Marji Laine reviews.
I had a delightful time reading Shake Down by Jill Elizabeth Nelson. A new author for me, but I saw her interview on Suspense Sisters, so I couldn't resist trying out this Love Inspired Suspense.
Here is the set-up:
Real estate agent Janice Swenson travels to Martha's Vineyard to prepare the house of a notorious, late gangster for sale on behalf of the heir. At least that's her story. Her secrets don't entirely protect her, though. Vandalism and what seems like random attacks continue to plague her. And the nearby neighbor who keeps hanging around provides protection, but often shows up at strange moments.
That neighbor, Shane Gillum, has secrets of his own, as well as ulterior motives for moving into a rental near the gangster's home. The arrival of the Realtor stifles his desperate search. But someone is intent to end all activity at the house and rid Martha's Vineyard of both Janice and Shane.
Janice is sure that her secrets are causing the problems, and she regrets putting Shane at risk. At the same time, Shane worries about Janice in her treacherous position at the house. Yet neither can trust the other enough to share the truths...and keeping silent about the mysterious place knots them both in the cottage's deadly secrets.
Great things go on in this book! Both characters have strong back-stories that seep out a little at a time. Both also, despite the chemistry that is immediately apparent between them, have good reasons to avoid anything resembling romance. (Yeah, right.) The author challenges readers with the twists and quick turns in this story, and the characters practically jump from the page. Especially a huge shaggy dog named Atlas. What a hoot he is!
I loved this book and look forward to enjoining more from Jill Elizabeth Nelson. Her story is perfect for a day of rest and indulgence. Grab that favorite warm drink and a truffle and enjoy!
More about the reviewer:
Marji Laine is an aspiring novelist, but has a number of collaborative novellas to her credit. In fact, the latest one, Love Boat Bachelor, is currently appearing at Write Integrity Press and will be available for free at Amazon on February 14th. In addition to writing, she's spent the last month photographing various events for friends and family and is looking forward to gaining a daughter-in-love very soon.