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Reviewed by Brenda Casto for Readers' Favorite
It's the end of another busy Saturday night at the Harvest Bistro, the restaurant that Claire Layton owns in her tiny hometown, Dry Creek, Nebraska. While taking out the trash, Claire is totally shocked to find a dead body in her dumpster, and what's worse, she recognizes the girl as someone who ate at the restaurant earlier in the evening. Claire calls the recently elected police chief, who also happens to be her brother, Hank. After the police arrive, Claire gets a call from someone demanding the murder victim's cell phone and flash drive and threatens her family if she doesn't come up with it. Jake Warrick, from Absolute Security, comes to Dry Creek, having been hired by the victim's family to keep an eye on the investigation. The victim's father wants the flash drive and phone and wants Jake to get it any way he has to; he uses threats against Jake's sick father to try and get him to comply. Jake soon realizes the killer is after Claire and decides to protect her. While a relationship is the last thing that Jake or Claire want, sparks fly whenever they are together. Can they guard their hearts while trying to stay alive?
What a fantastic kick off for this exciting new series! I really enjoyed the mystery that surrounded this one, but must say that the electricity between Jake and Claire had me wondering if I might start seeing smoke rise from my Kindle! I found Claire's character quite enjoyable; she was full of spunk and didn't care to jump into the middle of things. Having grown up in a family with three brothers it was easy to see why she was a bit tough, but vulnerable as well. I liked that we got her background story early on, allowing us to easily understand why she was guarding her heart. The small town flavor for this story allows us to connect with Claire's family as well. Her mother seemed to be quite the character, and the banter that often went on between the siblings was funny, to say the least. I always enjoy when an author takes the time to include a dog in the story, and Claire's mixed breed dog, Onion, was easy to imagine.
I would caution that if reading sex scenes isn't your thing, then you might not enjoy this one; but I found it a very entertaining read, and the cliff hanger that the author leaves us with at the ending, definitely makes me want to take another trip to Dry Creek!