Cooper Sullivan and Lil Chance were unlikely childhood friends – thrown together each summer when Coop visited his grandparents’ South Dakota ranch. But with every year, their friendship deepened from innocent games to stolen kisses and the promise of something special…until fate, and a terrible tragedy, pulled them apart.
Twelve years later Coop – now a private investigator in New York – returns to the ranch to care for his grandparents. Though the memory of Coop’s touch still haunts her, Lil has let nothing stop her dream of opening a Wildlife Refuge on her family’s land. But someone else has been keeping a close watch on Lil Chance, and Coop’s return has unleashed more than just old passions.
There’s a hunter lurking out in the Black Hills, and Lil and Coop have been singled out as prey…
This book was next up as part of my World Book Night reading challenge and was my first experience of Nora Roberts.
The book is a thriller/romance novel which is split into 3 parts: Heart, Head and Spirit. Heart introduces us to a young Cooper and Lil during their teen and college years, their ensuing friendship, the discovery and as Lil becomes a target.
In Head, the tension rises with more stalking and death and Coop goes back to his detective roots and learns more about who they’re dealing with. This theme carries on through the Spirit part also. Coop is determined to protect Lil but actually she’s strong and independent and she actually doesn’t really need saving. There’s a bit where he picks her up and carries her off which I thought was a bit cheesey and patronising. However, the events do reach a climatic ending if not a little predictable.
The perpertrator is revealed quite early on which I didn’t really like, I prefer them to be revealed much later in the story – almost at the end. I didn’t think that it really added anything to the tension, anticipation or expectation by knowing early on. In parts, the predator has his own voice as we’re let into his head and his motivation. This I thought was on the weak side, the link between him and Lil and what drives him to do what he does.
I did feel that it got a little repetitive on occasion – Lil’s feelings and her issues with Coop, she kept banging on about them, and I just kept thinking yeah yeah we know, let’s move on now.
The relationship between Tansy and Farley as a secondary romance is really rather sweet if not a little nauseous in places.
Overall, quite a good thriller without being too gruesome which suited me as I don’t like reading books that scare me and or play on my mind. Coop reminded me of Jack Reacher…elements of vigilantism in him!
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