Captivated by Annette Mori is yet another quirky, humor-filled, out of the box type of story that fans have come to expect from her, and new readers are sure to love. Juliet Lewis accidentally saw the new local police officer, Tanner Sullivan, kill a drug dealer execution-style, in cold blood. She takes off, running for her life, but the next thing she knows, she’s waking up, bound to a chair with a gun to her head, and Tanner’s face smirking at her. The story that follows includes an unexpected attraction, some serious bad guys, a lot of compulsive cleaning, and maybe, just maybe a bit of love and understanding in the end.
Juliet is not your typical romance novel heroine. First of all, she has some annoying habits. She’s borderline OCD, a result of intense parental indoctrination at a very young age, which could definitely be considered abusive. Juliet has never been able to move past these learned responses. She’s also been alone much of her life, and is thought of by her fellow townsfolk as strange. She’s decided to get her revenge by writing a tell-all book about the town she lives in, so much of her free time is spent spying on her neighbors and fellow citizens, and taking copious amounts of notes about their activities. She also, according to her grandmother, has a lamentable habit of sticking her nose into other people’s business.
Tanner Sullivan is on a mission. She’s been a rogue cop for quite a few years, taking matters into her own hands when the legal system fails to deliver justice to those criminals who need to be taken down. She lives by her own code, determined to do what’s right. Her last partner, professional and personal, was killed by the head of a criminal organization on a job that was supposed to be Tanner’s, so Tanner is determined that justice will be served. She’s taken a job in this small town in order to get close to one of the crime boss’s men. In fact, that’s who she killed, and now she has to decide what to do with Juliette, whose nosiness has made her the only one who can expose her.
The Writing Style
This story is told in third person. The pacing is swift, and the plot twists keep coming. Mori has written a story that makes you keep turning pages, just to see what will happen next. Not only that, but she has a way of writing the bad guys that keeps you guessing because the real criminal could be any one of a number of suspects.
I love the fact that neither of these characters fits the mold. There are times when Juliet is so annoying, you can’t help but wonder how Tanner refrains from shooting her. And Tanner is such an honorable character, yet she commits the most dishonorable crimes without batting an eye. Even the fact that they end up together is an astonishing feat of writer-ly glory.
I have to say that I think Juliet made some questionable (okay, dumb) choices that made me want to slap her. Maybe it was part of her personality, but it’s hard to reconcile, because she otherwise seems pretty smart.
Annette Mori has made a career out of writing genre mash-ups, meaning her books tend to mix the romance with other genres. This particular book is in the suspense category, but there’s definitely enough time to stop and smell the romance along the way. And like usual, Mori delivers a tale that entertains, somewhat enlightens, and definitely satisfies. So yeah, buy it, read it, love it.
Excerpt from Captivated by Annette Mori
Juliet started to squirm as she realized she needed to go to the bathroom and glumly noted that once that thought was in her head, she wouldn’t be able to erase it, unable to think of anything but her need to urinate.
She tilted her head, looked up at the ceiling, and in an effort to sidetrack her brain, started singing an old song from one of her all-time favorite musicals. The light, airy sound of her alto voice floated in the room.
A loud guffaw filled the small cabin as Juliet heard a creaking sound. She turned her head to the door and found Tanner’s laughing eyes.
“You’re singing ‘I Whistle a Happy Tune’ from The King and I? How cliché.” Tanner continued to laugh. “Nice voice, by the way.”
“Thanks. I think. Um… do you think I could use the washroom? I really have to pee.”
Tanner blushed. “Oh… uh… yeah… um… shoot, I didn’t think about that. Look, if I cut off your zip ties and let you use the washroom, will you be compliant and come back? I would sincerely hate having to hunt you down like a wild animal. I’m still considering my options, and if you take away my other alternatives, I will have no choice but to kill you. I’d really rather not make that decision.”
Juliet nodded so vigorously that she felt like she might be mistaken for one of those bobble heads. A part of her decided to adhere to Tanner’s request because she was petrified that Tanner would track her down, and without remorse follow through with her threat. Yet a bigger part of her was curious why Tanner had killed that man in cold blood. She had to find out, even if it meant risking her life.
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9780947528331
- Publisher: Affinity E-Book Press NZ LTD
Annette Mori Online
Note: I received a free review copy of Captivated by Annette Mori. No money was exchanged for this review. I will always review books as honestly as possible and on occasion I refuse to review books.