Thanks to the Corvisiero Literary Agency for the opportunity to participate in this review tour. Today I have a romantic suspense title: Damned If You Don’t by Linda J. Parisi. Please be sure to stop by the other stops on the tour, and you can enter to win a $75 gift card from Amazon by following This Link
I’m a huge fan of stories that feel new and fresh, with suspense elements that feel possible: you can see the premise for the suspense actually happening. In Damned If You Don’t, Parisi manages to mix corporate bottom line with developer’s conscience and come up with a winner.
Morgan is a scientist who is on the bubble of a giant breakthrough: she has developed a formula that will, in pill form, help people to lose weight. Her bosses at BioClin want an immediate release, but Morgan is not convinced that the product is all it can be, and wants time to sort out the issues. Big Pharma is the 600 pound gorilla in the room: Morgan doesn’t stand a chance. And when the formula is stolen and used on an actual human who doesn’t survive, Morgan sees no alternative: she steals the formula and documentation from her lab and runs.
Jack has been hired by BioClin to recover the formula and bring Morgan to the police. An Alpha with a past and some serious issues of his own, Jack is quite interesting and intriguing: but his interplay with Morgan is not all that it seems. And it’s difficult for Morgan to not find him attractive, even as she is more than capable of reading him the riot act.
Morgan is clever: decidedly so, and comfortable with her brains, even as she is a bit over the top about the formula with her own guilt. Her interactions and reactions to Jack are normal and open, even as she is a bit confused about why he is helping her, and the truth of his involvement is yet to be discovered.
I would have liked to have some ‘lead in’ to the action: this story starts at a full out run and really doesn’t slow down, so the characters are a bit slow to be understood. The third person narration also adds to that sense of remove, even though it is crisp and clear, I would have liked some inclusion of character point of view to give a better sense of their own voices, concerns and thoughts. The characters, despite those little niggles for me are solid and strong with believable connections and concerns, and their relationship is developing in balance, not overwhelming the suspense elements, nor being pushed to the background as filler. A delicate balance that is so often missed in romantic suspense, Parisi manages to keep both elements in the reader’s mind, and twist elements together to craft a story that works on both levels.
Title: Damned If You Don't
Author: Linda J. Parisi
Published by: Loose ID LLC
Source: Corvisiero Literary Agency
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ iTunes ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Book Depository
Andrew Jackson “Jack” Kent’s on the hunt for white collar criminals, and as a private investigator he always gets his man. Except in this case it’s a woman, the brilliant cellular kineticist Dr. Morgan Mackenzie, whose next thrilling discovery is—him.
On the run from her employers with the formula for a priceless but deadly diet drug, Morgan agrees to a night of pleasure with the outrageously sexy stranger. But when she leaves the next morning, Jack won’t let her get far, and that’s when she realizes horrible truth. Her cowboy on a white horse isn't a hero after all. He’s part of the posse.
Yet when Jack goes to turn Morgan in, he learns who the real criminals are, and suddenly, it’s a race against time to find a murderer before they’re killed themselves. To do that Jack needs to convince Morgan he’s on her side. Even though she doesn't trust him, Jack is a drug she can’t resist, leading her to find out that more often than not you're Damned If You Don't fall in love
A copy of this title was provided via Corvisiero Literary Agency for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.