by Rachel Brimble
Changing her life...again
After two years in hiding, Angela Taylor knows her independence is worth it. As long as she can escape her past, she has everything under control. Until a flash flood hits the park where she works, and hot Chris Forrester shows up the exact moment she needs a hero.
Chris proves he can save lives-and weaken a girl's knees. But how can she make him understand that she's off-limits, that getting close to her will endanger his life? Her happiness or his safety: it shouldn't even be a choice.
Because when you love someone, you protect them, no matter the cost. At least, that's what Angela keeps telling herself....
Read an excerpt:
Their eyes locked and Chris’ gaze dropped to her mouth. It fell ajar and her tongue poked out to wet her bottom lip. He snatched his gaze back to the sky. They were in the middle of a disaster situation. They were reaching out to each other for support. Nothing more. Nothing less. So why the hell was his heart beating like a damn jackhammer?
He shielded his eyes against the sun and prayed to God she hadn’t seen his need to kiss her. He focused on the helicopters. “Damn it.”
She shifted beside him and he felt her gaze on him once more. “What is it?”
“They’re not going to be any help to the people stranded in the trees.”
“Those vultures aren’t going to do a damn bit of good. Where are the rescue teams?”
“What are you talking about? What vultures?”
“Can’t you see?” He shot his arm toward the sky as frustration hummed along his nerve endings. “They’re TV helicopters. A fat lot of bloody help--”
“TV cameras? Oh, my God.”
Chris turned. Her face grew ashen and she swayed back on her heels, her eyes wide with terror. She gripped his forearm. “Help me. Don’t let them see me. You have to do something.”
“What? What are you talking about?”
“Chris, please. Help me.”
Without thinking, he pulled her into his arms and she buried her face into his chest. He brought one hand to the back of her head, the other to the small of her back and pulled her close. She fit the contours of his body like she was meant to be there.
He held her tight. “What is it? What’s wrong?”
She shook her head against his chest. “It’s over. It’s all over.”
The helicopters circled one more time and then flew away, disappearing over the horizon once more. “They’ve gone. Angela? Look at me. What is it?”
She pulled back and tears slipped over her lower lids and down her cheeks. “I’m dead. He’s coming. He’s coming and this time he’ll kill me.”
He gripped her forearms, adrenaline filling his blood on a protective wave. “Who will? What are you talking about?”
She closed her eyes. “My husband.”
I was excited to have another opportunity to read and review a book by Rachel Brimble. I had my first taste of her earlier this year and had a feeling that I would like this book as much as the other one. I was right.
Before the book even gets started, Rachel tells us that this is more of a personal story for her, as she and her family were among those who were caught in the floods of 2010 and had to be rescused from a rooftop. Others weren't so lucky. I could feel her emotion as she relived that experience by writing a similar disaster in this story. I even had a tear or two in my eyes as I tried to imagine the horror. Luckily, that horrible part doesn't go on forever. The flood is the foundation for the good, the bad, and the ugly that happens in this story, but it isn't the whole story. I do think she could write another book based on her experiences, though.
Anyway, both Chris and Angela are damaged souls. Chris is trying to get over losing his fiancee to another man. Angela has been on the run from an abusive husband. Yes, they are drawn together thanks to a tragedy, but are both also reawakened. The threat of Robert coming after Angela bonds them as Angela is determined to stop living her life in fear and Chris is determined to actually take care of someone about whom he cares deeply. At the same time, they are both quite fearful of giving in to someone again, after having been so hurt in the past. I can't say that I blame them.
A rapidly developing romance based on crisis and fear isn't one that is necessarily going to make it long-term. The two of them have plenty of ups and downs as they try to protect themselves from the psychotic ex-husband who is now threatening all of Rachel's loved ones. They have a long road ahead of them, should they decide to maintain this relationship. There are a lot of pros and cons, but you find yourself rooting for them to make it and hope they can find the same faith in love that you have as the reader.
There is plenty of action and suspense as they are forced to take matters into their own hands when it comes to apprehending Robert. It's not an FBI thriller, but will still keep you glued to the Kindle screen. Yes, it is somewhat predictable and formulaic, but the storytelling makes it worth it. Rachel has successfully added unique story ideas to a familiar plot, to make it her own. I found this to be a great escape and yet again look forward to reading another one of her books.
Also available from Harlequin
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Rachel lives with her husband and two young daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK. After having several novels published by small US presses, she secured agent representation in 2011. In 2012, she sold two books to Harlequin Superromance. She also writes Victorian romance for Kensington--her debut was released in April 2013.
16 Marsden Place with Omnific Publishing is her first romantic comedy since 2010.
She has just signed a further three-book contract with Harlequin Superromance.
Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family and beloved black Lab, Max. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England…although she hopes a dream visit to Canada might just change her mind!
She likes nothing more than connecting and chatting with her readers and fellow romance writers. Rachel would love to hear from you!
Rachel will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Follow the tour for more chances to win!