As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
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Hodder, 17 November 2016. ISBN: 978-1-444-79792-3
Unforgiving terrain and Arctic storms form a convincingly hostile
backdrop to this dramatic suspense novel – and as if that wasn’t enough menace,
there’s a small army of gun-carrying bad guys on the loose as well.
After a brief prologue to
sketch some background detail, we are thrown straight into the first storm, off
the coast of a small Alaskan island inhabited mostly by birds. Dr Gina
Sullivan, a member of a research team studying the avian numbers and behaviour,
is on her way back to base in a small boat when a small plane drops out of the
sky and deposits a mysterious and extremely hunky stranger in the increasingly
ferocious water close by. She has to rescue him, of course, but when he throws
her radio in the sea, and despite the literally Arctic conditions tries to stop
her lighting a fire once they reach land, she begins to wonder what she has let
herself in for.
The drama which plays itself
out is reminiscent of old Alistair MacLean thrillers: who does the hero/heroine
trust? What is really going on? Who are the good guys, and how will they escape
the mounting jeopardy?
And jeopardy there is, in
bucketfuls. Murder, near-lethal weather and pursuit over snow-slicked mountains
by well-armed villains are only the half of it. And through it all, on
practically no sleep and very little food, our hero and heroine manage to fit
in several bouts of mind-blowing sex, as befits a novel dubbed romantic
Karen Robards knows how to
construct a hero. Cal Callahan (the hunky stranger) is large, muscular and
devastatingly handsome, shrugs off a bullet wound as if it was a broken
fingernail, and possesses survival skills we ordinary mortals can only read
about. Gina Sullivan is stunningly beautiful, much hardier than she thinks she
is (having been dismissed by her action-man father as ‘domestically inclined’),
and feisty to the point of overcoming crippling phobias which emanate from episodes
in her past that would have destroyed most people.
The narrative is slow to get
going; it takes Gina almost half the book to decide to trust Cal. But the
second half is pacy, hard-hitting and full of incident, and the pair’s
climactic escape from the island made me hold my breath. It’s easy to forgive
an occasional tendency to tell-not-show, and a lapse or two into twee language
when the romance is centre stage. This is romantic suspense at its most
Reviewer: Lynne Patrick
Karen Robards is
the internationally bestselling author of over forty romantic suspense novels,
which have regularly appeared on the New York Times, USA Today and Publishers
Weekly bestseller lists, among others. She is the mother of three boys and lives
with her family in her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.
Lynne Patrick has been a writer ever since she could pick up a pen,
and has enjoyed success with short stories, reviews and feature journalism, but
never, alas, with a novel. She crossed to the dark side to become a publisher
for a few years, and is proud to have launched several careers which are now
burgeoning. She lives on the edge of rural Derbyshire in a house groaning with
books, about half of them crime fiction.