The Past Came Hunting by Donnell Ann BellRomantic Thriller
I didn't expect much from this book. I think because I had purchased it so cheaply on Amazon. In the past, that has usually meant a book of low quality. And, I didn't like the cover so much (I know that makes me a shallow book-chooser, but there you have it).
I was so pleasantly surprised by this read. The action and characters caught me right away and didn't really let go until the last page. The plot line was unique and interesting, realistic but adventurous enough to keep it from too commonplace. The characters, all of them, were finely developed and the dialogue was at times funny, sad, hopeful...everything dialogue should be.
The story is about a young woman named Mel who made a terrible mistake at a young age. This mistake caused her to go to jail for a crime she didn't commit. Mel learned quickly from her mistakes and dedicated herself to becoming a better person. Years later, she finds herself living beside the very man who arrested her all those years ago and he seems determined to focus on the old Mel, not the new one. That's a bit hard for him, though, because he's really attracted to the new Mel. Naturally, the two fall in love but are hampered in their destiny of a happy ending by a criminal whom Mel helped convict. He's out of prison and set on revenge, hoping to take Mel's new life away from her.
I really liked the book, but could probably only recommend it for female readers. It's got just enough romance in it that most males wouldn't like. More romance than thriller. This is also the one part of the book I'm going to have to complain about, which I hate to do because it will, perhaps,s make me sound like a perv. Regardless...most of the romantic scenes in the book were really hot and exciting. The sexual tension was leading up to a very satisfying conclusion. On the day of "the big event", however, I was terribly disappointed. Literally, after all that kissing and sexual innuendo, the author just wrote something along the lines of..."the next morning". What a complete letdown! If you're going to write that much sex into the dialogue leading up to the event, follow it through. It felt like the author was writing just fine when suddenly her mom walked in and caught her and she had to clean it up real fast. It was over so quick, I honestly thought I had skipped a few pages. That's why I feel like a perv--I wasn't reading the book for the quick sexual encounters, but leaning in so far and then backtracking just felt like really poor writing. It was hard to finish the rest of the book because the characters just felt a bit off after that, clearly just characters and not the real people I had been imagining them to be. It went straight from sizzle to fizzle for me. Still, considering the work overall, I stick by the higher rating.