Fiona Bristow was the lucky one. Destined to be the 13th victim of the Red Scarf Killer serial killer, she fought back, escaped and he was captured, prosecuted and jailed. Fiona's fiancee was also a victim. She has retreated to Orcas Island where she works as a dog trainer and also leads a volunteer canine search and rescue group. Simon, a talented wood artist, is also looking for peace and quiet when he moves to Orcas. But his puppy Jaws needs professional help and he seeks out Fee. Well, sparks fly.... But danger is afoot as well. Although the killer is safely behind bars, someone seems to be on a mission to duplicate his work. Is Fiona in his sights?
Roberts has created a strong female lead in Fiona. Simon is the rough and ready, not looking for a relationship kind of guy (who of course just happens to be really attractive) The interactions between the two are entertaining if not wholly believable. I got a little tired of hearing Simon say shut up. There's some steamy sex scenes between the two that did a steamy day justice. For the most part, the story is more on their budding relationship with the killer taking a back seat. Yes the suspense is there, but those looking for a high level thriller won't find it here.
As a dog lover, what I did really like were the dog training scenes. Lots of good information, some I've tried - I've got one who likes to jump up on people - and it worked! I found the search and rescue operations and methodology just as interesting. Some readers may find this slows them down. Great dog quote from the book "One of the best things about dogs, to Fiona's mind, was their absolute joy in welcoming you home, whether you'd been gone for five minutes or five days. There lay unconditional and boundless love. 'And I really liked her descriptions of the setting she chose. A cute little cottage in the woods, with beaches nearby? Sign me up. Orcas Island is real.
So I enjoyed my first foray into Roberts' territory - great escapist reading that didn't tax my brain. Fans of romantic suspense will enjoy Nora Roberts. It kind of reminded me a bit of Iris Johansen's writing. I can see why she's at the top of her game.
Read an excerpt of The Search.
Roberts also writes under the nom de plume of J.D. Robb and has a highly successful 30 book series - the futuristic In Death books.