Review: Behind the Curtain by Beth Kery

Behind the Curtain
by Beth Kery
Publisher: Berkley Romance
Publication Date: May 2, 2017
Genre: Romance

Cultures clash and passion ignites in the novel that will leave you begging for more—from the bestselling author of The Affair and Looking Inside.

There’s something about this woman…

On a break between overseas jobs, journalist Asher Gaites returns to his hometown of Chicago—and allows his friends to persuade him to check out a hot new singer. At a downtown jazz club, he’s soon transfixed by the lyrical voice and sensuous body of a woman who performs behind a thin, shimmering veil…

…That could bring a man to his knees.

The veil gives Moroccan American Laila Barek the anonymity she needs since she has never been able to reconcile her family’s values with her passion for music. But one man is inexplicably drawn to her. And when Asher confronts her on a subway platform after a gig, he’s shocked to recognize the woman who walked away from him nine years ago…

Laila has never been able to forget the touch, the feel, the taste of Asher. And despite the doubt and fear that wind their way into their lives, they must trust the heat of their desire to burn down the walls the world has placed between them…



My thoughts…

Behind the Curtain is a second chance romance but it’s also a romance between two very different cultures and families. You see, Laila and Asher met when they were younger. Laila was on summer vacation with her whole family (aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents) before starting college, and Asher was on a little getaway at one of his parent’s estates as a college graduation gift. They met and fell in love but had to keep their relationship a secret because of how strict Laila’s family was. Her family would never approve of a non-Moroccan union with their daughter. Needless to say their summer ends with them figuring they’d never see each other again. Fast forward eight years and they bump into each other again at a subway station. Have things changed or are their lives still too different to overcome.

This story starts off in the present time when they first reconnect, but it quickly switches gears to the past. We get to watch as their romance blossoms and as they deal with their differences. I loved the way the author wrote Asher. While he is this rich kid, he isn’t privileged by any means. He wants to make a name for himself and he doesn’t want to take over his father’s business. He also recognizes Laila’s heritage and customs and isn’t afraid to ask her about certain things. I thought his consideration was extremely endearing. While most people would look at Laila and think her weak, I don’t. I grew up as a middle-class white female, but I had a very close friend who is Hmong. Her family was VERY strict. I was never allowed at her house because I was not family, and therefor she wasn’t allowed to my house or any of my birthday parties. Her family was very traditional and my friend did not want to go against her family in any way… but she did secretly date a Caucasian boy in middle school. Basically, what I’m trying to say is, I totally understood Laila’s reservation about going against her parents because I saw it in my friend growing up.

While I do like Asher and Laila I will say that I was a little disappointed in them… especially Laila. Mainly because there is a snippet of cheating in this story. She does fess up to it and breaks it off but it’s there and I know it’s a hard limit for some of you. While it is for me too, it doesn’t happen until you’ve already invested in Laila and Asher. So it’s hard to picture the one without the other.

I thought that Behind the Curtain was a great romance. While there was cheating involved and that’s a hard limit for me, I oddly didn’t get horribly turned off by it. So I suppose that speaks to the author’s writing and the characters themselves. The author was able to weave a story together that mixes a lot of different tropes together, she kept it steamy, and yet still didn’t fully give the characters a happily ever after. It was more realistic and I like that she kept true to the characters.

Favorite quote…

“You’re still existing behind the curtain. That hasn’t changed.”




One Thought on “Review: Behind the Curtain by Beth Kery

  1. I usually hate the cheating trope but since you weren’t totally put off by it, I may put this one on my wishlist. I think what draws me is the different cultures within the story. Brilly review. You have me curious. 🙂

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