Wednesday, July 23, 2014

ARC Review: Invincible by Diana Palmer

Author: Diana Palmer
Publication: Harlequin HQN (July 29, 2014)

Description: He's everything she fears…

and everything she wants

Mercenary by name and by nature, Carson is a Lakota Sioux who stays to himself and never keeps women around long enough for anything emotional to develop. But working with his friend Cash Grier on a complex murder investigation provides Carson with another kind of fun—shocking Cash's sweet-but-traditional secretary, Carlie Blair, with tales of his latest conquests.

Then Carlie lands in deep trouble. She saw something she shouldn't have, and now the face of a criminal is stored permanently in her photographic memory…and Carlie is the key piece of evidence that could implicate a popular politician in the murder case.

Her only protection is Carson—the man she once despised. But when she learns that Carson is more than just a tough guy, Carlie realizes she's endangered herself further. Because now her only chance to live means losing her heart to the most dangerous kind of man….

My Thoughts: INVINCIBLE was a typical Diana Palmer romance. It was a little repetitious, had a host of characters who all dropped hints about their backstories, and had a romance between the innocent, poor young woman and the cynical older man.

Carlie Blair has spent in life in Comanche Wells, Texas, a suburb of Jacobsville - the town where everyone is apparently a former mercenary. She works for the police chief as a secretary. She has a major crush on Carson who, besides being a mercenary, happens to be Lakota Sioux - giving plenty of opportunity for Palmer to give tidbits about Lakota history and culture. Everyone knows, and tells Carlie, that Carson is too much for her - too cynical, too much like a wolf to ever settle down. Carlie agrees but that doesn't stop her from falling in love with him.

Someone is trying to kill Carlie which unites the mercenaries, government agents, and law enforcement personnel in trying to protect her. Of course, they could also be trying to kill her father - former government covert agent now turned Methodist minister.

The plot of this one is quite convoluted and apparently begun in an earlier book by the author. All the guys on the good side are trying to find evidence to bring down Senator Matthew Helm who is a criminal who used underhanded, and illegal, tactics to gain his political position.

The romance had the usual Palmer tensions. Carlie was a woman of faith who held to old-fashioned values regarding intimacy; Carson was known for the constant parade of beautiful women who came and went in his life. She had faith; he had long since lost his. She had difficulties in her past that could have broken her, but she healed. He had difficulties in his past that he hadn't yet come to terms with. One thing that I particularly notice about Palmer romances is how friendless the female lead is. While everyone in town seems to respect and look out for her, she doesn't have any close female friends. On the other hand, the hero has a whole network of men who are close to him.

This was a good romance for those who like suspense in their books too.

Favorite Quote:
She crossed her arms with a sigh. "You can't run away from the past," she said gently. "It's portable. No matter how far you go, it travels with you. Until you come to grips with it, face what you're running from, you'll never be satisfied."
I got this ARC from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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