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4 stars for Island Heat by Debby Grahl #romanticsuspense #newrelease #bookreview



Title: Island Heat

Author: Debby Grahl

Genre: Romantic Suspense


Book Blurb:


When bookstore owner Suzanna Shay and writer Austen Kincade meet on a Who Done It mystery cruise, their instant attraction has them more interested in romance than searching for clues. But when the leading actress in the shipboard murder skit, Austen’s publisher’s wife, throws herself at Austen, she’s furious when he rejects her advances and vows to have Austen no matter what it takes.


After the ship docks, with plans for a future together, Suzanna and Austen part, unaware vindictive lies will soon test their newfound love and entangle them in a real mystery that proves deadly.


My Review:


I love cruises, and a story revolving around a mystery cruise was such a fun way to open the story. Suzanna Shay is a young woman trapped in a ho-hum life until she finds out she's won a spot on the mystery cruise. Her domineering mother warns her of the dangers of being a young woman alone, but Suzanna is tired of being a timid mouse and wants adventure. To say she was in for quite an adventure is an understatement with everything that happens to her aboard the ship.


From the moment Suzanna meets thriller writer Austen Kincaid onboard, she can't stop the fluttering in her belly. He's the most handsome man she's ever met, and decides this will be the time for her to shed her little mouse personality and be bold. From the moment these two get together, their heat is scorching while they try to figure out the clues to the mystery. The heat level is intense so those who prefer a sweet story might want to look elsewhere.


Haley Henderson is not a woman to be scorned. She's the owner, along with her husband Brad of H&H Publishing, the same publishing house that Austen is offered a contract. Known for extra-marital affairs in the past, the moment she sets her eyes on Austen, she wants the hunky writer. She will do whatever is necessary to have him. Problem is, Austen has no interest in her and tells her so. Never one to be denied anything, Haley goes to more and more bizarre ways to get Austen into her bed, including blackmail. Unfortunately for Austen, Haley tells Suzanna of their fake affair, which devastates Suzanna, and she ends their romance heartbroken.


A year later, Austen is invited to a mystery conference, and Suzanna's new bookstore in Hilton Head is one of the sponsors. When she sees Austen, she tries to brush him off, but after a lot of groveling and extensive explanations, Suzanna finally realizes that she's been a victim of Haley's viciousness. The events at the conference keep the story moving forward at a fast pace, and without revealing any more of the plot, I was surprised by how the story ends. It was everything a good mystery needs, and I enjoyed it immensely. My only slight criticism is that so much was made of Suzanna's domineering mother at the beginning of the book; I was a little disappointed when she didn't make an appearance at the end of the book, especially since she had read Austen's book. Ms. Grahl has woven an intriguing and exciting mystery that will keep readers turning the pages.


My Rating: 4 stars


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Author Biography:


Award-winning author Debby Grahl lives on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, with her husband David. Besides writing, she enjoys biking, walking on the beach, and a glass of wine at sunset. Visually impaired since childhood by Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), she uses screen-reading software to research and write her books.


Rue Toulouse, a contemporary romance set in the French Quarter, medalled as second place in the Readers’ Favorite international competition, and was awarded first place in the Top Shelf Fiction for the Romance category. His Magic Touch is a paranormal romance, also set in New Orleans. Her latest book, Island Heat, will be released May 1, 2023, and will be the second book in her three-part Carolina series. The first, Mountain Blaze, released November 2, 2020, has received a five-star review from Readers’ Favorite.


Social Media Links:


Twitter -- https://twitter.com/DebbyGrahl


Reviewed by: Debra

1 ความคิดเห็น


Jan K Sikes
Jan K Sikes
18 พ.ค. 2566

I am a fan of Ms. Grahl's writing and I have just snagged a copy of this book. It sounds SO good! Great review!

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