Arousing Love: Good Or Bad?
Our contributor Lauren gives us her take on Arousing Love, a fairly graphic romance aimed at teens:
Everybody loves a good romantic novel now and again, but finding a decent one you can just get immediately stuck into can prove a challenge! Recently I have read a couple of very interesting ones and found a lot of controversy over M.H Strom’s Arousing Love. The novel is targeted at teenage females and is all about a challenging holiday romance between a 15 year old girl and an 18 year old guy. Many reviews have said the book is ‘wrong’ in many different ways, some even saying the religious views expressed are offensive and going against the Christian faith. A few sources have even said: “It’s completely wrong to allow a 15 year old girl to spend so much time alone with an 18 year old and get so far.” Well, I personally found the novel interesting and it immediately grabbed my attention from the first page, but I know many others found it badly written and compare it to books like Fifty Shades of Grey. For this article, I did a lot of deep research on the views of others, the meaning behind the book and the influences it has had on others…
What Is The Book About?
Arousing Love is classed as a teenage novel, but in my opinion it should be aimed at a much older audience. The book is a sweet love story between an 18 year old guy (Zach) and a 15 year old girl (Joanna) who fall in love immediately with each other after they meet on holiday. They get so passionate in their relationship that they begin to think about marriage. Now let’s just stop there and think about this… is it realistic and right to want to let your 15 year old daughter (your only daughter) to marry a guy three years older who she’s only just met? This is the point many reviewers are trying to get across- it’s not a good influence.
The novel may be ‘far-fetched’ in that sense, but I find the story gives a lot of hope as well. It teaches a message that love is out there and that, if you really want to be with someone, you will give up everything to be with them- even a big hobby.
The novel is definitely an attention grabber from the very start, but there are a lot of biblical references throughout the entire book. When I got half way through, I found I was beginning to bore myself, flicking through pages of non-stop Christian quotes (quite literally) and I was beginning to think to myself “Am I wasting my time reading this?”
What Others Say About It
“This book is pretty graphic about foreplay and sex and made my teenage daughter feel uncomfortable. Not recommended for younger teens.” – one particular purchaser’s review on Amazon.com
“I really disliked how God and the Bible were mentioned on almost every page. Don’t get me wrong, I respect Christianity and all that, but this book was really not my thing.” – another purchaser’s view on Amazon
“Arousing Love is indeed an inspiring love story. I enjoyed reading of their seemingly doubtful love immensely, and I do hope those who read this story are just as touched as I was, especially younger individuals” – a positive opinion of the book
“It’s far too religious, not to my liking”- fourth opinion of the book
Yes Or No? Is This Book Worth The Read?
I personally really enjoyed the book, especially the beginning. Some of the language used was magnificent. I think the story line is sweet and it provides some hope for teenagers when thinking of finding love. However, when I got to the middle of the book, it did become all based around Christianity, and I started getting bored of reading it. Some parts of the book were rather graphic, which I wasn’t expecting for a ‘teenage novel’.
I would recommend the book for older audiences if hot romance is your thing, but definitely not for a teenage audience.
Have you read this book? Do you think you will after reading this review? Let us know in the comments sections below!