Sunday, November 13, 2016

ARC Review: Demand by Lisa Renee Jones

Series:     Careless Whispers #2
Pub. Date:May 31, 2016
Publisher:Gallery Books
Length:320 pages
Source:NetGalley

The second installment of the Careless Whispers series, Demand, picks up in the midst of the cliffhanger that probably had you cursing at the end of Denial. Let me take a second here to say a huge thank you to Lisa Renee Jones for her Author's Note at the beginning of this book which summarized (briefly) what happened in Denial. I wish these short summary/explanatory notes were more common in series because sometimes I just can't remember what I had for breakfast yesterday, not to mention what I read six months ago. Usually I use my reviews to trigger my memory... but I was starting this book at 30,000 feet with no wifi! So I very much appreciated that note.

This installment focuses on Ella and Kayden, building their relationship while the amnesia is loosening its grip on her memories. Before I talk about the relationship building though, I want to give my thoughts on the unfolding drama and mystery. LRJ does fabulous suspense and mystery with her romances. I was drawn to Ella's story from the beginning... having been swept off to another country by the unknown David and never seen again, we find her in a foreign country with no money or identification. Then we find out that she has amnesia and is in danger from some unknown person/entity... is that person the man who conveniently rescued her? Or is it someone else. I think the unsurety (that's probably not a word, but you know what I mean) - the unsurety of Ella's situation draws you into the story and makes you greedy for every little fact that is uncovered. More of those details are trickled out in this installment and I was soaking them up like a sponge. Memories are coming back, names are popping up, and the danger is getting very real.  That aspect of the story had me on the edge of my seat.

The relationship between these two has moved along at an instalove clip. I think they have only been together a couple weeks (maybe less) and they got really cozy really fast. That doesn't really bother me, I can deal with instalove when its not overly sappy and not the main focus of the story. And this love story definitely isn't sappy... its full of doubt, strife and lots of lust. Admittedly, the two are hot together, but I was feeling a bit of a disconnect with the relationship in this installment. While trust is building and Ella is on more sure footing with Kayden, there was just something missing to get my emotions tied in with their fate.

I also felt a disconnect with the overall story at times, particularly when the plot line dropped in the midst of something that interested me. For instance, Ella repeatedly has the sensation of feeling watched, so she and Kayden watch surveillance footage... for about 30 seconds. Then they are off to get naked. I wanted to know what was on the surveillance footage dang it!  But oh well. I think all the hair raising feelings that Ella had may come to reveal something in the next book, we'll see. I like where things are going. Questions are getting answered, and in a good way. I'm excited to see how things are tied up in Surrender.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book that I received at no cost from the publisher, Gallery Books.

Careless Whispers