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Sting. What can I say, Sandra Brown is the queen of romantic suspense novels and her latest book just proves it once again. The Sandra Brown books in order can be savored in any order you choose because they are all standalone works of fiction.
Two guys walk into a bar and see a girl entering the room soon after. And so the story starts. Shaw Kinnard is a ruthless assassin who teams up with another lowlife for a kill contract. The target is the sister of someone who, let’s just say, pissed off the wrong people, and he is to be punished by seeing his sibling dead.
But when Shaw makes eye contact with the target – yes you figured it out by now, she is the woman walking into the bar – Jordie Bennet, there is a spark between them and his resolution to kill her falters….just a bit.
Knowing that his teammate will double-cross him as per his usual MO, he proactively kills the guy and kidnaps Jordie before she could enter her car. Afterall why not get all the money promised for the kill for himself rather than splitting it in half with the other guy anyway?
While he knows that he will have to kill Jordie eventually. Shaw keeps putting it off with all sorts of excuses, including having to contact the job contractor, having to find her brother, having to do this or that…so Jordie finds herself still alive, and with this, a newfound hope blooms quietly in her chest…
I was really looking forward to reading yet another book by Sandra Brown, as she is literally my first romantic suspense author that I came into contact with through her books some three decades earlier. I do have to thank her for instilling in me the love of this spark-laden genre. While I do love many other romantic suspense authors, Sandra Brown will always be ‘my first’ and I will always read her books as soon as they are published (or even earlier, when I’m lucky to get galley copies).
Sting has definitely a sting to it, you feel it to the core of your gut. The chemistry between Jordie and Shaw is real and I bet many women wish their relationships were so full of sparks as there is between Jordie and Shaw. While the actual sex scenes come pretty much late in the book, everything builds up to those very moments, the tension and suspense, along with that sensual anticipation that we all crave.
The writing is top notch and I liked both main characters, but I also enjoyed the banter between two secondary characters, Joe and his wife Martha. That’s a healthy relationship if I’ve ever seen one.
About the story, well let’s just say I never saw the main twist and I was just as shocked as Jordie to learn about it. Mouth open, jaw on the floor and all that… To be honest my mind was racing from the start as to how their relationship will be solved because they were both in an impossible situation, not only from a moral standpoint but also from a legal one. But Sandra Brown knew how to resolve the impasse in a way that left all of us thinking later on – “Why didn’t I see this before? It’s the only logical way indeed.”
Overall I loved, loved, loved Sting and as usual, I’m hungry for more Sandra Brown stories and I’m eagerly looking forward to her next novel.