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Release Date: May 29, 2012
Buying Links: Amazon The Book Depository
Book Blurb (from press release):
Prepare for heart-racing suspense in LOVE IS MURDER, edited by New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown, this original collection features 30 of the hottest bestselling authors and new voices writing nerve-racking romantic suspense today.
Bodyguards, vigilantes, stalkers, serial killers, women (and men!) in jeopardy, cops, thieves, P.I.s, killers—these all-new stories will keep you thrilled and chilled late into the night.
Go on vacation with Allison Brennan’s Lucy Kincaid, where she saves a man from drowning, only to discover he is in far greater danger on land. Meet Roxanne St. Claire’s “bullet catcher”—bodyguard Donovan Rush—who may have met his match in the sexually charged “Diamond Drop.” Debut author William Simon shows us what happens when the granddaughter of the president of the United States is kidnapped. And Lee Child’s pitch-perfect “I Heard a Romantic Story” puts a whole new spin on LOVE IS MURDER.
Love Is Murder is the third Thriller anthology written exclusively by members of International Thriller Writers, Inc. Barely seven years old, ITW has a roster that reads like a who’s who of thriller writing, with 1635 members representing 28 countries worldwide and over three billion books in print. Headed by current co-presidents Douglas Preston and Kathleen Antrim, its board of directors has included such notables as Lee Child, Tess Gerritsen, Steve Berry, James Rollins, M. J. Rose, Carla Neggers, Gayle Lynds, David Morrell and David Hewson. More information is available on the ITW website, www.thrillerwriters.org.
Reviewed By: Bea
Ok, first of all, this book is 600+ pages long, and 570 of them are the stories. That is a BIG book, and I haven't finished all of the stories; I have been jumping around, picking which ones I want to read. For my review, I picked four stories; two of them are by authors I've read before and two of the authors are new to me. I initially received a digital galley of the book and the formatting was so bad, and confusing, that I gave up reading it. Happily, I also received a print galley and that was much better. So, this review is based on the print galley that I received.
LOCKDOWN by Andrea Kane
In this story, Kane mixes characters from her FBI series and her Forensic Instincts series; the story is easily readable as a separate entity. The characters mix well together, being from series with similar worlds, and the world building is simple yet clear, which is one of Kane's strengths. This story has adventure and two, well actually, three, romances: Sloan and Derek, Kim and James, and the failed romance of Kim and her ex, Ted. Ted wants his ex-wife and their son back and he's willing to go to any extreme. FBI Agents Sloan and Derek Parker work with the local police to thwart him; I enjoyed seeing them in action. We don't really get to see much of James and I would have liked to seen Claire's psychic gifts better explained for people who haven't read the first Forensic Instincts book, but overall, it was a fast-paced, nicely detailed story that didn't feel short. It works all by itself and while I was left wanting more, I wasn't frustrated; just pleasantly hungry for more. :D
I've read Kane before.
COLD MOONLIGHT by Carla Neggers
There was a time when I read everything that she wrote and enjoyed them very much. Then they started feeling formulaic and I began finding other authors and it's been a while now since I've read a book by her. With this story, I felt like I'd never left. That was both good and bad: it was familiar, which can be comforting, but it wasn't anything that she hasn't done before. The romance didn't feel real or believable to me. Part of that may have been because I felt as if I was dropped in the middle of an ongoing story. Since I'm behind on her books, I can't be sure, but the story and characters felt like they were part of a larger, ongoing story and this was just an excerpt. The overall writing is decent but the story is confusing and I didn't believe in the romance.
I've read Neggers before.
DYING TO SCORE by Cindy Gerard
I've been hearing a lot of good buzz about Gerard and have been wanting to try her. I didn't love this story but I did enjoy it and I'll be trying out her full length books. The story has characters from her Black Ops series but only once or twice did I feel like I was missing something. Crystal "Tinkerbelle" Reed and her husband Johnny are on a mission with fellow operatives Doc and Archangel to gather intel on a paramilitary training compound when things go very wrong. Tink, as Crystal is called, holds her own and is not just a token female on the team. She rescues Johnny and their interaction at the end of the story is sweet, funny, and very real. The military op mainly serves as the story device for Johnny to get hurt and Tink to rescue him but it is a short story, it's hard to do it all. I enjoyed all of the characters and the story; it also served as a good introduction to Gerard's Black Ops series.
Gerard was a new author for me.
I HEARD A ROMANTIC STORY by Lee Child
One of my brothers-in-law, not the one who just died, but the other one, who's still alive, is a big fan of Child's. He's received several Child books from me for Christmas and birthdays over the years, but I've never stopped and read any of Child's books. That will be changing. This story, which is very short at only seven pages, had me laughing just about non-stop. We never meet the lovers in this story, we hear about them from the narrator. All of the characters are nameless. The narrator is very stream of conscious, which I wouldn't enjoy in a full-length book but it works wonderfully for this story. It's a bittersweet love story, told with ironic, dry humor by the narrator and it most definitely does not have a happy ending. Child packs a lot of detail, humor, pathos, and emotion into this story. I haven't finished the anthology but I feel confident in saying that this short story is the highlight of the book.
Child was a new author for me.
List of contributing authors, in order of appearance:
Sandra Brown, editor, no story
Roxanne St. Claire
Jon Land & Jeff Ayers
Toni McGee Causey
I received an print galley and a digital galley for review.