Category Romance Review: Tiger, Tiger by Robyn Donald

Tiger, Tiger, Robyn Donald, Harlequin, 1997, cover artist TBD

“I rather wish you were my sister.”

TIGER, TIGER

Harlequin Presents #1931

SPOILER ALERT ⚠

3 1/2 stars

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

The Book

Tiger, Tiger by Robyn Donald flirts with a taboo that’s yet to be crossed in romance. V. C. Andrews might have had some influence on this book.

In the movie Joe Dirt, a loveable, mullet-haired redneck travels across America searching for his long-lost family. In one scene he finds a beautiful woman who could possibly be his sister. Realizing his potentially incestuous attraction to the woman, Joe flees in panic, but then, not wanting to be thought of as a weirdo, returns to explain his problem… after they fall into bed.

Oh hell, the movie tells it funnier than I could:

When reading Tiger, Tiger by Robyn Donald I was reminded of this scene over and over.

The Plot

Lecia Spring first sees Keane Paget at an opera in the park, where a friend points out how alike the two are, so much so that they could be twins. Indeed, while Lecia’s eyes are green and Keane’s blue, they both have honey hair–only his is like dark manuka honey (how authentically Kiwi)–the same cleft chin, strong cheekbones, long straight nose, and tall, confident demeanor.

Looking that much alike, they are instantly drawn to each other, and curious if a common ancestor is the reason for the resemblance, they begin a cordial, yet hesitant, flirtation.

Throughout the book many, many people comment on their striking resemblance, thinking them not mere brother and sister but womb-mates. Lecia and Keane’s relationship is bizarre, but the protagonists let the reader know they too are aware of its forbidden kinky nature.

Lecia thinks on page 31:

Was part of this unsettling, goaded attraction a prohibited thrill at their close resemblance, the way her features were manifested in his more chiseled, hard-edged face?

And then there’s this on page 132:

His feelings were as suspect as hers. The ugly word ‘narcissism’ covered that sort of attraction–making her recall the sad legend of the Greek youth who fell in love with his own reflection and died because he couldn’t see anyone else more worthy of his love… Or was it the pull between them nothing more than an instinctive recognition of blood ties, a recognition she was mistaking for desire?

The thought of finding the male version of myself whom I may be related to as attractive… Just, no… Gross! Yuck!

But in a book, I can read the characters’ stories without queasiness. Ah, twisted romance. I love Harlequin Presents.

Final Analysis of Tiger, Tiger

I enjoyed the Tiger, Tiger, but the middle lags a bit as Lecia and Keane avoid each other. Although we get insight into why Lecia is interested and we know Keane’s past, we can only assume that because he thinks he is SO great, only a woman exactly like him can be his mate.

I think I read the sequel to this book, the one about their children, who get locked up in an attic by their evil grandmother who secretly poisons the kids with arsenic, while they decorate their room with paper flowers.

Oh, of course, Lecia and Keane aren’t brother and sister! There is a logical reason as to why the two look so much alike! Although I have a feeling just like Joe Dirt, those two will be engaging in a lot of bedroom role-playing. 😂

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