margaret Clarke, a fellow writer, who proves herself to be George’s intellectual equal, except for the fact that she keeps trying to get in his good graces no matter how badly he treats her. This boomerang activity goes on ad nauseam, which had me knocking off stars by the end. George just isn’t worth the effort and any last minute epiphanies he has feel out of character and rushed.

(Pssst, Margaret! A word of advice. Give up already. You deserve better. —Signed, Women Everywhere)

Sadly, Reason and Romance was a deflated no-go for me. I liked it but I didn’t love it, which was disappointing. The writing has its smart moments, attempting to be a hybrid of Jane Austen and Oscar Wilde, but the pacing and character development is lacking. The wit is there, the banter is there, but the necessary charm is not. It’s too bad, because it has the potential to be a delight.

7.5/10 Stars

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s