30 March 2012

Review: Deadly Pursuit by Irene Hannon

Romance Writers of America have just released the list of finalists for the 2012 RITA Awards. Finalists in the Inspirational Romance section are:
  • The Christmas Child by Linda Goodnight
  • Deadly Pursuit by Irene Hannon (reviewed below)
  • Katie's Way by Marta Perry
  • The Ladies' Room by Carolyn Brown
  • Love on the Line by Deeanne Gist
  • The Measure of Katie Calloway by Serena Miller
  • My Foolish Heart by Susan May Warren
  • Save the Date by Jenny B Jones
  • To Win Her Heart by Karen Witemeyer (on my Wish List)
Have you read any of the finalists? If so, what is your pick for the winner?

Deadly Pursuit is the second book in Irene Hannon’s Guardians of Justice series, which looks at three siblings ‘bound by a passion for justice’.  This novel is the story of Alison Taylor, a social worker for Child Protective Services in St Louis, Missouri, the sister of the over-protective Jake (a deputy US marshal, and the hero of Fatal Judgment), and Cole (a police detective, who looks like he will be the hero of the third in the series).

Alison has been set up on a date with Mitch Morgan, and ex-Navy SEAL who is Cole’s new partner.  They experience an instant attraction that soon turns protective as Alison finds a ‘gift’ on her front doorstep when he takes her home after a date, and she confesses that she has had some heavy-breathing telephone calls and a previous ‘gift’ of dying flowers.  But it is this latest gift that has Mitch worried, because the gift had an implied threat of escalating violence.  Cole and Jake are equally worried when they find out, and the three men are determined to keep Alison safe – but their adversary is equally determined.

I have long suspected that there are actually only six basic plots for a romance novel, and that Jane Austen wrote one of each.  In reading Irene Hannon’s writing, it would appear that there are only three romantic suspense plots.  Fatal Judgment (the first in the Guardians of Justice trilogy) had clear similarities to Against All Odds, the first in the Heroes of Quantico series.  Deadly Pursuitgave me a similar sense of de ja vu, as it has clear similarities with An Eye for an Eye, the second Heroes of Quantico novel.  I truly hope that this does not continue, as while I really enjoy Hannon’s writing, I want to read a new story not a revision of a previous novel with new characters.  This would be my one criticism of Deadly Pursuit– while it was a quick and enjoyable read, it was not sufficiently unique to be excellent or truly memorable.  I hope that Cole’s story will be an improvement.

If you enjoy romantic suspense and have not read the Heroes of Quantico series, you will probably enjoy this.  Otherwise, I'd suggest you borrow this one or wait for it to be offered free on Kindle. Umm, so you can probably guess I'm not backing this to win the RITA...

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