Let Me In by Donna Kauffman was part of a stack of books I won courtesy of SBTB. I can honestly say I haven’t read a Donna Kauffman book before this, but I’m a little sad to say I’m not sure I’ll pick one up again.
Sidebar: my darling Bald One and I are seeing each other three nights a week based on his work schedule. Based on our sleep schedules, we’re seeing each other alive even less. And I’m losing a lot of sleep. So when I decided to read this, it was Sunday, in between naps and laundry. I hit the jump. That’ll be the rule for the lovely T&A reviews. My gals have no plans on reading these, so I know I won’t ruin it for them…but I wouldn’t want to ruin it for you.
I read romance for plot, suspense and well developed characters all laced with titillation and a bit of sex. Most of what I get to read has two of the first three characteristics and often heavy on one of the last two. This book gave me a lot of suspense, two decently developed characters and a lot of longing glances. What I wasn’t looking for but got through the ying-yang? Conversation.
We spent probably the first third to half of the book with two characters. Talking. To themselves. Each other on occasion. Or to themselves in their heads and arguing. It takes that long for the two of them to finally introduce the third character, who I think got a passing mention while they were talking them to themselves. We learn about violence and for some reason the idea of spies being romantic heroes has been set back with this one. Yes, he’s hot – but he spends most of the book nursing his ribs. (Although – mad props for realistic recovery time on injuries.) She’s also the requisite compact, adorable master spy who’s been massively injured and hiding away – so we don’t expect her to be fabulously fit. And in many ways, she’s damaged. But we’re to believe she’s managed to write two romance novels while having limited experience? Oh and she’s able to pull off some mad moves in a pinch. Like helping a man almost twice her weight into a cab top sleeping bed.
Oh yeah, she’s a writer now. A well hidden writer, as she’s in the mountains of nowhere (well, I’ve been there). Unless you read the Amazon synopsis, then you knew this going in. This writing she never actually does while we’re seeing her in this adventure with her ex-boss. Just saying.
So we have a not-writer writing in the woods, a super ex-boss who’s hunch causes him to go out into the wildness to find his favorite spy. There’s injuries, there’s doctoring (sans nookie), there’s the perfectly timed communique. This improbably message puts us on the run to close quarters of a mini-RV causing even closer physical maneuvers, some cross country travel by car and plane to get us improbably on a long winding road to ye olde homestead. By the by, who’s the first person we run into on said homestead? The supposed dead woman? Of course! We solve that crazy consternation (I saw her dead! but who else could call with that code?!?), find out just why everything feels “off” and bring about world peace – all in record time. To make it all wrap up pretty we have a hotel where we have a clandestine meeting and a HEA – with bonus surprise.