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review 2016-02-03 10:24
Review: Cold Evidence (Evidence #6) by Rachel Grant
Cold Evidence (Evidence Series Book 6) - Rachel Grant

Action from the “get go”, smart heroine, yummy hero, hot sex scenes, and a killer on the loose. What more could you ask for in the new romantic suspense, Cold Evidence, by Rachel Grant?

Undine Gray is a Nautical archaeologist working for the Underwater Archaeology Branch (UAB) at the Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) in Washington D.C. Her father is the renowned Marine biologist, Stefan Gray. He has his own research institute and Undine grew up there. She was an expert at a very young age on Marine Biology but due to her lifestyle, she was very lonely. That all changed when Luke Sevick arrived. Luke was living his dream being on scholarship at The Institute. Due to some unfortunate miscues, Luke is forced to leave The Institute and Undine behind.

Fast forward 12 years later. Undine is working on a deep dive to investigate a submarine that went missing during the Cuban Missile Crisis. A number of things go wrong and Undine becomes the only survivor or her crew. She has to make an emergency ascent without time to decompress. Luke, former SEAL and now a Marine biologist and assigned to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Commissioned Officer Corps, is in the area and observes the disaster but also sees a diver in trouble. Pulling Undine from the water and staying with her in the hyperbolic chamber, he realizes he still holds a grudge but can’t help the attraction he feels.

That’s a very brief overview of the story with the exception of several attempts to prevent Undine diving on the wreck of the USS Wrasse.  
What I liked: Cold Evidence is the 6th book in Ms Grant’s Evidence series. I love romantic suspense especially when it’s done correctly. Well, correctly would be based on the reader’s expectations and when it comes to romantic suspense, I have high expectations.

I have a pretty standard routine. I usually am in bed by 10:30 at the latest but two nights in a row I stayed up reading Cold Evidence. I couldn’t find a good spot to stop. The action does not end until the very last page. Then there’s the attraction and angst between Undine and Luke. Not only the attraction but the tension in the exchanges between them. That’s another good point, the conversations between Undine and Luke are extremely well written. The by play, while full of tension and innuendos, flows easily and in some cases had me chuckling at the quick repartee between them.

And the sex…..yeah, hot. Let me just say, Undine and Luke appreciate each other’s attributes and while not wanting to get emotionally involved, aren’t afraid to indulge themselves in their desires.

I also enjoyed catching up with the previous heroines in the Evidence series. Each female lead is connected in some way to the core group. The heroines are smart, snarky in some cases, funny, and very confident in themselves.

The suspense in Cold Evidence is what kept me up at night. Ms Grant is not afraid to give answers early in the book but from that point on, you can’t figure out where the mystery and suspense is going. Believe me, while I did figure out the most obvious clues, she kept surprising me with each little reveal. There are very few authors who can fool me completely but Ms Grant is one of them. And that’s why I keep waiting for each release to gobble it up.

What I didn’t like: It might be my age or it just could be the demand by other readers today, but I do enjoy my romantic suspense with a bit less sex. Yes, I said that. I thrive on the suspense and tension part more than the sex scenes but that is just my preference.

For full disclosure….I was recently picked to be on Ms Grant’s early review team. I was provided an eARC to read and review with an honest opinion, which I just gave you. I wouldn’t have volunteered for the team if I didn’t enjoy her books and in addition, have no problem voicing my likes and dislikes.

One last thing about Ms Grant’s writing. Her research shows through each book like a beacon. I’ve learned more about archeology and marine archeology than I could say. While the basis for Cold Evidence is fiction, you can see the time spent in research to make the book as factual as possible in all other aspects.

(As usual, while Cold Evidence could be read as a standalone, why not start at the beginning with Concrete Evidence?)

Highly Recommend!!!!!

Source: www.justtalkingbooks.com/blog/early-review-cold-evidence-evidence-6-by-rachel-grant-releases-222016
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review 2015-05-27 12:39
Release Day Review: Covert Evidence (Evidence #5) by Rachel Grant
Covert Evidence (Evidence Series Book 5) - Rachel Grant

I'm now to the point if I see a book with Ms Grant's named attached, I will buy it. I just bought a novella called Midnight Sun and I respect her writing so much that I bought a series she rated very highly on Goodreads!!

What I liked: Ms Grant doesn't take a chapter or two to get you hooked. In Covert Evidence, the action starts right away and it does not let up. I don't start reading a Rachel Grant book too late at night or I wouldn't sleep.

When reading a romantic suspense novel, I expect conflict, tension, attraction, miscues between the main couple and a bit of mystery to go along with the suspense. Covert Evidence includes all those attributes and more. More, you say, how can there be more? The writing is tight and clean; and you don't get distracted by plot holes or editing mistakes. 

The other thing you can tell by her writing is she has done her homework. By no means do I know a lot about archaeology but if something catches my attention in a novel, I might get on the internet to learn more. Several times I've checked different areas of archaeology mentioned in The Evidence Series on-line and the info there just added a bit to what Ms Grant was already writing about in her book. I also love the settings for her books as I love history. She includes a bit of history with the setting so as a reader, I feel involved and can picture what she's talking about.

Okay, about Covert Evidence....the main characters, Cressida Porter and Ian Boyd make a great pairing. Ian is a CIA case officer trying to follow a courier to the head of a dangerous group in the Middle East. Unknown to Cressida, she has been duped into becoming the courier. When I say duped, I don't intend to insinuate she's not smart. The opposite is more the case. But she does have some issues and Ian plays on those to get what he wants. And there's the tension, conflict and attraction all working together.

Another aspect I like about this series is I can never count on figuring out the twists the author includes. I think I have it but I only get a few pieces and not the whole story until the very end!

What I didn't like: I found Cressida to be a bit more needy than the previous heroines in the earlier books. Actually that made Covert Evidence seem more real as each heroine isn't a cardboard cut out but a character in there own right. So basically, there's nothing to not like.

I highly recommend Covert Evidence to all romantic suspense fans but start at the beginning of the series with Concrete Evidence.

Source: www.justtalkingbooks.com/blog/release-day-review-covert-evidence-evidence-5-by-rachel-grant
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review 2015-04-09 00:00
Power Play: Awakening
Power Play: Awakening - Rachel Haimowitz,Cat Grant This book was better than the first one in the series, at least for me.
But still a lot of things didn't sit quite right we me.

I realize that Jonathin is not just a Dominant. He is a sadist. Which takes the topic of pain further than what I am used to reading. That I can accept. But I truly hated how Brandon really was afraid of him. Really afraid!:

"I've every confidence you can do me proud tonight.
However...if you embarrass me in front of our guests, I will make you sorry. Clear?"
Raw fear flashed in Brandon's eyes. "Yes, Jonathan. Perfectly."

Raw fear has no business in any kind of relationship as far as I am concerned. D/s is about giving and taking on both sides, but real fear completely tips the balance of things. I hated that.

Towards the end something happened that really upset Brandon. Now, their arrangement had an expiration date. And the shit that went down had the power to potentially ruin Brandon's future career. It went way beyond their temporary contract. Brandon had every right to get upset and show his anger. He reacted like anyone might in that situation, yet it earned him one of the hardest punishments yet. That felt so wrong to me.

On a positive note, this book also had one of the most powerful scenes I have ever read;
Comfortable to read? - Not exactly.
Accurate/Realistic? - I have no idea not being in the lifestyle myself.
But definitely strong. The way it was described from Brandon's POV, his struggle with the pain, how he fought to use the pleasure to beat the pain, the was he was strong enough to ask Jonathan for help to get through the toughest part. Amazing scene that just left me drained.

All in all a mixed bag, unfortunately the things that made me uncomfortable outweighed the good parts.
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review 2015-04-08 17:19
Review: Incriminating Evidence (Evidence #4) by Rachel Grant
Incriminating Evidence (Evidence Series Book 4) - Rachel Grant

Right behind Linda Howard, Rachel Grant is becoming my go to author for Romantic Suspense!!

What I liked: The action begins with the very first page. The synopsis gives a good idea about the storyline but it can't describe the tension between Isabel and Alec. Not only sexual tension but they dance around each other so much, you can also feel the distrust. I appreciated the way Ms Grant portrayed Isabel and Alec. She acknowledges the attraction but these two are far from ready to abandon their preconceived thoughts about the other. Right when you think they are on the same page, something happens to push them apart.....tension!

There are several mysteries surrounding not only the death of Isabel's brother but the abduction of Alex. No one knows who to trust which made for excellent reading. The storyline is well developed and believable especially with all the technology available today. The setting in Alaska was also something I enjoyed. I do wish there had been more time spent on the area and it's full time inhabitants but that's a minor want for me.

The secondary characters, who are all under suspicion of being "the bad guy", were pretty well developed and utilized to further the storyline.  I did figure out one part of the bad guy mystery but still Ms Grant was able to baffle me until the very end. That is key in a suspense book for me and she handled it extremely well with several surprised. 

The whole idea of Raptor kept me intrigued. It is a plausible scenario in today's world and I like how Ms Grant hooked it into a Blackwater type of business. It made me wonder if there really are compounds like Raptor all over the U. S. 

What I didn't like: You can probably tell I enjoyed Incriminating Evidence very much but in most cases of romantic suspense, I usually enjoy less sex and more turmoil. 

Overall, Incriminating Evidence was an entertaining, suspenseful read and I would highly recommend any of Ms Grant's work. It can be read as a stand alone novel but why miss the enjoyment of meeting the characters from previous works.

Highly Recommended!!!!

Source: www.justtalkingbooks.com/blog/review-incriminating-evidence-evidence-4-by-rachel-grant
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review 2015-04-05 00:00
Power Play: Resistance
Power Play: Resistance - Rachel Haimowitz,Cat Grant How the Hell did they do that? They being the authors of this book I have wanted to read for so long.
I just finished it this morning and picked up the sequel right away. Something I did not expect until the very end of this one. And I still don't understand how they made me suddenly want to read more. To suddenly like not only Bran but even Jonathan.

Because the road leading up to this point was no picnic. And I mean serious warning here - this was not pretty! I was so enraged my Kindle nearly took a dive out the window.

I love BDSM-themed books. But I need it to be 100% consensual. This book was just one huge grey area.
Jonathan did things to Bran that almost made me sick. Bran was a beginner with zero knowledge of the lifestyle. At the time they negotiated the contract, Bran had no chance of even imagining the things that may be done to him. And Jonathin did not really bother a whole lot with the talking.
The blurb is sugarcoating this talking about Bran's urges, his desire to submit. If that desire really is there, it is invisible to the reader. All we see is someone who has received an offer he cannot refuse but who does not really understand what he is signing up for.

So, to make it short. Bran did not behave as Jonathan expected and Jonathan ended up beating the crap out of him and torturing him. To the point that Bran was literally shaking with fear whenever Jonathan came near him. He used a fucking taser for God's sake. That is a real weapon. It can kill people!

So why a grey area? Because as nasty as this abuse was - and I have no other word for it - Bran had a safeword and was free to walk out anytime.
He stayed for the money, sure, but mostly out of pride and to prove to himself he is not the weak loser his father used to call him.
So I guess it was consensual to a point.
But still so very far from the beautiful D/s connections I love to read about.

To get back to my initial statement - I still don't know what the authors did to fix this mess for me in final part of the book. But I will read the sequel right away and I am looking forward to it.

Much to my own surprise....

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