I’ve been on a contemporary romance binge read lately. The series in particular I’ve been devouring is called the I-Team series by Pamela Clare. The “I” stands for investigative reporter team; or at least that’s what I think it stands for. The premise of these stories is you have heroine who is a member of this team who, in one way or another, gets involved in serious political drama from basic research on a story. For example, in one of the stories, the heroine is Navajo American and she reports on environmental issues and the happenings on the Native American reservation. During a religious ceremony where they are purifying themselves for one reason or another, police interrupt them and cite them with violating land laws set by the city. Later we learn its a cover up for nefarious, unlawful digging of important Indian artifacts as well as a burial site for murders. Then the bad guy ends up trying to pin it on the reporter and when that doesn’t work, proceeds to try to have her murdered.
Now, you can’t have a heroine without the hero. Well, you could, depending on the book but this is romance so there has to be a hero. The hero in these stories is usually someone who is either involved with the investigation somehow or stumbles upon the heroine in a time when she needs help. In the case of the story above, the hero is a park ranger who has a love for the environment and has been helping to protect it and keeping the peace with the Native Americans. The author used to be an investigative reporter in real life so a lot of the technical and political jargon she includes in her stories have a kernel of truth to them. In her acknowledgements section, she lists people she thanked for helping her get the information correct like park rangers, U.S. marshals, nurses, etc. It’s pretty neat.
So now you have your investigative reporter heroine with her park ranger hero and circumstances bring two strangers together in a dangerous setting. He takes it upon himself to be her protector and she allows it. Then in like a week or two the woman realizes she loves the man, the man doesn’t want long term commitment but at the same time can’t stay away from her while they’re both being hunted by murderers. That’s a big dose of adrenaline thrown in the mix and they can’t help but fall madly in love with each other right? I love these stories even though I find it hard to believe in instant love. Like how does one stranger blindly trust another stranger with her entire life in one moment? I mean he’s a park ranger, or in the other stories, he’s a senator or an ex-con or undercover federal agent so they have tons of combat and survival training and they’re all males who need love in their life so I guess it’s only natural for the heroine to take on the damsel role (not necessarily in complete distress) and it definitely makes for some juicy reading.
Sometimes you get a surprise and it’s the man who knows before the woman but most of the time women know first. You know now that I think about it, my own relationship wasn’t instant love but he definitely knew long before I did. I didn’t have murderers after me, thank goodness, but when you hear that phrase “love is blind” I wonder if it should actually say “love is seeing” because most of the time one knows and just has to convince the other that they know too.
Over the past month and a half I’ve probably been in love with 4 different men. Here’s the best part…I’ve never met them.
If you’ve ever picked up a book you couldn’t put down you’ll understand where I’m coming from. If you’re looking for a book, or a series of books, that you won’t want to put down, I highly recommend trying Judith McNaught . If you like mystery entangled in romance dipped in rich character development this is your girl!
I just finished Night Whispers last night. I wanted to move to a different series this morning but couldn’t bring myself to leave my last relationship with Noah (and of course Sloan). The cool thing about this series is that no one book relies heavily upon another. You have bits and pieces of old relationships and characters that flutter in and out of view but none are really reliant on you reading her other books. …but I bet you’ll want to. 😉
Take this book to the beach, the waiting room, or to bed. …just make sure you grab a glass of wine and your robe because you’ll get sucked in.
“The two of them simply weren’t attracted to just any attractive, eligible man; they were attracted rarely, but when it happened, it was evidently a life-altering experience.” – Night Whispers, Judith McNaught
I just finished a book series that took me longer than usual to read. It was by an author I’ve read before and absolutely loved the first series. My usual reading genres are paranormal romance, sci-fi and contemporary romance/thrillers; sometimes a little bit of historical romance thrown in every once in a while. There are many sub-genres off the main ones such as urban fantasy, steampunk and space operas. Then you have Adult, YA (young adult), NA (new adult) and so on.
The general basis of any book to determine the genre is characters and the world. If your book is set in the 1600’s and has a Downton Abbey feel, you’re looking at a historical romance. But if it its set in the 1600’s and has boulders than can transport you back in time then you’re looking at a historical paranormal romance. Adult genres are usually based off the character’s age. Early 20’s and up is considered adult. 15-18 is young adult. Anything lower than age 15 is not usually a genre I explore; at least for now anyway.
The series I just finished was considered YA and NA. The character started the story at age 18 but ended up being about 23 or 24 by the end of the series. I’m not an expert but blending the lines between a young adult and a “new” adult can come easily to some authors and not so much for others. It’s that stage between leaving school and going off on your own whether it be college or some other route depending on the world you’re in. The story I read consisted of a young girl, a senior in high school, going through a transition from being a regular human to trying to find her place in the world with her friends. She ends up finding out she’s not completely human and that sets up the rest of the books in the series.
When you read a pilot or even watch a pilot you jump end expecting it to start out slow. You know the author (or director) is trying to build your imagination by creating a world and the characters in your mind. They want you to get to know the people and the places. They want you to grow attached to some and hate others. It’s necessary to keep your interest. They want to take you on this amazing, exhilarating, heart pounding, addicting ride. They usually succeed. You dive in deep, get comfortable and ready yourself to ride it out. You get so attached that you can hardly think of anything else except what is going to happen next. You expect the cliffhangers, crave them even because of the feelings they’ll leave you with.
And then you get to the last book in the series. The finale. The world was built. You have guesses, expectations, hopes. This is how I was feeling with the last book in my series. Halfway through I got excited, shocked, and sad. My guesses, expectations and hopes changed. I’m in the last 100 pages. This is it. The war is finally happening! THIS IS IT! And then — fade to black. What the hell? If you aren’t familiar with fade to black it’s essentially when you get the moment you’ve been finally waiting for but instead of getting the moment in detail you get a “5 years later” epilogue that looks back on your moment in a paragraph or two. I’m screaming inside. I feel like I wasted so many sleepless nights. I got past the YA/NA blend, the lame phrases and the questionable missing moments. I had my plot. It grabbed me and I held on! What do I get for that? A rushed ending. Why???
This pretty much ends my rant. I’m going to try a new series by an author I’ve never read before recommended by one of my favorite authors directly on Twitter. Crossing my fingers.