Sexy, gifted, and loyal, PI Jacob Decker is a tall, cool drink of perfection who had Emmanuelle Holmes at "hello." His relationship with Emme's best friend kept them apart for years, but things have changed. Now that a case has brought him to Gnaw Bone, Colorado, the road is wide open for Emme and Deck to explore something hotter and deeper than Emme dreamed possible. So why is she sabotaging the best thing that's ever happened to her?
It isn't easy to catch Deck off guard, but Emme does just that when she walks back into his life after nine long years. The curvy brunette had her charms back in the day, but now she's a bona fide knockout . . . and she wants to rekindle their friendship. Deck, however, wants more. Emme's always been the one; she excites Deck's body and mind like no other woman can. But a dark chapter from Emme's past overshadows their future together. Now only Deck can help her turn the page-if she'll let him . . .
I’ve had Kaleidoscope on my shelf for some time. It was given to me and it also happens to be the sixth book in the Colorado Mountain series. I thought to save it and read the rest of the series first. So there it sat and I didn’t manage the other books yet. I discovered that I could get away with reading it out of order from other readers so this prompted me to try it again. I’ve loved many of the books I’ve read by this author so I was eager going in.
The story opens with private investigator, Jacob ‘Deck’ Decker arriving in town to meet with a joint law enforcement task force that has come together over a string of robberies in the area that is stumping them. Deck gets it done and he doesn’t come cheaply these days, but he’s willing to help the force since his best friend is part of it.
Just before he gets to his meeting, Deck encounters a woman he hasn’t seen in nine years who was a bright spot in his life, but he had to give her up as a friend when her best friend broke it off with him. He barely recognizes this new bold sexy looking woman that is Emme Holmes. Emme is happy to see him and he feels the sparks between them that hint at more than the old friendship. Unfortunately, she’s with another guy.
But Deck doesn’t see that as an obstacle since he soon discovers that Emme’s man is a suspect in his new case and he’ll be helping her work out that her guy needs to be an ex and soon.
Emme never forgot Jacob and was more than sad when he stepped back from their friendship, though it was understandable considering it was her best friend that dumped him. Now, he’s living nearby and something good could happen between them since she’s shut of her bad decision and Jacob’s free. Only, with Jacob in her life now, something odd is happening and they may not get a shot at something together after all.
Kaleidoscope, no surprise, has an alpha male for a hero who’s solid and got his business together, a woman with some fire and drama, a girl posse and a guy group, a bit of a mystery and some healing going on. It’s also, no surprise, a bulky thing with extra mental monologues for the heroine who comes across as ditzy a lot of the time as a result along with some erratic behavior that makes sense later in the story, and a whole lot of wordiness though for the love of Dove Dark Chocolate I really needed a genius like Deck to speak in full sentences now and then. But I guess it balances out with her monologuing.
Deck had my full respect the way he stuck with Emme through each of her episodes of trying to storm off without all the facts, push him away, deny the truth he was telling her, and even attempt to break things off when they got real. She had a sweet side and a giving nature that was combined with this ‘I am an island’ vibe that didn’t ring true though it makes sense when the truth starts coming out. As a result of all these things, I didn’t connect as well as I could with their romance compared to others by the author.
Now, I might not have read more than one other of this particular series, but I’ve read several of the author’s other books. In comparison, this one got off to a good start, but then lagged in the middle for me. The ending was somewhat anti-climactic for me, too. Lots of the excitement happened off- scene. It wasn’t a bad story and was actually quite the spicy thing. I liked the characters and the plot, but my mind drifted a few times and it was easy to put it down.
Side note- a beautiful kaleidoscope is the gift Emme gives Deck when they parted as friends nine years earlier and stays a symbol between them all the way through this book. Lovely imagery by the author.
So I liked it, but didn’t love it. I definitely want to go back and get the earlier stories and continue reading more by the author. This one is for those who enjoy the alpha heroes, camaraderie in a larger cast of characters, spicy romance and a dash of mystery in their contemporary romance.
My thanks to Forever for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #73 CR
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