Mirror Image by Cherie Crystal
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: F/F, LGBT, Contemporary, Erotic Romance
Length: 41 pages
Jaylyn Dayley, professional stuntwoman, isn’t afraid of anything. Except commitment. She can tuck and roll, crash and burn, and walk away unscathed, but can she survive the searing heat of her attraction for the lovely Monika Morning during her stint as the actress’ stunt double?
Mirror Image is not only an exciting read, but it is also one of the most unique stories I’ve read. I lost myself in its authentic British setting, and I thought Ms. Crystal did a wonderful job in creating idiosyncratic characters through a realistic and dynamic dialogue.
The plot is exceptional in its own way, and I was primarily drawn by the story surrounding Jaylyn. I had some reservations about Jaylyn being attracted to Monika because, in order for the mechanics of the story to work, they have to be almost identical physically. The idea of someone getting romantically involved with another who looks almost exactly like them was bothering me. However, Ms. Crystal did a good job differentiating the two women, even on a physical level. Furthermore, I really liked that she kept subtly accentuating their differences and bringing their clashing personalities (and nationalities) to the forefront.
Jaylyn, the main character, is very captivating. I love that this story is in first-person since it allowed me to be really attuned with this character. Mirror Image is very complex and emotional, and because of that I truly felt connected to Jaylyn and engaged with her emotions. Monika’s character was a little harder to get a sense of. She was sort of unapproachable in the beginning, and the reader keenly feels that distance since Jaylyn herself emphasizes that point. Then, all of a sudden, there’s this unexplained camaraderie between the two women. While the idea that they have an instant and effortless connection is the point of the story, I still would have appreciated a little more build-up in their relationship. Also, Monika’s behavior is a bit erratic, and while that’s not necessarily a problem, I would have liked to see a clearer reason behind her inconsistency.
Basically, I wanted a deeper connection with Monika’s character. Her romance with Jaylyn was lively and their antics really brought the story to life. But, I wasn’t quite convinced of Monika’s feelings. It was much easier to trust Jaylyn’s feelings instead. The resolution also happened too fast, which heavily contrasted with the slow pace of the beginning. Issues like the conflict with Josh, the director, were too easily resolved. I wasn’t too emotionally invested towards the end because, before I could grasp the meaning of what had happened, the story was already coming to an end.
Still, Mirror Image is truly an entertaining one-of-a-kind read. The international setting, combined with this unconventional couple and this fascinating narrator, all work together to create a real, sexy romantic story. I was sad to see it end so quickly. I’ll definitely keep my eye open and hope for a sequel.
Rated 4 Ravens by Tarsilla!