Dreams and Desires by Louis Make published by Sapphire Press ISBN 978-0-7957-0432-1 in Cape Town.This is a South African romance book about Moyomhle an uptight woman who meets Zakhele who turns her life upside down by breaking all her defenses. Strong echoes of love are embedded in the book. It shows how love makes its way into people’s lives no matter the circumstances.
The characters Moyomhle and Zakhele have found themselves in the game of love. Moya represents a lot of women in this world. The type of woman, who has met men that have lied, cheated and misused her. These experiences have shaped who she is now, a no nonsense woman who does not take men at face value. Life does that to people, women in particular and one feels sorry for her but at the same time we can not blame her because she is trying to protect herself. The journey the book takes us on is one were we hope things turn out differently for her this time around. Will he prove her wrong or will he affirm her view of men.
Moya is a headstrong and not willing to take risks without knowing what may come out of it character. This had a big impact on me because I believe that women should not be afraid to take control of their lives especially when it comes to avoiding situations that can lead to them getting hurt. The last thing one wants is to be taken advantage of and the last thing one wants to read about is reading about a fellow woman being mistreated. Moya’s actions are therefore encouraged.
Moya never believed that a man like Zakhele would be good for her or whether she would be good enough for him. Certain aspects of who he was made her believe that it would not work between them but it is these very aspects of Zakhele that brings their love story together. As I read the book I began to think maybe she was right but then as I delved deeper I realized that love has no conditions just like how life just happens love happens too.
Zakhele the uber male character that has women falling at their knees for him is the stereotypical male character when it comes to being tall, dark and handsome and smooth talking. However the way he approaches love is different to most men, he has the right intentions, and he knows what he wants and goes for it, that is, he pursues Moya. What I liked most about him is that he acknowledged that love grew in his heart and that if Moya was not keen he would let her go because he loved her and hoped maybe one day love will grow within her too.
I have been in love and have lost it myself but this book made me feel like I had found love again. The story is about how one finds love and shuns it away because of the fear of the unknown and the lack of belief that someone can truly love you without any hidden intentions, without the pain and heartbreak that comes with the lies and deceitfulness that love comes with at times. This why “She couldn’t expose herself to him, couldn’t say those words out loud… She couldn’t admit that she’d fallen for the sweet words of yet another egotistical playboy”. This is often true for most women and Moya speaks directly at the reader as her emotions resonate with how most of us often feel.
The reason I loved this book and found it an enjoyable read was because the author was able to make me relate with the main characters as their situation is one often felt by many people around the world. I related to the leading female character because her response to love is often one that most women face because we are so used to men playing games that when love really arrives we are too blind to see it or believe in it or mainly we see it but look the other way because to feel the aching heartbreak that love brings is just too much to bare.
Dreams and Desires has interesting lead characters, one asks why Moya is so difficult but at the same time I sided with her. The mystery of the lead male character and were his intentions lie are page turners. Will Moya ever open her heart to love? This question ran through my mind as I kept turning the pages. One wonders were her heart will be at the end of it all. We get to know more about the characters and we fall in love in with them as we root for Moya to find love. Moya’s character does develop as the book goes on in terms of her beliefs and perceptions towards men.
The theme of this story is romance. It is a traditional love story and allows the reader to escape. We often face the same situations in life and therefore this book shows us how others deal with similar love or relationship situations. No matter who you are or what you have been through one thing we all have yearned for at some point in our lives is love and this book made me realise that love conquers all no matter how dark the situation.
This novel is for readers who believe in the complexities of love and understand that love does not always come easily. It is a book that will appeal to anyone who loves a good love story and the hopeless romantics. I have never heard of men who love romance novels but I am sure that this book is targeted at women of all ages because love finds women at all ages and this book brings romance and love to the readers.
The writing style is simple and informal, it allows for love and heartbreak undertones. I loved every aspect of this book because it was real and the emotions were real. It shows what love is about and that is the true essence of this book that love does happen no matter how hard your heart is when the right type of love comes along it will melt you because that love becomes yours no matter how hard you try to fight it. Moya’s words describe this perfectly “Moya’s inability to reject those flowers was evidence of the chink in the steel wall she had carefully rebuilt around her heart”
Lessons are learnt by Moya as she discovers the joys and pains of love. Her opinions change towards the end of the book and this allows the reader to realise that one only realizes what they had when it’s gone and if you do not fight for it you will never know what will have come out from it. Moya’s dreams become her desires in reality because she learns to embrace what love is really about no matter the outcome.
The imperfectness of love is portrayed in this book. One realizes that love comes when you least expect it and from the person you least expect to get it from. It is not like careers which are often planned. True love grows and comes from within and no matter how strong or independent a woman is if that feeling engulfs you it is one that can not be easily shaken off. As Moya falls in love with Zakhele the emotions she feels are felt by the reader too. Her love for Zakhele leaves an imprint in our hearts and gives hope to those who have lost love or had their hearts toiled with that their day to fully embrace love again will come too.
The author Louise Make is thirty, Xhosa and Capetonian by birth. She comes from a family of strong women. Her family background may be the reason why her books have strong, independent female lead characters such as Moya in the book Dreams and Desires.
Her other work includes Five-star Seduction and this further emphasizes how most of her leading ladies are career women who are not ready for love and attraction. They are independent and do not want to be men’s playthings. However she leans past the male stereotypes in that these men are more serious about love and relationships than most.
This book made me believe that as much as love sometimes only seems to be real in books and dreams it is possible to have it in real life too. A love that truly exists for two and no more is shown perfectly in this book. The belief I had in Moya in the beginning of the book is one that stays on after closing the book.
“You’re taking me on the best adventure of my life. The thought of building a home with you excites me more than anything else. I want a family with you, my lovely – and I want us to grow together. I’m done chasing thrills. I have everything I need right here with you”. Now tell me that this statement is something you can’t believe in because I know I sure can.