Author: Nora Roberts
Read copy: Mass Market Paperback
Published: April 12, 2011
To most people, Fiona Bristow seems to have an idyllic life-a quaint house on an island off Seattle's coast, a thriving dog-training school, and a challenging volunteer job performing canine search and rescues. Not to mention her three intensely loyal Labs. But Fiona got to this point by surviving a nightmare...
Several years ago, Fiona was the only survivor of the Red Scarf serial killer, who shot and killed Fiona's cop fiancé and his K-9 partner.
On Orcas Island, Fiona found the peace and solitude she needed to rebuild her life. But all that changes on the day Simon Doyle barrels up her drive, desperate for her help. He's the reluctant owner of an out-of-control puppy, foisted upon him by his mother. Jaws has eaten through Simon's house, and he's at his wit's end.
To Fiona, Jaws is nothing she can't handle. Simon, however, is another matter. A newcomer to Orcas, he's a rugged and in-tensely private artist, known for the exquisite furniture he creates from wood. Simon never wanted a puppy-and he most definitely doesn't want a woman. Besides, the lanky redhead is not his type. But tell that to his hormones.
As Fiona embarks on training Jaws, and Simon begins to appreciate both dog and trainer, the past tears back into Fiona's life. A copycat killer has emerged out of the shadows, a man whose bloodlust has been channeled by a master with one motive: to reclaim the woman who slipped out of his hands...
And Ms. Roberts does it (yet) again. I wonder how she accomplishes that? I want to be Nora Roberts when I grow up. I want to be Nora Roberts in my next life. This woman's writing is absolutely amazing.
What I love most about her books is the 'equality' between hero and heroine. Don't expect to find a damsel-i-distress heroine when you open a NR book, and don't expect to find a chest-thumping hero either.
Sure, Simon was a bit on the brooding type, but just enough to keep it real, and though Fiona came off as a bit annoying at times (yes, we know you're strong, we hear you roar, but it wouldn't hurt to let someone help you from time to time), the balance between them was excellently written.
And they literally came alive on the page—along with their four furry companions.
And don't get me started on the whole banter thing, because we might be here until next week. I just love how NR writes her dialogs between hero and heroine—the humor, the spunk, the sass, the sexiness of it all...It really reads like a verbal foreplay. Love it.
I missed a bit more time in the killer's mind (I can't believe I'm writing this, but I did), but this little hiccup didn't deter from my overall enjoyment of the book. And it most certainly won't lower the rating.