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Book CoverSandy M’s review of Dealing with Annie (Cooper’s Corner, Book 17) by Jill Shalvis
Contemporary Romance published by Harlequin Special Releases 27 Feb 17

I’ve been in sort of a reading slump lately – everything I pick up to read just falls flat and I’m quickly searching for something else. So when I came across this Jill Shalvis book, I settled in because I knew her story would finally work for me and hopefully get me back on track.

Annie Hughes has finally made it in the cosmetics industry. Her little company is getting the recognition it deserves, and she’s found some peace and happiness in Cooper’s Corner. Ethan McCall is a big-city cop who is recuperating from a gunshot wound thanks to a take-down gone wrong – including the slimeball drug dealer he’s been after forever getting away once again. His commander has put him desk duty, so he’s come to Cooper’s Corner to relax and heal instead. But the peace and quiet and long boring days are driving Ethan nuts.

That is until he meets Annie. She lives across the way from Ethan’s brother, and when Ethan returns her phone, which was ringing in her mailbox of all places, he likes very much what he sees. He also knows someone is out to hurt Annie. Things aren’t adding up, and Ethan has learned to trust his gut. But Annie isn’t having it. Who would want to hurt her? Well, there’s her biggest rival who doesn’t like the fact Annie’s products are up and coming and making waves. However, Annie has too much on her plate to worry about it. New products need to be worked on and her Aunt Gerdie needs more and more of her time.

Ethan does his best to mind his own business, but both the lure of Annie and his cop sense won’t leave him be. He knows something is wrong, and he’s definitely like a dog with a bone when his instincts kick in. I thoroughly enjoyed how Cooper’s Corner slowly but surely gets its claws into Ethan. He’s so adamant about getting back to his job in the city, the small-town way of life is not for him. Of course, it’s the draw of Annie too that makes Ethan realize his perceptions and wants and needs are changing.

Ms. Shalvis does a good job of deflecting suspicion when it comes to the villain. There are a few to choose from, so you’re a bit off balance until the reveal is finally made. This book is a reissue, so while it is made of the fun and romance that we expect from Jill Shalvis, it’s not quite up to par of her works nowadays. Originally published in 2003, you can see all the growth she’s done in those intervening years if you read her current books. But the story still works, has plenty of character development, some good action, and a lovely romance that gives readers a few hours of happiness and delight.

sandym-iconGrade: B


Danger comes to Cooper’s Corner…

Annie Hughes had become the Martha Stewart of cosmetics. But when DEA agent Ethan McCall warned Annie that her company was the target of sabotage—and that she was in danger— she wouldn’t listen. Then Annie disappeared. And only Ethan could rescue her.

No excerpt available.