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Another Zapata book that's best savoured slowly
on 3 February 2018
Mariana Zapata writes books that are best savoured slowly and From Lukov With Love is no exception. I would not call it a slow burn romance. For me, it was more an exploration of Jasmine Santos’ character and the self-awareness that comes to her as she is faced with professional and personal issues.
Zapata has great talent when writing about and slowly exposing her heroine’s vulnerabilities and Jasmine is no exception. We get to see the highs and lows and the frustrations of being a professional athlete that’s not at the top of her game. It is humbling and at times painful to read. It’s especially painful when Ivan Lukov, a champion many times over, offers Jasmine an opportunity that seems too good to be true.
Ivan and Jasmine are no strangers to one another. They have skated at the same facility for years and Jasmine's good friend is Ivan’s sister. Irrespective of their constant bickering and insults, it’s clear from the outset that Ivan’s feelings towards Jasmine extend beyond the professional. And there are some wonderful moments when Ivan’s support of Jasmine, both physically and emotionally, is truly romance book worthy. Frustratingly, this attraction between them remains in the background for the majority of the book, including Jasmine’s awareness of Ivan’s feelings for her.
When hate becomes love, it truly is like the flip of a coin. All of a sudden they are in love and that’s it. I do believe they are in love but I wish they were more vocal about their journey to this point. I particularly wish we spent more time with Ivan and learned more about him earlier in the book, especially his thoughts and feelings about Jasmine before his declarations in the final stages of the book.
Overall, From Lukov With Love is a good read. I enjoyed it but it’s not my favourite Zapata book.