Author: Nora Roberts
Read copy: Paperback
Published: April 15, 2014
Lila Emerson is fascinated by other people's lives. As a house-sitter, she loves looking after the glamorous, sophisticated homes she could never afford herself. And as a writer, she enjoys watching the world go by, dreaming up stories for the people she sees from her window.
But then one day she witnesses something only too real - the brutal and shocking murder of a young woman living across the street in New York. And now, because of what she saw, Lila's own life is in immediate danger from an audacious, single-minded assassin who kills for profit and for pleasure.
With the police following a false lead, Lila is on her own. Her only hope is to team up with Ashley Archer, an artist with his own complicated reasons for getting involved. Lila wants to trust the passionate, quick-witted Ash - but is she letting her feelings blind her to his motives? Either way, Lila will never watch from the sidelines again...
Oh, wow. Now we're talking!
I usually have a hit-and-miss think with Ms. Roberts' books, because of her heroines. They're always strong and independent women, but sometimes they come across as too strong, too stubborn, too independent, and I end up not particularly liking them, and not particularly understanding what the appeal is for the hero. And sometimes the heroine is just perfect, with 'perfectly proportioned' strength and vulnerability, steel and mushy core, her sense of humor is right up my alley, and she's so cute and adorable trying to wiggle out of the 'thing' with the hero I just love her to bits.
Lila was one of the latter. An amazing heroine, a great NR heroine. Funny, smart, stubborn, capable of taking care of herself, sometimes closed-of, sometimes afraid, caring, giving, sexy without knowing, a writer, and a gipsy. I won't lose words about Ash, the hero, because the guy was a typical NR hero. Not in a stereotype, cardboard cutout kind of way, but he had that NR-hero vibe, that air about him. Strong, silent, sometimes broody, all-the-time protective, and falling head over heels for the heroine in a chapter or two. Unlike NR heroines, I never find any fault in NR heroes, because they're 'normal'. Not overly alpha, not overly beta, but just the right mix to knock you off your feet when you least expect it.
So, with the heroine and hero just perfect, the story could not have been any less. It was pretty much a typical NR suspense fare (again, not stereotypical or predictable, but...just right). There was a hunt for rare objets d'art with some great research on the Romanov family and the Fabergé collectibles thrown in (perfect for a history junky), a murder or two, a crazed killer for hire, a transatlantic trip, a weirdly large family, two wonderful friends, a few pets, great H/h, and, of course, the romance.
The suspense part was edge of the seat, biting of the nails action in parts, the romance was heartwarming, because I just love how Ms. Roberts writes romance (and everything that goes with it), and there was the requisite humor (I love the one-liners Ms. Roberts characters deliver).
I just can't seem to get enough of NR's romantic suspense novels, and I can't seem to write a decent review of it without using stupid superlatives or starting to repeat myself.
Suffice to say, this one was a perfect package. One of those books, you want to read all over again as soon as you finish.
How does she do that?!