Burning Cove #3
By Amanda Quick
Author’s website: jayneannkrentz.com
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Daniele
An unconventional woman and a man shrouded in mystery walk a tightrope of desire as they race against a killer to find a machine that could change the world.
Former trapeze artist Amalie Vaughn moved to Burning Cove to reinvent herself, but things are not going well. After spending her entire inheritance on a mansion with the intention of turning it into a bed-and-breakfast, she learns too late that the villa is said to be cursed. When the first guest, Dr. Norman Pickwell, is murdered by his robot invention during a sold-out demonstration, rumors circulate that the curse is real.
In the chaotic aftermath of the spectacle, Amalie watches as a stranger from the audience disappears behind the curtain. When Matthias Jones reappears, he is slipping a gun into a concealed holster. It looks like the gossip that is swirling around him is true—Matthias evidently does have connections to the criminal underworld.
Matthias is on the trail of a groundbreaking prototype cipher machine. He suspects that Pickwell stole the device and planned to sell it. But now Pickwell is dead and the machine has vanished. When Matthias’s investigation leads him to Amalie’s front door, the attraction between them is intense, but she knows it is also dangerous. Amalie and Matthias must decide if they can trust each other and the passion that binds them, because time is running out.
Tightrope tells the saucy tale of former trapeze artist Amalie and Matthias, an investigator with more than just intuition going for him, and their unlikely quest to solve a murder, find a cipher that could be dangerous in the wrong hands, and deal with a serial killer and the mob. Full of madcap adventure and 1930s Hollywood glamour, it is a fun period romantic adventure.
There is a lot going on in Tightrope, and, though it gets a bit messy at times, it maintains a good story arc. The premise of the book it interesting, and Amalie is an engaging heroine. Imagine the trauma a professional, lifelong trapeze artist must experience to now be afraid of heights and unable to continue with the circus. She gives up her way of life and “family” to settle in Burning Cove, California, with her aunt to run an inn. An inn that came at the right price but now has the reputation for being cursed. Enter Matthias and his somewhat supernatural ability, and the danger ratchets up and sparks fly.
I like Amalie a lot. She is made of stern stuff and is smart and brave while maintaining the femininity of the era. Matthias is mysterious enough to garner attention, but he swiftly becomes an open book. The two make a good pair and have chemistry, but it seems like they come together too quickly, feeling a little forced at the beginning. Other characters, including Amalie’s aunt, washed up horror actor Vincent Hyde, and nightclub owner Luther Pell help round out the story without adding simple filler. I was surprised by the culprits’ identities and second guessing myself throughout the book added to my enjoyment. This is the third book in Amanda Quick’s Burning Cove series, but it can easily be read as a standalone novel.
I enjoyed Tightrope and recommend it to the author’s fans and romance readers looking for Hollywood glitz with the slightest hint of the supernatural.
*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*