Review: A Touch of Frost by Jo Goodman

Review: A Touch of Frost by Jo GoodmanA Touch of Frost by Jo Goodman

Genres: Historical Romance, Western Romance
Published by Berkley on 6 June 2017
Pages: 416
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
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three-half-stars      four-flames

After his train is robbed at gunpoint, Remington Frost awakens from a blow to find the bandits gone...along with the woman he was shadowing for protection. No stranger to risk, Remington will do what it takes to bring Phoebe Apple to safety and her kidnappers to justice. But ransoming Phoebe is just the start of trouble...

Phoebe is shocked to learn that her mysterious rescuer is none other than Remington Frost, the son of her sister's new husband. Home at Twin Star Ranch, she falls happily into western life--and cautiously in love with Remington. But danger hides close to home, and their romance illuminates a web of secrets and betrayal that may put the rancher and his intended bride past the point of rescue.

The Delight

Meet the train, ride along, keep the young woman from harm, easy right?  A train robbery, a kidnapping, and a ransom note later has Remington Frost wishing he’d never received his father’s message.  Sounded like an exciting opener that I couldn’t wait to jump on board for the ride.

Review

This was a blend of western, mystery, and romance with quite the opening scene and a situation that got more complicated as it went along.  A Touch of Frost was a good one and I enjoyed it, but it didn’t completely get there for me due to a few little niggles rather than one issue.  This is not the first time that I found the author’s writing style, particularly with the dialogue, distracting.  I guess it is what it is.  I also felt like I was getting in at the midway point of this story and the tension and conflict was already in place even as other aspects were in the introduction.  It wasn’t bad, but just took some adjusting.  I felt we got to know Phoebe and Fiona a lot better than Remington who wasn’t drawn with as much depth.  He was good and likeable, but not as deeply known.

That said, the humor and fun flirty-ness between Phoebe and Remington was the best.  My favorite part of the story.

The pacing had a few moments when I got distracted, but generally I was fine as it set off with an exciting beginning and then drew back to slowly introduce the characters further, grow the romances, and do some twisting and revealing near the end.

There are multiple narrators including the bad guys which did detract from the suspense a little as a result.  I felt there was a lot going on and for the most part I kept up.  I had the kidnapping for ransom figured out quickly, but that other twist definitely took me by surprise.

So, there were some smaller things that stacked up so that this was a good one rather than a great one.  I liked what I got of the story which had some fun, flirty humor as part of the romance and an interesting mystery element and would recommend it to those who enjoy spicy historical romance in a western setting.

My thanks to Penguin-Random House for the opportunity to read this one in exchange for an honest review.

Challenges

Romance Roundabout #150 HR
New Release #78

Recommendations

Home by Morning by Kaki Warner Review Broken by Laura Wright Review Paradise Valley by Rosanne Bittner
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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • Sorry that this was good but not great. It does sound rather interesting. For me, it kind of throws the story off when I get to know one character more than the other.

    • That’s okay, Angela. I should have more accurately put that it was ‘good enough’. I did like it, but there was a few things… yes, like the balance in the characters. I never felt I was able to get to know Remington as well.

  • Kristina Stanley

    Thanks for sharing your review with us. #getsocial17 Kristina @ http://www.KristinaStanley.com

    • You bet, Kristina!

      Thanks for dropping by for the event. 🙂

  • Sounds weirdly interesting to me. Love the cover!

    • Ha, that is great, Mahevash. Sometimes a book just has that pull. I like the cover, too. 🙂

  • joelle_049

    Popping in from the get social event.Added you to our following list.Happy Reading! Joelle from Angels with Attitude Book Reviews.

    • What a pleasure! Thanks for dropping by, Joelle! 🙂

  • Debbie Haupt

    I saw this reviewed somewhere else maybe on Herding Cats don’t remember but I like the cover and you seemed to like it okay too. Its on the list!

    • Ahhh, glad I could nudge you toward a good one, Debbie. I like seeing more than one review on a book I’m interested in, too.

  • even if it is not excellent, it looks like a good book in a whole. It is a new one to me

    • Yes exactly, Melliane! Well worth the reading. 🙂

  • I really like twists that take me by surprise. Sounds like a good book.

    • It was neat how she wove the mystery into the historical western setting.

  • This sounds like a fun one…don’t know that I’ve ever read a book that started with a train robbery! 🙂 #getsocial17

    • Haha! Yeah, that caught my attention, Melissa. 🙂

      Thanks for the viist!

  • Now this is more my kind of western. I do think I would enjoy this one! 🙂

    • Super! Glad I could point you to one that’s right up your alley, Melissa. 🙂

  • Sometimes little things can add up to be worse than one bigger issue. Good humor and banter is definitely a plus though.

  • RO

    I totally love the name Remington Frost, but I’m not totally sure this would be a book for me. Your review was super! Hugs…

    • That was a fun name for him. There was even a bit of banter from the heroine about naming their kids after other riflemakers of the time. LOL

  • It sounds like there was a little too much going on in this one. It sounds like this book had some really good things in it as well. I haven’t read Jo Goodman yet but I think I have a book or two of her work somewhere around here.

    • Yes, there was a lot going on, particularly near the end when the reveals started. I like her books and have loved a couple, but her dialogue style can feel stilted and formal when I think of people being more laid-back in westerns. But worth a try when you get the chance, Carole! 🙂

  • Bookworm Brandee

    I can see where things could be a little distracting in this one…and it’s a shame Remington wasn’t as fleshed out as he could have been. I am happy it wasn’t a total loss though. The flirty banter sounds fun!

    • Yes, there was quite a bit to keep me busy in this one, Brandee. I liked him, especially when he got witty with her so yes, I do wish I could have gotten to know him better. 🙂

  • When you feel like you came into the story and it had already started without you there’s a problem. The niggles don’t sound great either. Or distracting dialogue. I am glad it was mostly good though!

    • The opening scene was alright, but then it kept referring to events that came before and not in flashbacks so I felt like half the story was summarized in snippets while the other half continued forward. And yeah, the dialogue felt stilted.

      But, that said, I still enjoyed it overall. Thanks, Lorna!

  • This sounds good despite the distracting bits.

    • It was definitely a good one and worth the read. I like her books, but struggle with small stuff.

  • I’m still working on this one but, yeah, I’m thinking more on the good side of things than great ,too. It’s moving very slowly for me which I’m not used to with hers. I do like Remington, though 🙂

    • The middle of this story did plod. I was waiting for more excitement and danger, too. But yes, Remington was swoony. 🙂