by Susan Andersen

February 1993
ISBN: 0-8217-6677-5
Reviewer Graphic Button Zebra Books
Mass Market Paperback

Can a woman striving for independence, love and commit to a man who is used to taking over control? And will that love and commitment be returned?

Well, yes, of course! Let Susan Andersen show you in Present Danger how it's done.

Aunie Franklin, a petite southern belle on the run from her ex-husband, finds herself a place to stay in Seattle. Having only ever been seen as a pretty face, she sets out to experience a hot affair, earn a college degree and gain her self-respect in the process. Her landlord is James Ryder, known as one tough guy from the wrong part of town with an off-beat sense of humour....

There is more to James Ryder, who is, by the way, a fine example of the very male species. He is of powerful physique, beautiful to look at, caring and protective when needed, artistic, a perfect handyman and one rough and ready lover. Hmm, just want to eat him all up!

With the possibility of Aunie's ex turning up, taking revenge on her for the divorce and some creepy, anonymous phone calls that she had been receiving, James takes over her education in self-defence, only to find himself defenceless against her charms and loving nature.

It's not just the romance and the suspense Ms. Andersen concentrates on. She challenges the reader by raising problematic issues such as abortion, adoption, unprotected sex, drug abuse, domestic violence and racism. With these issues being addressed, the atmosphere lacks the light and funny tone of her latest books. Some of her employed elements like lengthy flashbacks, erratic changes of point-of-view and the explicit description of violence make Present Danger sometimes an awkward and painful read.

However, those elements give the reader an appreciation of Susan Andersen's current smooth, flowing and fast paced style. And with characters ready to leap of the pages, a hero to fall in love with, and glimpses of her funny voice and comedic timing, this is a must read, not only for Susan Andersen fans.

Reviewed in September 2001 by Kris Alice.

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