by Cari Hunter
Date: April 15 2013
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Series: Pascal & Kent (1st in series)
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.0
Read: February 11 2016
My second book that I’ve read by this author.
Even though the first book that I read by this author was a solid 5 star affair, in my mind, I’ve still been slow to read another book by the author. Mostly because I’m not really much of a chills and thrills, damsels in distress type of reader. So, I kind of have to pace myself. Very slowly.
Two main characters, two . . . no, three, I think three points of view. Two being from the point of view of the ‘damsels in distress’ and one from the villain of the piece.
Alex Pascal opens the book as a police officer in Los Angeles. Very quickly, though, she finds herself injured and in the hospital. Recovery takes a while, and once it’s over, Pascal is back out on the streets. And almost immediately back off. She just can’t do it any longer. So, she packs up and moves to a cabin in the woods. And works there for an old man named Walt. These woods happen to be in the mountains of the North Cascades.
At one point Alex gets her hair cut shortish, before moving from the police to the mountains. I mention because that’s really the most that I came away with in regards to her physical features. Well, that and the scarring. That might be my own fault, not sure, or the author left things open. Heck, I might look back at the book and find a riveting deeply informative description that I somehow just overlooked. Regardless, I do not particularly mind that I’m clueless about what she looks like, or for the fact that I lack knowledge of her age. I think I lack that knowledge. Vague recollection that she’s been on the police force 5 years. Everything being equal that may or may not put her somewhere nearish 27 years of age?
Sarah Kent’s story opens with her in the hospital. A drunk driver rammed and flipped the car she was in. She was in the backseat. Her little sister and mother didn’t make it. Her step-father wasn’t around so he’s alive. He, though, wants nothing to do with the step-daughter who lived in place of his own flesh and blood (not specifically stated, but maybe also in place of his wife).
Once she’s back on her feet, at least physically, and with a certain amount of money in her pocket, Sarah figures that this is the perfect opportunity to quit her job and do a bit of traveling. Eventually she ends up hiking in the North Cascades mountains.
Again, I probably overlooked something, but other than physical injuries, I don’t recall what Sarah looks like. And I don’t have a handy ‘five years in the police’ to guess-estimate an age. There may or may not have been some remark about her being 20 years older than her step-sister. And the step-sister was around 7, so, 27.
The Villain is a man who was in prison but was sprung from it because he had a job/contract uncompleted. And the White Supremacists who he was working for wants him to finish his job. So they sprung him. He’s wandering the mountains with a young woman who he has no feelings for, but claims to be his girlfriend. Bethany being her name. She’s the niece of the leader of the White Supremacist group Nate is working for. Nate’s a cold icy man, with no remorse in killing.
Thrills and Chills
While hiking one day, Alex spots a truck hidden in some underbrush. There’s a fake tag on it. The suspicious circumstance gets her to call it in. Eventually she learns that there was a prison break and that the people involved may or may not be on the mountain. This is the first instance when Alex learned that her hike might involve more than she expected
While continuing her tour of the world, or whatever it was Sarah was doing, she ended up hiking around the North Cascades. Somewhat randomly, she decides to head to Desolation Point. While camping one night, she is startled to find that there’s another tent nearby. Greetings are exchanged. Along with food and conversation. Their part of the story, the two men in the other tent, is mostly there so that they can tell Alex, once she runs into them, that there’s another woman on the mountain. A mountain that suddenly has a very nasty storm striking it.
And so, everyone but Alex, Sarah, and the evil people flee the mountain – fleeing a storm. The storm strikes fast. Not unexpectedly, everyone involved knew it was coming. Just maybe not so fast. Fast enough to catch Sarah up on the summit, on Desolation Point. Rain pounded her. Wind tried to blow her off the mountain. She’s sitting next to shelter but there’s no way in. Visibility is down to about half a foot. This isn’t good when a wrong step could send you hurtling far to your death.
Eventually the weather clears enough to be a really annoying rain, and stiff winds. Fearing staying on the top of the mountain, Sarah begins trying to flee back down. Stumbles around. Hears voices, heads toward said voices. Stares at the people she finds in a clearing. Whimpers when a gunshot goes off. And so Sarah learns that ‘terrible danger’ is on the mountain.
And so – the story continues with Sarah fleeing the bad guys (Nate and Bethany), with Alex wandering around the mountain looking for Sarah.
Also it’s quite chilly.
Truth be told, I wasn’t really into the romance. It occurred. Life moved on.
I was rather into the story until about 59 or 69 percent into the book. And then something happened. No, not in the book, this isn’t a plot twist situation. No, something happened in me. I lost the ability to care about the people in the story. I just kind of numbly watched people stumble around, fearing death, crying, whimpering, drowning, whimpering and . . . felt nothing. It’s my own fault. I should have stopped myself instead of pushed myself to the conclusion. Pushed the book away for another day.
So, overall, the book was mostly interesting. I didn’t particularly care one way or another about the romance. And I kind of got numbed at some point, so take all that in advisement when considering how to ‘take’ me rating this specific book 3.5 stars.
There’s a high likelihood I’ll read another book by this author, but it’ll probably be an even longer break between this book and my next book by the author. Than it was between Snowbound and this book (which, I now see, I read almost exactly 2 years ago – Feb 2 to 3 2014).
By the way, I recall now why I became numbed. I had stupidly allowed myself to glance over some other books by this author. Don’t do what I did. You’ll learn something that you don’t want to learn. like, say, the description for the next book involving these two characters. Not sure why, but seeing that this is the first book in an unnamed series kind of drained the thrill/danger/chill from the story. To the point I was just watching people stumble around a mountain. It’s easier, I’ve found, to read a book like this if I don’t in fact already know that the characters will return. Also, it deeply depressed me to realize that their lives were crap before they meet each other (the tragic events that landed both, separately, in the hospital), were crap while they were together (the danger on the mountain), and was/will be crap after that (since the sequel is yet another danger-thrill book).
February 12 2016