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Mystery Books - Elizabeth Jennings - Pursuit

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Pursuit
Elizabeth Jennings
Forever 2008
Paperback 352 pages

Pursuit is Elizabeth Jennings ' eighth book. This is not a mystery novel as it falls under the category romantic suspense. If typical of the genre, Pursuit feels, to this uninitiated reader like a mix between a light police drama and a sophisticated Harlequin. The shadowy, shirtless male gracing the cover is a hint.

Pursuit jumps right in, packed with action, intensity, and emotion. The ingredients are present for a good read: murder, envy, big money, suspense, and references to Al Qaeda and the U.S. military which seem prevalent in many current mysteries.

This is a novel of contrasts between good and evil, security and fear, and the polarity between the sexes, all set within a smooth plot that is interesting, direct, and easy to follow. Even the idyllic, calm surroundings of Mexico contrast sharply with the impending danger and keep the reader pleasantly vigilant.

Elizabeth Jennings is a talented writer. Her descriptions are detailed and vivid; pure escapism that provides a real sensory and sometimes visceral experience.

She keeps the number of characters manageable, allowing for excellent in-depth exploration and insight into their personalities, idiosyncrasies, and motivations. Her main players are Charlotte Court, who flees to Mexico to escape conviction for a murder she did not commit, and former Navy Seal Matt Sanders, her resident protector.

Lesser but crucial roles are given to Barrett, the hired assassin whose brutality and cold logic are both disturbing and compelling, and Robert Haines, a ruthless man driven by money and power.

Being a romantic suspense novel, Pursuit incorporate unique yet overlapping moods and plot lines, namely the usual twist of fate that brings Court and Sanders together, and the mad attraction that ensues.

Those who love the allure and escapism of the genre will enjoy the whirlwind of raw physicality and unconventional circumstances that pull them together.

Coming from discrepant worlds, Matt, strapping, virile, and aggressive, is the epitome of masculinity; a superhero without the cape, high on brawn and brain, overbearing and in need of more than a dose of finesse, his intrepid military instincts kick in as he invades a virtual stranger's life to fiercely protect her from future harm.

Charlotte, intelligent and beautiful, and born of privilege, lives from her art and those for whom she cares deeply. Matt is unlike any man she has ever known.

The two share a common bond of survival and inevitably, sparks fly.

Quickly ignited, there is heat. However, some scenes far from being steamy, are almost too clinical and thus amputate any sense of romance or desire. There's something to be said for subtlety

Subtle or not, the mystery novel purist might prefer that more than a smattering of warm fuzzies be left at home.

Likewise, it is doubtful that a male audience would be enamoured by Pursuit by Elizabeth Jennings. However, those with a sense of adventure and an enthusiasm for the fantasy and escapism of the genre might very well eat it up.

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