Sue "DavinciKittie" Brown-Moore's Reviews > Rescuing Rayne

Rescuing Rayne by Susan Stoker
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really liked it
bookshelves: men-in-uniform, delta-force, contemporary-romance

My first impression of this book was, 'yes please, I'll have some more'. This being my first peek at the writing of Susan stoker, I was excited at just how good this could get. This book has almost all the hallmarks of my ideal story—beautifully layered romantic tension and easy, natural foreplay, characters with standout personalities who are generally good people, a protective man with serious skills (at work and in bed), and a woman who is smart, savvy, careful, and independent.

The first sex scene builds and builds, amping up the heat and really drawing things out. Not many authors take the time to layer foreplay so thoroughly, especially with emotional nuances in addition to physical. Ghost claims to not be a romantic but he is, deep down. He's also a sensualist, and that brings some crazy sexy energy to their lovemaking.

Earlier I said "almost all the hallmarks of my ideal story". That's because this story doesn't separate the scenes into different character perspectives. One paragraph we're in his head and the next we're in hers (called "head hopping" or "omni perspective", depending on how it's implemented). Way back in the day, when I was reading the old-school bodice rippers, this was the standard style and I didn't know any better. But the trends have changed (thankfully) and head hopping is one of my pet peeves now. Aside from this, the writing is exceptionally well done and I should be able to really sink into the characters...but I can't, because I never know whose head ill be in next. This style is, unfortunately, distracting and disappointing to see in a story that has such otherwise stellar quality. After a while, it grew on me a little, but I still found the character perspective switches a jarring experience even to the end of the story.

This book could have been half the size and still ended with a satisfying HEA. But Stoker takes the emotional arc even further, really focusing in on the fact that these two really don't know each other, and the level of information withholding he's going too (for his job) have to do will put a huge strain on their long-term relationship. It's more real than a simple HEA, and as powerful in its own way.

Susan Stoker has her own Kindle World. How has she stayed off my radar this long?

My final score is a 4.5/5. The only think keeping me from a full five stars is the (to me really irritating) head hopping/omni perspective. I heavily prefer two-person limited.

If you like books like this one, you might also like Striking Distance by Pamela Clare. It was my 2013 GraveTells Romance Book of the Year:
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Reading Progress

April 5, 2018 – Started Reading
April 6, 2018 – Finished Reading
May 9, 2018 – Shelved

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