Thursday, January 6, 2011

"A Cold Day In Hell" by Stella Cameron

Eileen Moggeridge is a single mother to Aaron, but in a rapidly progressing romantic relationship with Christian "Angel" DeAngelo. He's got some sort of mercenary past (like most blokes in these sorts of romantic thrillers), and is the legal guardian of Sonny, a protected witness. Eileen's life becomes complicated when first her ex-husband Chuck shows up, wanting to reunite the family and spend more time with his son. Then Aaron is injured in a mysterious shooting. And then both her and Angel are seemingly the target of a mad shooter.

Other mysterious events are occuring in their town of Pointe Judah. Heavily pregnant Emma Duhon is attacked by an anonymous stranger in the parking lot. A local worker goes missing. Could all these events be linked? And how?

Stella Cameron is another romantic suspense novelist who likes to link all her novels together, with just about all the characters having had a story of their own. It sometimes gets hard to keep track of all the characters and their histories. For example, the parking lot attacker seems to be aggrieved by a club that a few characters were once members of, but it's obvious that club and the story behind it is from another novel entirely. So what is it doing here? Coming into the story cold, we don't know enough about it to understand who it affects - or why. There are continued references to experiences the characters have had, and we're simply left to assume that it's from another connected book. To me it seems to be a cheap way of dispensing with character development - the author can simply assume the reader has read all the other books in the series and is already familiar with the characters' various traits.

Sorry, no dice.

I'm probably being too picky on something I bought for $2 from an Op Shop, but the original selling price was $16.95, which is absolutely outrageous for a product with such shoddy, threadbare plotting like this. In the end, the biggest issue is indifference. It's not good enough for me to recommend, nor is it bad enough for me to rip it to shreds. I simply read it and promptly forgot about it.

No comments:

Post a Comment