My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Toni Anderson’s Dangerous Waters (Montlake Romance 2012)is from the new genre of romantic thrillers. I should have looked closer when I picked this book out of the ‘thriller’ category and noticed the publisher. Duh. Instead, I spent most of the 350 pages wondering how such intelligent characters could fall prey to teenage emotions so succinctly?
Let me back up. If you can leap over the nonstop romantic innuendos, thoughts, and emotions, this is a wonderful story. Thomas Edgefield and Finn Carver (it took me a while to figure out why the juxtaposition of those two names bothered me. Then I got it: ‘Tom Sawyer’ ‘Huck Finn’)discover a dead body while investigating a shipwreck. When Sergeant Holly Rudd arrives to investigate the murder, life will never be the same for her or Finn. They play off of each other, each hiding secrets as they uncover others, with a few close calls that leave Holly damaged but stronger and Finn (small spoiler) with a bullet wound in his chest.
Throughout what admittedly is a well-told story, the love interest is the driving force of the plot with everything else secondary. That mitigates what could have been a solid thriller. See if you agree: By page 66, Finn shares with the reader his growing lust for a woman he just met, nurtured apparently by nothing but his active imagination. When we pop into Holly’s head, we see the same reaction. I’m sure it’s inspired by body language between them, but wouldn’t at least Rudd be professional enough to dismiss it, especially since she is hiding a recent illicit workplace romance?
Maybe that’s the romance genre. Can anyone enlighten me?
Other than that, the story is fast paced, never slowing down, something always happening. I gave it four stars because I realized that the more I read (aside from the bee-stung lips and the manly muscles) the less I wanted to stop. Overall this is a decent read that the author could have delivered a lot better by maturing the romantic play.
Jacqui Murray is the editor of a K-6 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, creator of two technology training books for middle school and six ebooks on technology in education. She is the author of Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a columnist for Examiner.com, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, Cisco guest blog, Technology in Education featured blogger, IMS tech expert, and a bi-weekly contributor to Write Anything. Currently, she’s editing a thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.