by Jewel Stone

April 2003
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Take a bunch of single folks and stick them on a mountain in Montana, far from their everyday lives. Sounds like a successful formula for a dating service, doesn’t it? Well, it is, and that’s pretty much what A.J. does as owner of “Escapade for One”, a singles tour company. Until the one fateful trip when she meets Rhett Porter.

Take a cold blooded killer and a man bent on revenge and have him track this killer to a mountain cabin where there are a whole lot of city slickers trying to find the right mate. Yes, it’s easy to see that A.J. is on a collision course with one justice-minded Rhett Porter, and to add to the suspense, the killer is stalking them all.

This is a well thought out story, with a very strong Alpha hero. And Rhett certainly fits the bill as “hero”. He’s strong, clever, silent most of the time, and seems to be able to survive very nicely in the wilds of Montana. The sort of guy who could keep a woman fed, watered and smiling without the aid of any modern conveniences. I liked Rhett which was a good thing because I had more difficulties with A.J.. She was, by turns, strong, determined, horny, hurt, needy, and a whole bunch of other things, capped off by weepy. On Rhett’s chest. Now I’m the first to admit a good chest is worth snuggling up to, but A.J. was so strong on one hand, it was a little jarring to find her collapsing all over Rhett at the first disemboweled critter she runs into.

Which brings me to what I perceive as the one major flaw here – this book needed a much better edit than it received. Ms. Stone has a good plot, good characters and a neat tale to tell. It should have been tightened considerably by a good edit. Why, out of ten city slickers, didn’t at least one have a cell phone? Why, in an attempt to flee danger, did they remember the bourbon but forget the first aid kit? Small but telling issues that a thorough edit should have remedied.

Ms. Stone has a wonderful way with her characters, and I think you’ll love Rhett every bit as much as I did. His dominating presence really does hold this story together and his heart is out there for us all to understand. I would recommend this story for your palm device because it would make a great commuting read.

Reviewed in April 2003 by Celia.

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