Danger...more of a suspence than a romance

Tuesday, April 21

Danger in a Red Dress by Christina Dodd (Fortune Hunters #4)
Romantic Suspence
February 2009
Signet Publishing
ISBN-13: 9780451226266

Buy the book:

From the publisher:
A riveting family drama unfolds as New York Times bestselling author Christina Dodd completes the Fortune Hunter series with a novel that delivers secrets, lies, and passion

Down on her luck and desperate for work, beautiful Hannah Grey finds herself in a mansion on the wild Maine coast, caring for a lonely elderly woman. On her deathbed, she entrusts Hannah with a dangerous secret. Now Hannah's on the run, pursued by killers, and desperately needs the one man who can keep her alive.

Gabriel Prescott has hunted for a home his entire life. Now he's on the verge of finding his long-lost family. Only one person dares to stand in his way -- Hannah Grey. Yet the delicate, determined woman who threatens his search for truth may be the only woman who can save him.

Hannah Grey, an in home care nurse on admistrative leave due to a pending investigation, is hired and coerced by Carrick Manly to take care, and spy on, his invalid mother. A mother who is hiding a secret about a stolen fortune worth millions. Hannah befriends the surly Mrs. Manly, but Carrick believes she has ingratiated herself with his mother to steal her fortune too. Carrick hires a security firm owned by Gabriel Prescott, who unbeknowst to him is his half brother.

Gabriel is hired to observe Hannah, but takes the case to learn more about his secret brother. He quickly becomes enamored and obsessed with the seemingly moral and altruistic Hannah, but questions his instincts and her innocence due to his jaded perception.

I have been eagarly anticipating this book for a while, as it concludes both the Fortune Hunters series and the Lost Texas Hearts series. Gabriel Prescott has been a mysterious character in many of these previous stories, and thought that Danger in a Red Dress would be his story. However, the story focuses more on Hannah than on Gabriel. I was somewhat disappointed in this choice. That being said, the reader is instantly intrigued with Hannah and her story.

This was a fast paced story, that was more of a suspence, than it was a romance, which is what my only criticism for this book would be. I think a reader has certain expectations when reading a book in series like this one. You expect that the new book will follow a similar formula as the previous ones, that makes it cohesive, and builds on what has been previously established. I didn't feel that that happened with this story. Much the same way I felt after reading Lori Foster's My Man Michael, part of the SBC fighters (was a time travel which was completely unlike the previous books in the series), which I think is the main reason many people gave the book bad reviews. Not necessarily because it was a bad book, just that it was very different than what was expected for the series.

As a romantic suspence it is disappointing, but as a suspence novel it was an enjoyable read. If you decide to read this book, don't expect a romance. However, if you want a suspence novel, with intriguing and conflicted characters, a mystery surrounding a lost fortune, malicious and deadly relatives, then I think you will find Danger in a Red Dress an enjoyable read.

Romance: 2.0
Passion: 1.0
Kleenex: 1.0
Overall: 3.0

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