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Monday, July 16, 2012

My Thoughts: A Season of Eden by Jennifer Laurens

He's my teacher. I shouldn't be alone with him. But I can't help that he's irresistible. I let the door silently close at my back. He stared at me, and a taut quiet stretched between us. "I like hearing you play," I said, moving toward him. He turned, in sync with my slow approach. He looked up at me but didn't say anything. I rested my clammy hand on the cold, slick body of the baby grand. "May I?" The muscles in his throat shifted, then he swallowed. "Eden." My knees weakened, like a soft tickling kiss had just been blown against the backs of them. "Is it okay?" I asked. His gaze held mine like two hands joined. He understood what I was really asking. "Let me stay," I said. "Please." "You're going to get me in trouble,"

Student/teacher relationships have been EVERYWHERE lately. Television, movies, books. It really is all over the place. And I have been basically obsessed with it from the very beginning. I can't say I know why. Mostly because I am not sure how the individuals involved think it could possibly work. Actually, it goes beyond that. I cannot fathom how they could even start in the first place. Therefore when Laura at The Reading Nook mentioned A Season of Eden by Jennifer Laurens, in one of her book hauls, I knew I needed to read it.

I was expecting big things from A Season of Eden. I expected it to explain Why a student/teacher relationship would develop into something romantic. I wanted it to explain to me how such a relationship could be maintained and I wanted it to explain to me how it could possibly be okay that a teacher be romantically involved with a student.

A Season of Eden was interesting. I say this because it had me cheering for the relationship. By the end of this book I was rooting for Eden and James. I wanted them to be together. They were so sweet and cute together. James was level head for Eden and she was... well, she did nothing for him, but he was great.

The story is about eighteen year old Eden, a spoiled rich kid who gets everything she wants as her father is to busy with his second wife and his job to pay much attention to his only daughter. So her buys her things. Eden is bitter about this and she is also missing her mother who died when she was young. Essentially Eden is not a nice person. But she's not a bad person either. It's hard to explain exactly what she is.  She was just meh. so when she decides to take an easy credit music class during her last semester of high school where she meets Mr. James Christian. Her 22 year old, fresh out of college choir teacher, her world is rocked. She realizes things about herself she previously chose to ignore.

Their connection is almost instant. Almost. What I kind of liked about this book was Eden's transformation. I say kind of, because Eden's character does a complete 180 which she attributes to Mr.Christian. I am not a fan of the theme of girls changing for a guy (good or bad), I'd much rather they change for themselves. But I also think that Mr.Christian helped Eden realize certain things about herself. He encourages her but doesn't enable her. He tells her when she's being immature and unreasonable. He takes her down a few notches. This is amusing.

Although the chemistry between the two is instant they don't jump into a relationship and I am not even sure if I could say they really have a full blown relationship.  That's what makes A Season of Eden so interesting. You're kind of waiting for something to happen, for the shoe to drop. But does it ever?

I enjoyed this novel and I got through it pretty fast, but I wouldn't say that the writing was anything special. It was pretty okay. I would have liked to see certain scenes, situations and themes embellished a little. Some things were left a little vague others felt a little rushed. I also wouldn't say A Season of Eden answered all the questions I had. I don't know why student/teacher relationship would turn romantic, I sort of get how they thought it would be maintained and A Season of Eden did explain to me why they thought it would be okay. In this situation specifically.

Overall, this was an enjoyable novel and I would recommend it to anyone who has the same obsessions over taboo student/teacher relationships as I do. Aria/Ezra anyone? (Pretty Little Liars reference).I had to stop watching that show because they thought of them getting caught totally stressed me out. But don't expect any type of in depth Aha moment from this one. It won't give it to you. I am curious to read more books on this theme so if you have any recommendations please let know. I'll look into them.

With that said...

~Happy Reading Everyone!

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  1. I tried to read this, but Eden was so unsympathetic, I DNFed the book :(

    Have you read Slammed? Similar theme, awsesome writing.

  2. I enjoyed reading this book as well. I'm fascinated with the student-teacher relationships as well and I'm always intrigued by how they think it will turn out. Great review!

    Ange @ Moonlight Reader

  3. I can't think of one book I've read about a student/teacher relationships, this one might have to be my first, because, like you, I'm curious as to how the 'couple' could think the relationship would work. And yeah, even though it takes James to make Eden realize she has some growing up to do, I think that just goes to show that the two should be involved.

    Very thoughtful review. I hadn't heard of this book before, so thanks for sharing, Sara.

  4. I've had this book for quite awhile. It sounds good, but I just don't see how it can work. I'm glad you enjoyed the story, despite your ambivalence towards Eden. Thanks for a great review!

  5. I've never even heard of this before!I find Student/teacher relationships really fascinating too it's like an accident I can't look away from hahah. This one sounds really good with great characters I love how you describe Eden and her character growth and changes throughout to reflect the story. I'll have to keep an eye out for this one!

  6. I've never heard of this one before but I too am obsessed with the taboo teacher/student relationship. I've added it to my wishlist, Great review!
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