Monday 14 November 2016

Clare Reviews: Sting by Sandra Brown

StingTitle: Sting
Author: Sandra Brown
Source: Received from publisher for an honest review
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Pages: 408
Rating: 4/5
Blurb: When Jordie Bennet and Shaw Kinnard lock eyes across a disreputable backwater bar, something definitely sparks. Shaw gives off a dangerous vibe that makes men wary and inspires women to sit up and take notice. None feel that undercurrent more strongly than savvy businesswoman Jordie, who doesn't belong in a seedy dive on the banks of a bayou. But here she is . . . and Shaw Kinnard is here to kill her. 

As Shaw and his partner take aim, Jordie is certain her time has come. But Shaw has other plans and abducts Jordie, hoping to get his hands on the $30 million her brother has stolen and, presumably, hidden. However, Shaw is not the only one looking for the fortune. Her brother's ruthless boss and the FBI are after it as well. Now on the run from the feds and a notorious criminal, Jordie and Shaw must rely on their wits-and each other-to stay alive. 

Miles away from civilization and surrounded by swampland, the two play each other against their common enemies. Jordie's only chance of survival is to outwit Shaw, but it soon becomes clear to Shaw that Jordie isn't entirely trustworthy, either. Was she in on her brother's scam, or is she an innocent pawn in a deadly vendetta? And just how valuable is her life to Shaw, her remorseless and manipulative captor? Burning for answers-and for each other-this unlikely pair ultimately make a desperate move that could be their last.

From the blurb I was definitely expecting a romance heavy thriller with plenty of double crosses and plot twists. And that's pretty much what the book delivered. Yes, some of the plot twists were a little predictable but for the most part I was pleasantly shocked when secrets were revealed.

Our main characters are Shaw Kinnard and Jordie Bennet. Shaw is a hard as nails hitman sent to kill Jordie who changes his mind and kidnaps her instead - claiming that he can get more money from her brother that way. The details of the hit and the kidnapping were very interesting for me and I loved the way this first part of the book played out. Shaw was plenty ruthless and Jordie was, understandably, terrified. I also really liked how the book switched between their perspectives and those of the FBI agents trying to rescue Jordie and even her brother - whose head is not always a great place to be in.

However, then the romance kicked in. Whilst everything else about this felt realistic to the characters - the romance felt a little rushed, at least at first. And I definitely doubted the sanity of a woman who fell in love with her captor. Especially since he didn't really show her his softer side at all. It definitely felt a little like Stockholm syndrome and I was glad by the end of the book that there was a bit more development even though for me it never quite rang true. 

As I mentioned there are plenty of plot twists - two in particular that I thought were really good. I won't go into it too much because I definitely don't want to spoil the book but the first was surprising although I did share a bit of Jordie's anger. And the second was a pretty brilliant plot twist - it came as a huge surprise towards the end but looking back over the book as a whole it definitely fit in with the plot. I would like to re-read the book with the plot twist in mind and see if I can spot any hints.

There is definitely plenty of action in this book - with Shaw and his partner trying to kill Jordie and then with double crossings and FBI manhunts and more assassins this was definitely not a dull read. I was entertained throughout and I read it in only a couple of sittings. This was my first Sandra Brown novel but it definitely gives me an idea of why she is such a well loved author and I am definitely going to be checking out more of her books in the future. If you are already a fan of Sandra Brown or if you are looking for a great romantic thriller then I definitely recommend giving this one a try.

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