Ellie Price receives a weird phone-call from her father, "Uncle" Baxter, in which dear old, slightly crazy dad goes off on a rail about someone beingEllie Price receives a weird phone-call from her father, "Uncle" Baxter, in which dear old, slightly crazy dad goes off on a rail about someone being after him, having already killed Gray Goose. Ellie, despite not believing a thing coming out of her paranoid father's mouth, still goes off in search for him, determined to bring him back into civilization and on his meds again. The problem is, her father is apparently headed into a cabin in the middle of the Colorado wilderness that will be reachable by car only in summer. So Ellie needs a guide and gets one in the guise of a mountain.
Enormous, taciturn, bearded and scowl-y, George Holloway's preferably mode of conversing is shrugging and an occasional grunt, but Ellie is more than willing to put up with anything, since the mountain of a man makes her feel safe, and obviously knows what he's doing.
Little does she know there's more truth in her father's words than she thinks...And there's someone in the sleepy little town of Simpson that's willing to kill to keep secrets.
After the debacle that was the previous book, this one brought the A-game back. Suspenseful, gripping, intense, with a larger-than-life hero that was the amazing George Holloway (major, major crush, here), and a whopper of an ending, I couldn't have wished for more.
Sure, it had its issues—mainly the loss of momentum once the plot moved from the wilderness to the city, and the fact I couldn't really connect with the heroine (everybody and their uncle wanted me to believe she was cute and lovable and great, but I simply couldn't warm up to her), but the rest of the story more than compensated for it.
George was the lovable one in all his taciturn, grunting glory hiding a vulnerable, innocent core that made me all mushy inside from reading about it. His innocence was the best part of the characterization in this book, providing a great counterpoint to his outward appearance and quiet, intense nature, while also setting this story apart from other stories in the romance category.
The depictions of the hike and the wilderness surrounding George and Ellie were vivid and engrossing, the suspense intense and gripping, rising and abating at just the right moments...And that final paragraph...Oh boy, it made me think of the worse and I sure hope it's just a red herring to keep us guessing and fretting. Because it sure was a doozy. A perfect cliffhanger to make me want to immediately read the next (and final) book in the series....more
Seven months after joining the Field County's Rescue Dive Team, Louise "Lou" Sparks's kick during an exercise dislodges a dead body, bringing it floatSeven months after joining the Field County's Rescue Dive Team, Louise "Lou" Sparks's kick during an exercise dislodges a dead body, bringing it floating to the surface. Feeling guilty for kicking the poor guy, Lou embarks on a DIY detective mission to discover the man's identity, since he doesn't possess his head. To keep things interesting, the leader of her diving team, and her secret crush, grumpy, taciturn, and hot-as-hell Callum Cook offers to help her investigate...And to keep things even more interesting, Lou appears to have gotten herself a stalker that seems to mind a lot that Callum is poaching on his territory.
After the iffy start to this series, I was a bit apprehensive before reading this book, but I needn't have worried. Not one bit.
This was an amazing story. Fast-paced, well-plotted, and well-written action-packed when it needed to be, rife with humor, and with a varied and fascinating cast of characters. I absolutely adored Lou. She was quirky, funny, resilient, sarcastic, smart, wry...I loved her to bits. Her special brand of humor was right up my alley, and if she were real, I'd want her to be my best friend. I suffered with her, I feared with her, I laughed with her, and I loved Callum with her. Because who wouldn't love the guy? I mean, the reader doesn't truly get to know him, since the story is (mostly) told from Lou's perspective, but what I got to see through her eyes was just perfect. Grouchy, growly, snarly and frown-y on the inside, but once those layers were peeled off, thanks to Lou and her special brand of crazy chaos and sardonic wit, the glimpses into his inner layer were sweet and precious. He wasn't a man of many words, but he more than compensated for his taciturn nature with his actions. It's true what they say, that actions speak more than words. The rest of the characters, the search and rescue crew, the cooky smelly guy, and the occasional patron of Lou's coffee shop were appropriately intriguing, there when they were needed, and/or offered an additional laugh or two. I also liked Derek (the hero from the prequel) more in his secondary role in this book than as a hero in his own. The villain might've been a tad predictable if it weren't for all the red herrings thrown into the mix, and he might've also been a little over the top crazy, but it worked, and provided the story with a gripping, action-packed, nail-biting scene.
The "secondary" suspense plot, if it may be called that, since it's obviously part of the main series arc spanning multiple books (an educated guess, since the "main murder" wasn't resolved at the end of the story) is equally intriguing, and I can't wait to see how it pans out. Although it sort of stuck out a bit in this book, since Lou and Callum were pretty much amateur detectives (if they can be called that), and yet they made more progress than the official investigation. That struck me as a little strange and added a weird, unrealistic vibe to the plot. But I guess I'm just picky.
Overall, this was a great intro to the series and I'm looking forward to what comes next....more
Four years ago, he let her go for her own good. Now, as they work together to find two missing girls, they bo***eBook available for free on Amazon***
Four years ago, he let her go for her own good. Now, as they work together to find two missing girls, they both realize their feelings for one another are far from gone.
I don't really know what I expected from this new-to-me author and this new-to-me series, but I guess it was more than I got in this short story.
It was slow, mostly bogged down by the unresolved issues from the MCs past relationship, the characters weren't that interesting (him with a martyr complex and her with a slightly codependent mentality), for two people who were supposed to be searching for two missing little girls they were quick with going all grope-y and moan-y with each other on a derelict shack floor, and the one promising thing (the discovery of a possible arsonist hideout) amounted to nothing.
I guess I'll have to read the next book in the series, then....more