Take Me Tonight (Pocket Star) by Roxanne St. Claire is up first, with her latest Bullet Catcher novel. Lucy Sharpe sends one of her finest, Johnny Christiano, to look after her estranged niece, reporter Sage Valentine, when Sage starts digging into the death of her best friend. She's convinced there's no way her friend was depressed enough to commit suicide, and even more convinced her death had something to do with the kidnapping-for-thrills website she joined. And Johnny's cover makes her certain that no matter how attracted she is to him, he's completely unsuitable for a real relationship. I'm not a real fan of this series, but I will say I liked it better than the last one I read. Still, Sage does some really foolish things trying to conduct her investigation, making me think as I was reading, 'stupid, stupid girl'. Which doesn't lead to keeper books for me, I'm afraid. I'm sure fans of the series will feel differently, and that's fine. I just don't love it. It's earned two and a half of Cupid's five arrows.
Another Life (Zebra) by Ann Roth is next. Mary Beth Mason only learns her husband's terrible secret when he has a heart attack in a city where he shouldn't have been. Not only did he lie about his trip destination and reason, but he was 'married' to another woman. Mary Beth and Caroline both have a lot of reasons to hate each other, and even more to hate the man who lied to them both. I enjoyed this one, but I'll tell you right up front, it isn't a romance, and I think the publisher is doing the book and author a terrible disservice by calling it one on the book spine. This is really good women's fiction, with a slight romantic element to it, and the publisher would have done itself and the book a huge favor by marketing it that way. Mary Beth and Caroline overcome much to become friends and even to create their own little family despite the way they met, and the story is very emotional. Good book, just not a romance.
Ice Blue (Mira) by Anne Stuart is next. Summer Hawthorne knew the only way to thwart the slimy guru was to offer her nanny's bowl to an art show. But she hadn't planned on getting kidnapped for it. Takashi O'Brien rescues her from the Japanese cult leader, but is he really a white knight? Not hardly. Taka has come to get the bowl himself, to put a stop to the cult's plans for death and destruction, and his own instructions include killing Summer. But somehow, he can't quite do it, no matter how many opportunities he has. Instead, he keeps saving her life and finding himself more and more involved with her. Great suspense in this one, not to mention a complicated hero and heroine, each with their own demons, all hurtling toward what appears to be an unavoidable tragedy caused by a madman. If you're a Stuart fan, you'll definitely want to add this one to your collection, and if you're a fan of well-done suspense, you should check this one out. It's earned four arrows.
Until next time, happy reading!