TO DIE FOR
Pocket, January 2005
Reviewed by Barbara Fielding
Blair Mallory, owner of a successful health club Great Bods, is the sole witness to a murder. Nicole Goodwin, a club member who reinvented herself as Blair's double, is murdered in the back parking lot of the health club just as Blair was closing up for the night. Her frantic call to 911 brings an old flame, Lt. Wyatt Bloodsworth, back into her life.
Two years earlier, Blair dated the handsome cop, but after their second date he walked away with no explanation. Afterwards, Blair created some new ground rules; if you walk away from Blair Mallory, you crawl back. However, things aren't going exactly as she planned. The chemistry between her and Wyatt has a way of making her resolve melt. When the killer begins to stalk her, Wyatt is determined to keep her safe. Wyatt places her under his protective custody and takes her to stay at his house. But Blair isn't going to make this easy for him; he must work for it if he wants to build a relationship with her.
TO DIE FOR is a romantic comedy with some lite suspense thrown in on the side. It's written in the first person voice of Blair Mallory. Blair is a blond, mouthy ex-cheerleader with a great sense of humor. Readers will enjoy getting to know all of the characters through her narration. Extended family members include Blair's parents, two sisters and Wyatt's mother. It's a delightful cast of characters.
At the start TO DIE FOR is driven by the suspense over who killed Nicole and discovering who is trying to kill Blair, but as the romance between Wyatt and Blair grows the story shifts. The second half is driven by their troublesome and comedic relationship. Ms. Howard, who is well-known for writing excellent male point of view stories, has departed from her usual writing style and given readers a hilariously funny and appealing heroine. This is a quick and entertaining read by one of the brightest stars in romantic fiction.
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