by Elizabeth Jennings

July 2011
ISBN: 978-0-425-24212-4
Reviewer Graphic Button Berkley
Mass Market Paperback

Lucy Merritt has no intention of ever helping the CIA again. She is done with that part of her life, after the CIA and their many missions took her parents from her when she was young. However, the CIA has come calling again and it is an ominous mission indeed. Lucy feels pressure to accept as there is trouble in Nhala, the country of her childhood. Her girlhood friend, Princess Paso, is in danger and is calling on Lucy to help.

Lucy is paired with Captain Mike Shafer, an army man who has seen and done things normal civilians would cower at. He is brave and good and not at all sure Lucy is up for the mission to Nhala, where they will have to play a dangerous game of duplicity and lies in order to discover a flashdrive with the answers to a deadly virus that could devastate humanity. Will they outwit their opponent, a man determined to gain hold of the crown of Nhala and is willing to use any means possible to get it?

Darkness at Dawn is the new romantic suspense title from Elizabeth Jennings. The romance angle is not as strong as I would like. Mike and Lucy hardly get enough time together and it is only in the midst of true danger where it seems their true emotions are engaged. Fortunately, the amusing dialogue they share, coupled with the irrepressible chemistry between them makes it somewhat easier to believe in their happily-ever-after. The suspense, which is for the most part fast-paced, sometimes ruins the growing relationship between Mike and Lucy. In the end, I came away from this book feeling that the romance was very much a secondary part of the story, rather than making this a true romantic suspense title. Not a favorite title but I continue to have high hopes for Elizabeth Jennings’ future books.

Reviewed in August 2011 by Sarah.

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