11 October 2013

Review: Trapped by Irene Hannon

Slow start but an excellent finish

Laura Griffith hires private investigator James Devlin of Protection Inc. to find her sixteen-year-old half-sister, who has run away in the middle of a St Louis blizzard. The weather has shut down transport, so they know she is still in the city, but the race is on to find her before it’s too late.

I found the first half of Trapped a real struggle to engage with. I didn’t connect with any of the main characters—Laura came across as boring (and not because she’s a librarian. I thought she was boring before that even came up). Dev seemed to be more interested in checking out Laura’s legs than thinking about how to find Darcy (the teens I know don’t phone their friends. They text, email, Facebook and FaceTime them, yet all Dev did was check Darcy’s call records). Darcy, while self-absorbed and unappreciative, at least seemed to think and act like a typical teenage girl (self-absorbed and unappreciative). I didn’t like her, but at least I could understand her.

I also found the story predictable, a problem I’ve had with several recent Irene Hannon romantic suspense novels. I keep hoping she’ll rediscover whatever it was that I so enjoyed about her Heroes of Quantico trilogy, and I keep being disappointed. The writing in Trapped was good, but good writing isn’t enough to overcome lacklustre characters and a been-there plot.

Overall, while I finished Trapped, the first half was a chore and I don’t like it when reading becomes a chore. The second half was fast-paced and exciting, but it was a real struggle to get there. I almost gave up, and that doesn’t happen often. When I want to give up but persevere I usually find the second half even more boring than the first, which makes Trapped the exception that proves my rule.

Trapped is the second in the Private Justice series, but can easily be read as a stand-alone novel.

Thanks to Revell and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review. You can find out more about Irene Hannon at her website.

If you’d like to buy the book or Kindle edition, you can follow the links above to purchase at Amazon. Those Down Under can buy from Koorong (Australia) or Soul Inspirationz (New Zealand). Koorong also sells epub editions.

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