Anna, a woman who is lying her way through her marriage and relationship with her lover, is laying plans to meet another man, Joe. This man, with baggage of his own, desires to make Anna his prize. Neither of them is looking for a commitment–they have their own supposed committed relationships. Neither of them wants more than a night together, but they both feel the pull that is trying to keep them from ever separating. Anna’s life as a television host, and celebrity in her own right, serves to fascinate him in a way he can’t explain. Her life in Lebanon is one she herself can’t fully explain as she faces the end of what was supposed to be their only night together.
Masks, by Nataly Restokian, details the life of Anna, a highly successful young woman who has managed to make a name for herself in the world despite the challenges she faced growing up. She is outspoken, loved by all who watch her on television, still lacking something in her life. As hard as she has worked and as much as she wants to maintain her lifestyle, Anna can’t help but feel that all of her success has left her empty. Restokian is a masterful storyteller and manages to make Anna relatable and draws the reader into Anna’s fascinating life.
The main character’s history with her family is integral to her success–and her struggle. It is easy to see why Anna fights so hard to make a difference and to make her name synonymous with achievement. Readers will appreciate the description of her youth and her parents’ treatment of her. Many can relate to the sermons she receives from her overbearing mother and the difference Anna’s parents make between her and her sister.
Restokian’s book begins as a torrid romance and soon turns into a touching account of Anna’s past and how the decisions made by both her and her family lead her down a new path–one that she never saw herself needing. I assumed by the tone of the first few pages that Masks would be similar to other romance plots I have read. However, it was soon evident that Restokian took a different tone. The author does not use vulgarity to describe intimate scenes. Instead, she tastefully details touching and loving scenes between Anna and Joe.
I listened to the audiobook version of Masks. The narration is well-done and makes for an easy listening experience. Narrator, Nicole Rene, is adept at tone, making appropriate changes in dialogue delivery, and bringing the reader into the story-line.
Restokian’s work goes far beyond a romance. It speaks loudly and clearly about women’s rights, honor, and determination. Anna, the main character, stands boldly as both a victim of society and an example of survival and triumph. Masks is a must for anyone looking for a romance with an intellectual and poignant message. I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.
Listening Length: 7 hrs 48 minutes | ASIN: B07YVM9TQW