This anthology came to me by way of Sybil and her bottomless bag o’ books. It’s an interesting mix of all sorts of stories, some romance, some not. A nice way to while away some time waiting in line at your kid’s school at dismissal time.
I suppose there’s a common theme in the stories, though it’s tenuous. As I write these reviews I’ll try to point out the things holding them together. Meanwhile, on with the reviews…
Missing In Death by J.D. Robb
Futuristic Suspense (93-pages)
This is a very good entry in the Eve Dallas world. It revolves around the mysterious disappearance of a woman on a ferry and an apparent murder with no body.
The story is delightfully twisty and turny, with lots of sleuthing by Eve and Peabody. The story talks to old hurts and long-held revenge. It’s a good In Death story – not the best, but still quite good.
Now to the anth title: I suppose the “lost” things in this story would be the body, the woman on the ferry, and the villain’s family.
Wile investigating a woman’s disappearance on a New York City ferry, Detective Eve Dallas wonders… if she didn’t jump, and she’s not on board, then where in the world is she?
Read an excerpt here.
The Dog Days of Laurie Summer by Patricia Gaffney
This was an odd little story. A tad too long, and not really a romance. However, it does describe the heroine’s love for her family, and how she falls back in love with them
I classified this as “chick lit” because it’s a nice little tale about how a woman rediscovers the love she has for her life, her family, and her self. Prior to a literal life-changing event, our heroine, Laurie, was a pretty typical type-A personality. She worked too much and thought too little about what was really important in her life. The event shocks her out of this rut and spins her out into a truly odd road of discovery.
I enjoyed this story, though this kind of writing is not really my bag.
The anth title: I’m guessing the “lost” things in this story would be the heroine’s awareness of her family.
After recovering from a severe accident, a woman awakens to a world as familiar as it is strange and unsettling.
Read an excerpt here.
Lost In Paradise by Mary Blayney
Paranormal/Inspirational Romance (87-pages)
This was an unusual little story. It reads quick and has a nice pace, though I found the genre, and thus the book, a little tough to pin down. It’s a definite “slash” book.
The romance between the main characters is a little convenient and quick. I know that short stories and anthology entries force an author to truncate some things, but this romance felt even too quick for that.
I called this a “paranormal/inspirational” because it is the heroine’s strong faith in God and her purity that helps break a curse. Though, in true romance novel fashion, she doesn’t remain a virgin for long with the hero’s manliness on the scene. And this was part of my personal confusion with the book. I didn’t know where to stand on it – figuratively speaking.
Good, but not great story.
The anth title: I suppose the “lost” things in this story is the hero and his hope.
A man cursed to stay behind the walls of an island fortress finds hope in a nuirse who’s shipwrecked and in possession of the one thing that could set him free.
No excerpt available.
Legacy by Ruth Ryan Langan
Contemporary Romance (88-pages)
This was the only true “romance” of all the stories in the book. And it’s quite good.
I like the heroine, though she is a bit milquetoast for me. The hero is extremely yummy. Their romance develops quickly, but is believable. The plot twists involving her family are a bit silly in their complexity and seeming secrecy, but nonetheless lend a decent amount of suspense to the story.
This is a fun romance to read.
The anth title: the “lost” things in this story are the heroine and her family.
In the wake of her mother’s death, a young woman’s travels unearth a family secret buried on the grounds of a magnificent but imposing Irish estate.
No excerpt available.
I liked this anthology. The Robb and Ryan Langan stories make it worth the purchase. The other two stories are good, but forgettable. If you’re following the In Death stories, you shouldn’t miss this one.
Overall Grade: B-
Four bestselling authors venture into a world where the rules of love, of time, and of place can be forever lost…