Legacy of Fear by Ryshia Kennie

Legacy of Fear by Ryshia Kennie
Publisher: Beyond the Page Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Short Story (125 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Andra Vandersan is an expert code breaker, as fiercely independent and beautiful as she is brilliant. Working at the highest levels of deciphering, she’s always remained at a safe distance from the seamy underworld of Hong Kong’s criminal elite—but that’s about to change. When her next-door neighbor is brutally murdered in a way that suggests the work of the Chinese triads, two things become clear: Andra was the intended target of the hit, and the assassin is going to return.

Max True is a world-class linguist, a colleague of Andra’s who once helped her break a code that would destroy a terrorist cell. When he shows up at Andra’s door with a mysterious message, they realize they may have stumbled on a long-lost women’s language that holds the secret to incredible power—and one that the most vicious men in Hong Kong will stop at nothing to get their hands on.

As Andra and Max work to solve the puzzle of the language, they find themselves in a desperate race against time to escape the mysterious forces who all want the secret of the message—even as they surrender to the forces of an undeniable passion that brings them inexorably and irrevocably together.

Andra and Max love a challenge, but their latest mystery might get them killed.

When Max receives a package with a cryptic message, he knows Andra is the only person in the world who can help him crack the code. I found it a little odd that Max would fly all the way to Hong Kong knowing absolutely nothing about what he’s getting in to. However, it soon became clear that Max and Andra can’t resist the opportunity to decipher a message in an obscure language. Max’s main motivation seems to be his desire to see Andra in person, which again seemed like a bit of a stretch. While the contents of the package appear innocent, Andra and Max soon find themselves the target of a ruthless man who will do anything to stop them. Again, I found it odd that Max and Andra were willing to risk their lives for something they know very little about. However, the deeper they delve into the puzzle, the more intriguing it becomes. Like Max and Andra, I wanted to know the reason they received the package.

I must say that the relationship between Andra and Max never felt real to me. They have worked together before, but they have never met face to face. Ms. Kennie provides very little detail about their shared past. They are likable and realistic characters with the potential for good chemistry, but without more details concerning their connection, I just didn’t find their romance very genuine or compelling.

Ms. Kennie did an excellent job of pacing Legacy of Fear. The urgency of Andra and Max’s situation permeates every page of the story. Like Max and Andra, I was kept on my toes wondering where the next clue would lead and how the story would unfold. I can’t say much without spoiling the story, but I will say that I found the history of a secondary character particularly interesting.

Overall, I liked Legacy of Fear. It is a well paced book that can easily be read in one sitting. I recommend it to anyone looking for a good suspense.

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