Passion and peril.
A killer mystery makes hearts pound faster in Touch of Red (Pocket, $7.99, 368 pages, ISBN 9781501162374) by Laura Griffin. Crime scene investigator Brooke Porter teams up with Detective Sean Byrne from the San Marcos, Texas, PD to solve the homicide of a young woman. Thanks to Brooke's tenacity and attention to detail, she realizes there might be a missing witness to the crime--a child--adding a layer of urgency to an already difficult case. Also complicating matters is the attraction between Brooke and Sean. He makes casual overtures and is initially rebuffed, but his caring nature begins to overcome her resistance. Before he and Brooke began working together, a life-threatening shooting made Sean a new man, one who understands patience and won't take anything, or anyone, for granted. Brooke can't help but admire that in him, and begins to trust him with her heart. Yet as they get closer to revealing the murderer's identity, Brooke's dogged pursuit of the bad guy threatens their happy future. Touch of Red is a fast-paced thrill!
DRUNK ON LOVE
A virgin heroine melts an icy ex-soldier in Can't Let Go (HQN, $7.99, 416 pages, ISBN 9780373803675) by Gena Showalter. Ryanne Wade owns and operates the Scratching Post bar in Blueberry Hill, Oklahoma. She loves the place and all her clientele, except for the disapproving and dour Jude Laurent, who often prowls the floor exuding displeasure from every pore. Of course Ryanne wants to coax a smile from the handsome former Army Ranger, but the man lost his family to a drunk driver and can't lighten up enough to enjoy himself--which only makes Ryanne more determined. Jude doesn't feel alive, even around the beautiful, too-flirtatious-for-her-own-good Ryanne. But he can't ignore his sense of duty when he notices she needs to increase security measures at her bar. Since that's his line of work, Jude doesn't hesitate to take matters into his own hands. Will continued proximity to Ryanne be his undoing--or can a broken man be remade? Showalter's latest is sexy and fun, spiced with a hint of danger.
TOP PICK IN ROMANCE
Mary Balogh pens a tender and touching historical romance in Someone to Wed (Berkley, $7.99, 400 pages, ISBN 9780399586064). Wealthy heiress Wren Hayden has two goals in life--marriage and children. But her past and her reclusive nature have kept her out of society. So she decides to treat the search for a husband like a business transaction, and proposes marriage to the cash-strapped new Earl of Riverdale, Alexander Westcott. Alex is both reluctant and intrigued. He needs a rich wife if he's going to improve the lands he's just inherited, a task he feels duty-bound to do. But is marrying this quiet, veiled stranger, who clearly struggles with unresolved emotional damage, worth it? As he learns more about Wren and she comes to know him and his family, it looks like friendship is the better avenue for them. But Alex can't deny how he's beginning to care for Wren--and how he wants her for his own. This is a beautiful story that is hard to put down and even harder to forget.
BY CHRISTIE RIDGWAY
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|Title Annotation:||ROMANCE; "Touch of Red," "Can't Let Go" and "Someone to Wed"|
|Article Type:||Book review|
|Date:||Nov 1, 2017|
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