Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Review: You Can't Hide and Count to Ten by Karen Rose

So more reviews today :D I'm catching up I'm catching up (my reviews over the no. of books I have read). This week is awesome at work as my supervisor is not there :D (makes me very happy indeed) . So today's review are two of Karen Rose's books, You Can't Hide and Count to Ten. I've always enjoyed her books, but when I read You Can't Hide back blurb, it didn't attract me really because I don't like that kind of story. However, I decided to give it a go after reading Lori's reviews of Karen Rose's other books and remind me how much I enjoyed them. So I decided to get You Can't Hide before Count to Ten was released, which I got last Friday and read during the week-end.

You Can't Hide : 2.75/5
published in April 2006 by Warner

All right, basically the story starts with the death of a woman who committed suicide. However, this woman was seeing a psychiatrist, Tess Ciccotelli. The suicide turns out to be a murder (the victim was mentally pushed to commit suicide) and rapidly, Tess' patients and ppl of her entourage are killed. Of course, Tess is at the top of the suspects list. In addition, her relations to the police department are poor because she has previously declared a murderer unfit for trial since he was "insane."

Primary detective on this case is Aidan Reagan. At first, he does not like Tess all that much, but protecting ppl and finding the murderer are his job. Quickly, they find out that Tess is being framed. In addition, Aidan realizes that Tess is not as tough as she projects and develops feelings for her.

Series: It's not really a series, but all of her books are connected as in the characters know each other.
Genre: Contemporary, romantic suspense

Review: As I said earlier, I hesitated a long time before buying this book, because this is not my favorite type of plot - psychiatrist who cannot divulge information because confidentiality and etc. and become target of dislike of cops and afterwards, becomes the victim of a crazy stalker... I have to say, I didn't really enjoy this book and skim a lot of parts.

The Characters - Hmmm, let see. I don't know how to describe Tess, I actually don't know if I know her. I mean, she's estranged with her family because of a misunderstanding that is resolved later on, she pretty much lives for her job and she has emotions and is not as cold as others would believe. If I found that Tess was difficult to describe, then Aidan lacked even more depth ^^; His a cop from a family of cop and you know, the righteous kind of person. He had a very serious relationship in the past, but it ended when the woman complained he wasn't making enough money, basically she snobbed him. That's about it ^^; So no, not the best and most entertaining characters. In this case, it's the story that made the book.

Story & Writing - Karen Rose has a very strong voice which makes her able to carry a story, even if the characters are only so-so. I like her writing style very much... very intense and well-written. Unfortunately, this one was far from being her best in my opinion.

The Cover - It was okay. Nothing spectacular, but at least fitting for a romantic suspense.

Am I keeping this book? Yes, since I have all the others.

Count to Ten : 4.25/5
published in February 2006 by Warner

***EDIT on April 1, 2012: After re-reading this book a couple of time, I still love it to pieces! It's great and I think it deserves A+ :)

A fire completely ravaged a house and the firefighters find a complety charred body of a young woman. Lieutnant Reed Solliday investigates the fire, but has to bring in homicide when a bullet is found in the skull of the victim. Mia has just come back from disability after having been shot and is partnered temporarily with Reed to solve this crime. Very fast, Mia and Reed are attracted to each other and embarked in an affair with no strings. However, fire happens after fire, bodies and victims keep turning up, add in two insufferable reporters and the shooter who injured Mia and her partner and Mia's discovery of siblings she never knew of and it's almost too much for them to deal.

Series: As I said, no series although the books are connected it.
Genre: Contemporary, romantic suspense

Review: All right, I was going to wait a little bit before buying this book since You Can't Hide was kind of disappointing... Also, Dear Author's review ,although not bad, did not give me the urge to run and go buy the book. Although, this is what happened :P I bought it at the same time as the Dream-Hunter and read it immediately after and it was worth it :) I really liked this book and think this is one of the best so far :)

The Characters - Wow, this time, Ms Rose really did nail the characters :) Mia Mitchell is a cop, the good kind. She's tough and complex, the kind of person you'd like to have to watch your back. She's also had a difficult past, but she overcame it. Lots of ppl have complained about tough heroine being bitchy or annoying, but Mia isn't one of those. She's not indestructible and she finds out first hand. As for Reed, he was an interesting character :) I liked how Mia first thought he looked like Satan! However, he's not evil at all. He's a widower with a 14 y.o. daughter and is a bit the typical guy wanting no-string sex, but ends up caring too much. Which was quite predictable given that Reed is a very caring person. I also like his curiosity which makes him eaves-dropping a couple of time. All in all, both characters are very humane, but at the same time, not too stereotyped either.

Story & Writing - Well I won't comment on the writing, since I kind of alluded to it up there. I really enjoyed the story, I thought it was suspensful and intense, with a right balance of action and romance. I also like the realism of it, it's the kind of story I could see happening in real life as well. Jane at Dear Author has mentioned that there were many moral issues discussed in this book (eg: nature vs. nurture theory), but she found that it was given only superficial consideration and that the author already her opinion on the subject... I didn't think so, but perhaps it's because I share the same opinion as the author. Anyway, this book definitively deserves a thumb up and I'm happy to have read this book.

The Cover - Well, I think it's a bit plain, but again, suit the romantic suspense style of the book.

Am I keeping this book? Oh yeah!

Anything else? As I said, all of Ms Rose are connected because the characters know each other; however, they do stand alone very nicely. I actually think that Ms Rose was quite bright not to introduce all of her characters all at once in the first book. Instead, she creates circles of ppl and rotates among them. So you don't get an overdose :)

Anyway, here is Ms Rose's website and the next novel's main character is Vito Ciccotelli.