Review: The Hero (Thunder Point, Book 3) by Robyn Carr

The HeroReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Devon McAllister is carrying her three-year-old daughter and then is lucky enough to catch a ride to Thunder Point. I hope if you’re reading this book that you’ve also read the other two in the series. You will continue getting to know about the town and some of its inhabitants. It will also leave you wanting to pack your bags and moving there.

In this story, we finally get to know the character named Rawley Goode. Rawley is a very caring soul and I wish there were more people like him in this world. Robyn makes me wonder if she has fashioned him after someone she knows.

Spencer Lawson is the new Athletic Director at the high school. He and his ten-year-old son, Austin, are staying at Cooper’s old place for now. He also has something in common with Devon.

While reading this book, in the beginning I kept thinking of Devon as a man – I have a nephew of the same name. The difference is that he spells his name with an “I” and she spells her name with an “O”. So now that I have that figured out, I don’t have that problem any more.

Robyn has put an interesting twist in this book – Devon has two men to choose from and both men have children. Scott is a doctor and Spencer is a coach – what an interesting dilemma. What a great reason to keep reading in order to find out who wins her heart.

This isn’t just Devon’s story. We get to see what’s happening with the other characters that we’ve come to love in the first two books. This book will have you smiling – our author knows exactly how to please her readers. She also creates a town where everyone cares about everyone else.

In my opinion this is a series that would be a good fit for the Hallmark Channel. Yes, there’s some violence but that is part of where Devon came from so it needs to be there. It also makes me wonder as to the type of research Robyn needed to do in order for the storyline to at least appear accurate. She also knows when to add something that will have the reader on the edge of their seats and holding our breaths until we know that everything is all right.

A great author knows how to create believable characters. It makes me wonder if she questioned any males to find out how they would behave during certain situations – this would include both civilians and men in the military. Or does she just instinctively know how to get these characters right? You will be happy to know that the next book in the series, titled The Chance, is due out in March 2014.

[Rating:4]

Buy: The Hero (Thunder Point)

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Review: Extreme Measures by Rachel Carrington

extreme measuresReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Stuart O’Malley and Arlin Murphy are found in a cell located at Attica Prison and are planning their escape. Matt Giles’ duty is to try to recapture them. Rachel also lets us know that he has a personal connection to the case.

Erin Prescott is a waitress/owner of a coffee shop. One day at work she sees her ex-husband. There is one scene where Rachel has the couple spending time together and you can just about feel the tension between the two of them.

Rachel does a great job of showing how “nasty” Stuart and Arlin are. She also knows how to build the suspense and that will have you holding your breath. It will also have you wanting to turn the page so that you can find out how everything ends. It goes to show how desperate some people can become and how it can affect the people around them. I also have to wonder the amount of research that needed to be done in order to get all the facts and situations to sound believable.

This is a book with mystery, action, and suspense that starts right from the beginning. If you’re looking for a book that has lots of romance in it, you won’t find it here. But if you want a book that has lots of suspense and then ends with the romance this book is for you. If you have read other books by Rachel this is also a book that you will want to add to that list. I also felt that this is one of those stories that would be great as a movie.

[Rating:4.5]

Buy: Extreme Measures

Review: Yes by R. J. Lawrence

yes rj lawrenceReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Hannah is waiting for Ronnie to come in. Ronnie appears to be a very self-centered man. He also seems to be totally clueless where Hannah is concerned. Courtney is Hannah’s sister and they’re in Las Vegas together. Hannah goes to work with her sister and that’s where she meets Dominic Montero. Dominic is a man of mystery.

While reading this story, R.J. has kept me guessing as to what type of story this was going to be. I also found that R.J. is something of a mystery. One thing I don’t have to guess about is how erotic, hot, and dark it is. There are times that I felt like I was a voyeur.

When you get to the end of this tale, R.J. lets you know that this is a series. If you are like me and want to know what happens to Hannah and her sister, Courtney, we’ll just have to wait and see what happens next in book two. It’s a quick read so if you only have a short amount of time this is a perfect fit.

I tried to do a search on the web for R.J. but came up empty except for Amazon and GoodReads. I’m hoping that as R.J. writes more that there will be more of a presence so we can see what else our author has in store for interested readers.

[Rating:4]

Buy: Yes

Review: The Exceptions by David Cristofano

the exceptions David CristofanoReviewed by Karin

The Exceptions by David Cristofano is the follow-up to The Girl She Used to Be, which was an Edgar Award-Nominated book. Either book stands alone.

It’s rare for me to find books that I enjoyed so much — and also are different and unexpected. Not really a romance, but a romance. Not really suspense, but definitely mafiosi. Not really romantic suspense, but a bit of terror, which is one-sided, and some well-earned violence, some of which might be over the top, but as you would expect for mafia.

The Exceptions is different, because in many ways it duplicates the first book, but adds additional information.

Melody has been in protective custody under witness protection, from the time she was a little girl. Her parents have been murdered while under protection.

In this book, we become privy to more of the inner thoughts of the protagonist Jonathan (Little Johnny) Bovaro. We see how what happened in his childhood has affected him his whole life. We see how he has loved Melody (under all her different aliases) from that point in time and has seen himself as her protector, which he is in many ways. In some ways, he is like a stalker, for he has watched her from afar, always telling his family, who has ordered him to kill her, that he cannot find her. She, of course, does not know this, so for her, their meeting is only a couple of days. Should she trust him or not? He is clearly able to deliver crushing violence.

And he definitely loves her, which he ultimately proves, and she loves him, just that quickly.

I don’t want to give any of it away, but there are some twists and turns. Some clever surprises. And a good ending. There is even a little door open for perhaps a third book, because Jonathan is told he owes the government agent. Will he come to collect? And what possible story could there be in that? I would definitely read it.

It is definitely a character study, very well done, and he changes under her influence, even though their meeting is in the past in the first book. How it is all resolved is part of the fun. Jonathan proves he is adept at navigating the morass of government agencies, as well as ferreting out the moles, for there are two. Then how to keep her safe — and how to keep him safe, that’s the story.

[Rating:5]

Buy: The Exceptions

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Review: The Girl She Used to Be by David Cristofano

girl she used to beReviewed by Karin

A different romance
Not exactly a romance; almost a character study of the two main characters; yet a romance. This is a thinking man’s (or woman’s) romance.

I have to admit I started with the last chapter, then read the next to last, etc. for a few chapters, then reread from the beginning. I had to know how it ended before I began.

The story: Melody Grace McCartney has been a lot of different people over her 26 year lifetime. When she was 6, she and her parents witnessed a horrific mob hit by the Bovaro family. Since then, they have been on the move in the witness protection program, though her parents were later murdered. Their testimony didn’t matter in the the case against Tony Bovaro, because the elder Bovaro got off. Seemingly it did matter in a lot of peripheral cases, though that doesn’t hold any significance for Melody.

She contacts the program again, claiming she has been found, simply because she is bored.

And now as she is being moved again, the younger Bovaro shows up with orders to kill her, but he has other ideas. He has the crazy idea that he can set her free to find her own self, when she doesn’t even know who she is. Will his plan work?

In the meantime, she is pulled back by the witness protection program who finally offers her an offer that might mean something. They treat criminals in the program better than they do innocent witnesses. Which will she choose?

Jonathan Bovaro is already in love with her, with the real her, with the her that has been so many different people. He knows them all. And their two lives are not so very different in many ways.

The math: She’s a mathematician and in her most recent life, the program set her up to teach math. (Never mind she has no real credentials.) How she grades her average class is a sweet revelation. The sense of certainty that is math pervades a lot of the book and how she reasons.

I thought it was clever to start each chapter heading with an algebraic equation. I thought they might be a title for the chapter, some cryptic thing, but once I figured out chapter 2 and chapter 5, I had a pretty good idea, then I had to figure out what some of the symbols meant, because I have long ago forgotten them, though I used to love algebra.

At one point she is bothered by three young men. Her put down of the young man that comes over to her sounds like a mathematician — and is surely one for the books.

My take: This book is well written. There is much to like about the book!!! My only reservation is that Jonathan is a kind of loose cannon, with a short trigger. He has no problem with violence, but he has never killed before. I wondered how little it might take for him to turn against her and how far that violence would then go. I’m guessing RL might go that way, but this is a book.

I understand there is a sequel. The Exceptions.

[Rating:5]

Buy: The Girl She Used to Be

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