Guilty as Sin by Jami Alden

Guilty as Sin by Jami Alden
Publisher: Forever
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (430 pgs)
Heat: Hot
Rated: 4 Stars
Review by Poppy

For over a decade, a killer has been waiting, silent as death and . . .

Fourteen years ago, Kate Beckett was a teenager more interested in summer romance than babysitting. Then the unthinkable happened: her younger brother was kidnapped and murdered on her watch. Now she is an advocate for missing children, and her newest case brings her back to the small town where she lost her brother-and where she left behind the first boy she ever loved.

Tommy Ibarra’s world fell apart after Kate broke his heart, and he’s spent his adult life making sure that he’ll never be vulnerable again. When a teenage girl vanishes, he offers his expertise as a high tech security expert to help find her. Although he’s determined to keep his distance from Kate, it isn’t long before he’s falling under her spell all over again.

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This was one smoking hot suspense. I’ve seen it called “erotic romance” in a few places, but I wouldn’t go that far. Yes, there was sex and a whole lot of it, described in great detail, but it’s pretty vanilla and doesn’t stray into the territories the majority of erotic romance does these days.

Now let’s talk plot… first off, the beginning of this book which takes place fourteen years prior to the rest about broke my heart. The heroine’s father is a complete jerk and even up to the end of this book, I struggled to forgive him. He went out of his way to tear down his daughter and fill her with guilt, and also to destroy our hero before he was old enough to defend himself.

I had some issues with Tommy’s hatred of Kate — as if it were somehow her fault that her father was a creep. Yes, she didn’t defend Tommy when they were teens, but they were both very young and traumatized. I loved, LOVED, Tommy’s mother. What an amazing lady.

Ms. Alden really created some solid characters that I came to care about. Her writing is polished and flows nicely as well. The plot was good, though I wasn’t honestly surprised at the villain, it was still interesting to read through and follow our protagonists as they followed clues to rescue the kidnapped girl.

I admit that sometimes Kate and Tommy’s sex scenes seemed a bit out of place, almost as if they were able to forget there was a girl out there being held against her will and just give into their screaming hormones. I wish, too, that there had been just a little more tension and build up to the actual deed. Still, for folks who crave heat in their books, this one will certainly fit the bill.

This was my first foray into a story by Jami Alden. I was impressed by her skill, her creative ability and her fantastically real characters. Although the sex was a bit overwhelming at times, I still very much enjoyed the story and will be certain to check out more books from her in the future.

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