Series: #4 Dare Island
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Berkley
Released on October 7, 2014
I love going back to Dare Island each time there’s a new release in the series and even though the characters aren’t one of the amazing Fletcher family for the first time, it was still as heartwarming and as engaging as ever. The story shifts to one of the intriguing side characters and the transition worked well as the series continues on.
The book could be read as a standalone or out of order in a pinch since the main story arc is contained in this book, but some of the side threads do have moderate connections to the previous characters in the series.
Jack Rossi, new Dare Island Police Chief, starting over after a failed marriage and a resignation from his job as a police detective back in Philly, is settling in to the new world of small town policing. He encounters a stranger at Jane’s bakery and is intrigued the moment he sees her. She seems familiar for some reason under the multiple piercings, tattoos, and dark eyeliner, but it isn’t until well after their first encounter that he learns who she is and why she is staying on Dare Island. Jack hasn’t been interested in a woman since his ex-wife and he’s learned his lesson about getting involved, but Lauren is only on vacation. He can do temporary. Only after a while, it doesn’t feel like temporary.
Lauren Patterson, grad student psych major, is famous now for being the hero in a bank robbery gone bad into a hostage situation that she helps salvage when she talks down the robbers. Her follow-up book of the experience and her life before make her an overnight celebrity, but now afterwards when she experiences multiple panic attacks a day and seems to have lost herself, the sequel book won’t pour out and her deadline approaches. With some understanding her publicist, Meg Fletcher, brings her to Dare Island for some much needed R&R. The stunning hot police chief may be just what she needs to recharge her batteries as long as she can keep her emotions in check and live in the moment unfortunately her treacherous heart just insists on getting involved.
The plot moves along gently at the same pace as the life on Dare Island which in itself is a character in the story along with all its quirky citizens. The story pursues the character growth of both Jack and Lauren along with their developing romance. They set off sparks with both their engaging dialogue and passion, but it’s also neat to see them tentatively letting go of the past to reach for something else. I was so won over as much as Lauren by Jack adopting the little rescue kitten and caring for it. I was not impressed by his ex making her play just as Jack starts to get past that mess. Jack and Lauren spend a lot of time analyzing each other because he’s a cop and she’s a therapist which was a little amusing, but also an interesting facet to their relationship. It made for some rather mature thinking when things could have really gotten angsty and sloppy.
So, it’s not the most exciting book though there are a few action scenes and even more steamy ones, but it’s still a lovely curl-up and relax feel-good read. I would recommend this one for Contemporary Romance lovers who enjoy a slower-paced small town romance.
My thanks to Penguin Group for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
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