Bruised by Stacy Deanne

Bruised by Stacy Deanne
Publisher: Sugar and Spice Press
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Short Story (96 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Ginger

When Baltimore Homicide Detective Lisa Swanson and her partner Dee Quarter are called to investigate the murder of Ernest Juarez, Lisa meets wheelchair bound Jake Jenson, a man determined to find his best friend’s killer at all costs. Jake is instantly attracted to the standoffish Lisa yet can’t understand why Lisa keeps him at arm’s length.

What Jake feels is resistance toward him, is really Lisa’s distrust of men caused by a previous relationship centered on domestic violence. Lisa desperately searches for Ernest’s killer while fighting her feelings for Jake and trying to mend the pain from her past.

Jake just might be the man of Lisa’s dreams, but will she let shame and fear stand in the way of a new love?

Baltimore Homicide Detective Lisa Swanson is called to investigate a battered and bruised homicide victim, Ernest Juarez. His best friend, wheel chair bound Jake Jenson finds his battered body. Inappropriately at the scene of the crime, Jake blurts out that Detective Dee is beautiful.

I enjoyed several aspects of this book, for instance the murder suspense storyline is interesting and the book kept me in suspense. I wasn’t able to solve the murder until the author revealed the killer which made for a good story. The writing style had a nice flow. The author was not too wordy, she gave just enough information to keep me in suspense, not leaving me lost in a maze of too much information and too many characters as some authors tend to do.

What I didn’t like about the book was the character Jake. He was annoying, pushy, persistent and pretty much borderline stalking and obstructing justice. He shows up questioning those that knew his friend Ernest, he is at the police station wanting to follow along on the investigation. He shows up at Lisa’s house. He is also persistent in having a relationship with Lisa. Lisa tells Jake she isn’t ready to give her heart but he continues to pursue her. I am all for men standing behind what they want and showing their interest in a woman, but after a point it gets scary and he needs to move on because she isn’t interested.

With the title of the book being Bruised several of the relationships in the book relate to abuse. This gives the storyline many layers. Both Jake and Lisa are emotionally scarred from things that happened in their past. The story has good potential and the mystery portion was strong. I am interested in reading more about Detective Lisa and her history of abuse.

I would recommend Bruised, it is a quick murder mystery read, with two people trying to find their way to love again.

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