Thursday, July 27, 2006
Deep Breath by Alison Kent
I should start this review off with a personal apology to Alison Kent. I promised her this review back in April. Unfortunately, April saw the beginning of a series of events that flipped my life upside down and inside out. Job loss, the sudden deaths of loved ones, ever-growing financial uncertainty, and all the little, but normal, bumps in between. I’m still out of work and still grieving. At the same time, my stay-at-home time with my son has granted me a peace I never thought to have. I’m reveling in that and plodding forward. Ok. A personal apology AND a sappy personal update. My thanks to everyone for your thoughts and encouragement.
Alison, I am sorry this is so late in coming. But not sorry I made the commitment. I enjoyed Deep Breath immensely. Deep Breath is exactly the type of contemporary, sexy operative story I prefer. As I’ve said before, it is a hero’s competence that captures my attention first. His ability to handle and cope no matter the circumstances. Harry fits the bill, and carries it off with charming nonchalance.
That nonchalance was important because it allowed him to “appear” disinterested in the outcome; there by accident to help her retrieve confidential documents and free her brother. Even though, all the while, he was after the same end. I’ll admit, I kept waiting for Georgia to ditch him and continue her search on her own—her well-established MO. For a brief period early in the story, I didn’t fully accept the premise that tossed them together. Kent pulled me through the set up however, and deftly tied Georgia’s acquiescence to a bone-deep weariness she could no longer ignore. That in turn gave her a vulnerability that appealed to hero and reader alike.
Another characterization I tend to like. That of a highly competent, but exhausted heroine. I can identify with a woman in this state, perhaps more so now that I am home with my son. It may sound contrived, but I really do not know how I managed to “do it all” as a working Mom. What I do know, and do recall, was being so tired some days that I just wanted to curl up against a strong chest and let someone else do the hard stuff. Didn’t make me weak or incapable, didn’t mean I stopped doing what I had to do. It just meant that if said strong chest had been available, I’d have clung to it in a heartbeat. Like Georgia.
The suspense and its pace were well measured and Kent’s secondary characters well developed. I particularly liked Georgia’s brother. He exhibited a humor and competence I found very appealing as well.
Oh, and the intimacy between Harry and Georgia was as erotic as the book’s cover. It was highly charged and emotional—with Harry’s dry wit serving to quell Georgia’s nerves. Very honest stuff.
As this was my first Kent book, I have clearly read “out of order”. It did not matter in the reading of Deep Breath. But I am intrigued enough—given what I learned of SG-5 here—to go back and catch up the series.