I'm struggling to make my mind up about this book.
On one hand, this is probably the most intriguing take on the Kidnapped By A Sheikh trope I've ever seen - the heroine turns out to be his Seekrit Daughter and falls in love with his bodyguard, of which the sheikh is surprisingly approving - but on the other, I never really bought into the romance between Veronica and Nicholas.
On one hand, Islamic culture is treated with great respect and in careful detail, and on the other (this is an actual quote from the book) "He looked typically Egyptian and that meant if I ever saw him again, I was sure I wouldn't recognise him". Wow. Way to imply that All Brown People Look The Same To White Eyes.
On one hand, the author writes marvelously descriptive paragraphs lavishly detailing the scenery in every location the heroine finds herself - and on the other, I still don't know what Veronica actually did for a job before she went on her adventure. Even though the book is told in first-person from Veronica's PoV, we never find out that detail about her. We never really get to KNOW her.
On one hand, I admired Veronica's pluck and determination in standing up to the sheikh's nasty bitch of a second wife who was determined to be rid of her - and on the other, I wanted to grab her and shake her and ask why she wasn't more forceful in demanding answers?
Talking of answers, there were a hell of a lot of questions left unanswered in this book. At one point fairly early on, a young woman is murdered and Veronica is briefly blamed. She is quickly absolved... but the murder is never mentioned again and absolutely no attempt seems to be made to solve it.
The book's villain turns up in the last few pages to kidnap Veronica and attempt to force her into marriage, but once again we never find out WHY. Nor does the burning question Veronica has been trying to ask through the whole book "How exactly DID my mother and father meet and have me?" ever get answered.
Going back to the romance between Veronica and Nicholas, it really feels very rushed. She sees him swimming a couple of times, thinks he's hot, and the next time she sees him he's picking her up out of the sand where she escapes her kidnappers. Pretty much the next time after that he's sneaking into her room at night, kissing her, not answering any of her questions and then ASKING IF SHE LOVES HIM.
I was going to give this book 3 stars, but looking back at the criticisms I have of it above, I just can't. 3 stars means 'It was OK' and though the writing was very good, the story just has too many massive flaws, plot holes and unresolved questions. I read through to the end because I was hoping some of them would get answered, but they never did. 2 stars.
Caught Between Two Worlds is available on Amazon now.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through ReadingAlley.