This Chick Read: Year One (Chronicles of the One #1) by Nora Roberts

I’m going to admit, I bought this novel in 2018 and let it sit on my shelf. Then the pandemic hit and the last thing I wanted to do was read a novel about a virus that wipes out half of the population of the world. Time has moved on and I thought I might be able to separate the topic from the world I was living in.

This novel starts with the person who was the original spreader of the virus and seeing how it happened made me realize that this novel will be more fantasy than reality and as the book moved on and I read how the world divided between those who survived with change and those who survived still human I was able to even more immerse myself in this novel and the new world it was building. Following a few different story arc’s I came to care for these characters not caring if they were human or enhanced with inhuman traits caring more if they were good people or bad. A natural feeling when you are reading a novel that pits good versus evil.

Nora Roberts follows a formula she’s been very successful with throughout her career, especially when writing fantasy novels. She gives us several story arc’s, and in Year One I learn to love Max and Lana and then again Rachel and Jonah, as well as some other characters who help them survive and build new lives. What surprises me is that this plot is leading us to a hero and heroine who can lead them in the fight against evil, the children that they fight so hard to protect.

While there are elements of love throughout this story this novel is not a typical Nora Roberts romance novel. This is a three book series about a fight to come against good and evil. I am curious enough about where it’s headed to pick up the second book in the series but I will give one bit of criticism, I hope it starts off fast because Year One was a bit on the slow side and I like a quicker pace. ❤️❤️❤️❣️

Click this link to purchase!* Year One

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This Chick Read: Nightwork by Nora Roberts

When Harry Booth was twelve he stole for the first time. His mother had been diagnosed with cancer and the bills were piling up. He eventually graduated from picking pockets to identifying a target and specific item and breaking into a home to steal. He never took more than was needed, greed not being the reason he stole. When he was eighteen he went to college and fell in love with Miranda Emerson. He worries about giving too much of himself away but he should be worried about his past. Someone he once came in contact with wants his talents for his own use and he isn’t afraid to threaten those that Booth loves. Booth cuts ties with Miranda and runs to Europe trying to lose himself but he never forgets the girl he left behind.

Years later Booth runs into Miranda in the small town where he’s teaching high school, on hiatus from his “night work”. He’s still in hiding but finds that his love for her is still strong.

I can always rely on a romantic thriller by Nora Roberts to be an easy read, enjoyable, and have great characters. I’ll admit, when Nightwork started and I realized that the point of view was through Booth’s eyes, I was hesitant about it, but despite his occupation, Booth was incredibly easy to like. I think it’s because he was a thief with a code of honor. He researched what to steal and only took that item, never falling prey to greediness. It also helped to have a serious bad guy in LaPorte as a comparison. Booth’s escapades were the lesser evil for sure! I liked that we met Miranda pretty far into Booth’s story. I really needed to know him for the obvious reason that he is a thief, but also because he was male. I don’t read too many novels with a male protagonist, which I’ll admit is totally happenstance and kind of weird. Once Miranda entered the story, I really liked him, felt for his circumstances and wanted to see him settle down- which of course didn’t happen. They were both super smart and perfect for each other, more as adults than teenagers.

I really liked the Ocean’s 11 aspects of this book. This is a novel about good vs. evil and I’ll pick good every time. I’ll admit, this good was a bit tarnished but pairing Booth with Miranda gave them a luster that might have been absent if it were only Booth trying to overcome the odds against LaPorte. There were some other great characters in this novel, Booth’s aunt Mags was a gypsy-ish new-ager was a fun addition and his Creole friends added additional color. Friendships are something else that Nora Robert does well and I’m always eager to visit with a new cast of characters.

If you love heist novels with a bit of romance I think you’ll really enjoy Nightwork. There’s some drama, romance, and mystery all rolled into one adventurous package. It was a great book to read on my beach vacation- I read it all in one day! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* Nightwork

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This Chick Read: The Becoming (The Dragon Heart Legacy #2) by Nora Roberts

At the end of the previous novel The Awakening, Breen had left her legacy in Talamh to go back home to the US to see her friends and tidy up the life she’ll be leaving behind when she returns. She knows that despite the growth of her powers she still needs training and can’t remain in the US too long while her evil Grandfather is trying to break through to Talamh to conquer and rule. Despite her saying she would return Keegan, the man who leads Talamh, and her lover, can’t take the chance that she won’t return and comes to take her back, and accidentally transfers her best friend Marco as well. Now she and Marco are in Talamh, where fairies, dragons, and mermaids reside to try to help save Talamh.

The uber talented Nora Roberts doesn’t always hit a home run when she writes fantasy novels and The Becoming, for me, follows that theme. I love the world she has created. Talamh is one of those places we’d all like to visit, a veritable fantasy land filled with gorgeous creatures both animal and human. Despite our heroine’s love for her family in this world I just don’t feel a connection between she and Keegan who is her love interest. He seems to have a switch that turns on and off. He wants her, he doesn’t have time for her, he is a taskmaster, and then he is a lover. It may just be that if I were Breen I would’ve looked elsewhere for a partner. Yes, Keegan is their leader, but leading is not always the best qualification for love.

I was so happy that Marco’s story arc expanded. He is so much fun and his own love story gave me what I needed. Romance! It also helps that he is just so likable and seeing Talamh through his eyes is so much fun.

I am looking forward to the third novel in this series because I want to see how the author will tie everything up. Keegan needs to show a little emotion for Breen. How will they end their war with her grandfather? Will Marco and his lover find happiness? There are a lot of pieces that need resolving and Ms. Roberts is very good at capturing all of those loose ends into a fancy bow.

❤️❤️❤️❣️

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved.

Click this link to purchase!* The Becoming: The Dragon Heart Legacy, Book 2 (The Dragon Heart Legacy, 2)

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This Chick Read: Under Currents by Nora Roberts

Zane and his little sister grow up privileged in a small town. To everyone outside the doors to their house it looks like they have the perfect life. Socialite mom and popular doctor dad. No one would guess at the abuse he and his sister were going through. After one night where that abuse was taken too far Zane and his little sister fight back. With the help of their aunt, a neighbor, and sheriff they can finally have their lives back and the childhood they deserve. Grown up Zane returns to their small town as a lawyer protecting the rights of the underprivileged. Charmed by his small town he may even open up his heart to love.

Under Currents showed up in my Little Library last year and I had been holding onto it until I had a long vacation. Knowing that a good Nora Roberts book would only enhance that feeling of being away from all stresses. Little did I know that this romantic thriller would have me riveted and on the edge of my seat for the entire book! I can honestly say she outdid herself with this story.

This novel takes place during Zane’s childhood and then again when he is an adult. The abuse his parents handed out to he and his sister was truly horrid and I was glad there was a true villain for me to root against. The grown up Zane is finally able to enjoy his family and his life in his hometown. When Darby, a landscape artist extraordinaire moves into town he is immediately hooked. She is the yin to his yang. Of course, Darby is also running from her past. The way their two pasts collide is interesting and thrilling. Their love story gets on a roller coaster and the excitement never subsides!

I guess you can say that I enjoyed this Nora Roberts book alot. Under Currents is the perfect novel to take you away from your own messy life but beware! It enmeshes you into the characters messy lives. It’s no vacation reading this novel but it is the perfect novel to take on your vacation. This is my first 5 star Nora Roberts novel in quite awhile and I highly recommend you read it. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this novel! Under Currents: A Novel

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This Chick Read: Legacy by Nora Roberts

Adrian Rizzo has been famous since she was a teen. Following in her famous mother’s footsteps by launching her own fitness brand when she was sixteen. Years later that business is booming. She is living in the town her mother grew up in and in the home her grandparents built. Although her life appears perfect on the surface there is a threat lying just beneath the surface. Every February she has gotten a threatening poem in the mail, something that comes with the territory of being famous, but after nearly being killed by her father when she was a child Adrian takes all precautions. Will this threat become a reality?

Nora Roberts always delivers on her romantic suspense novels and Legacy did not alter the path of success. She provided the reader with a good story, likable characters, and an interesting mystery. So why was I left feeling like it could have been so much better?

Legacy was easy to read and I enjoyed the story. In my opinion the relationships between Adrian and her mom and then again Adrian and Raylan lacked emotional depth. The first on purpose, Adrian and Lina were not supposed to be close. After the altercation with her father Lina dumped Adrian off with her grandparents and the contrasting warmth they displayed showed just how much their daughter lacked that maternal warmth. How I felt about the sub-plot and subsequent love story with Raylan might be my own peccadillo. I really liked him with his first wife and their love was so deep. Despite my liking Adrian, it was hard for me to see him fall for her when his circumstances had changed. As a side note his kids and dog were so lovable and funny and really rounded out Raylan’s story.

Sometimes when you figure out the whodunnit half way through a novel, and the sub plots are good but not great, you are just reading to reach the final page and not really to feel every emotion your main character will feel. That is was happened with me in this novel. I liked it, but I’ve read so many better books by this author that I was disappointed at the same time. These mixed feelings are why I only gave this book a 3.5 rating. ❤️❤️❤️❣️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase!* Legacy: A Novel

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a few cents.

This Chick Read: Hideaway by Nora Roberts

Caitlyn Sullivan comes from a long line of Hollywood royalty. When her grandfather dies when she’s a small girl her family gets together to celebrate his life and Cate is kidnapped and held for ransom. Managing to escape Cate finds her way to the Cooper farm where a young boy, Dillon Cooper finds Cate hiding out in his kitchen. Whisked away to Ireland to be brought up outside the limelight, Cate comes back to the US to try her hand at the family business and to find herself. What she ends up finding is harassment and danger that has followed her throughout her life. Moving back to the town where the kidnapping took place Cate and Dillon find each other again and strike up a friendship that soon turns to something more.

When you pick up a Nora Roberts novel it’s expected that the story will take you away and Hideaway definitely lived up to my expectations. Caitlyn was a wonderful heroine. Despite living her life with threats hanging over her hear the only think she fears is to let someone love her because she’s afraid for their lives. She is always willing to step up and fight for herself. Her family, with the exception of her mother, was a dream family. Sure, they were all famous actors, but wow we could all hope to have such support and love in our lives. I also liked how Dillon and Cait were on the peripheral of each others lives up until they were adults. They knew each other, had that fearful experience from their childhood in common, and a solid friendship before they took it to another level. It was a really nice progression of their relationship.

Hideaway is not just a romance. It’s the story of Cate’s life and the different aspects to her learning who she is and what she wants her journey to be about. The story has four parts. Her childhood, her young acting career, her life in NY and exploring what she wants for the future, and her life as an adult with a career once she lives in northern California. Danger exists in each of these moments or times of her life so the escalation when she hits California doesn’t come out of left field. We know who the culprit is but not how they will strike again which keeps the reader on the edge of their seat, not able to relax into the romantic aspect of the story.

If you are a fan of romantic suspense, and Nora Roberts, Hideaway is right up your alley. I thought it was the perfect escapism novel. The story was far away from my pedantic life yet somehow I could envision myself in Cate’s shoes. It definitely did a great job of giving me an adrenaline rush at the end! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!*Hideaway: A Novel

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*Amazon Associate- If you should purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: The Awakening (The Dragon Heart Legacy #1) by Nora Roberts

Breen Kelly’s father left she and her mom when she was a little girl, but she remembers the fanciful stories he told about a land filled with magic. When she discovers her mother has been hiding an account in her name filled with millions of dollars she quits the job she hates, unburies herself from her student loans and travels to Ireland, hoping to find the father who left her behind. Instead, she finds a land filled with magic, and a home that she’d always dreamed of having.

Nora Roberts never lets me down. She is consistent, and even when writing fantasy, I enjoy the yarns she spins. The Awakening was no different. In a world where I’m now having difficulty concentrating on a story, I was so happy to be able to immerse myself and step into a land just as Breen steps into her new world.

Let’s talk about these characters. Breen has been overwhelmed by her mother, told she wasn’t good enough, and led to believe that she couldn’t have the things she dreamed of having. Oh, I hate reading about those kinds of mothers! When Breen went off to Ireland she developed a confidence that was fun to read. I enjoyed seeing her gain her strength and a spark of sassiness. Her best friend Marco was a really fun character. He was her strength when she was weak, but became her biggest champion as she found her voice. I’m hoping he is a bigger part of the second novel in the series. He deserves his own story! Keegan, is the leader (I’m not going to try to say the Gaelic or Fey term that Ms. Roberts used and I stupidly didn’t write it down) of the Fey in Talamh (pronounced Tala). He was arrogant and well kind of not nice. I wondered when he would turn into the hero and felt kind of let down by how he was portrayed. His is another character I hope we see flesh out in a more positive manner in the second novel. Especially since he is Breen’s love interest.

I would call this series romantic fantasy, but only in the sense that Ireland, the Fey, Elves, etc. are romantic to read about. I felt a little bit let down in the romance department, but if I threw out any notion that this was supposed to be a romance I would say I enjoyed this fantasy novel. So that is the reason why I’m giving this novel a 4.0 rating. I wasn’t really sure if there was supposed to be a romance between our two main characters. I mean the kind of romance that ends in a happily ever after instead of uncertainty. This novel definitely ended in a cliffhanger, so beware the abrupt ending! I rather liked it because it led me in an unexpected direction, but if cliffhangers are your thing, I thought I’d give the warning. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase! The Awakening: The Dragon Heart Legacy, Book 1 (The Dragon Heart Legacy, 1)

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This Chick Read: Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts

Nora Roberts novel Shelter in Place deals with a subject that’s uncomfortable to read about, which is probably why I hadn’t picked it up since it’s release in 2018.

It was a normal evening in Portland, Maine. People shopping, eating, and catching a movie at their local mall when a few gunmen entered and created carnage like this town had never seen and the people who survived would never be the same. This story centers around Simone Knox and Reed Quartermaine two people who hadn’t known each other before this horrific event. Reed became a cop and quickly rose through the ranks to investigator when a Sheriff’s position became available on an island off the coast of Maine. An island where Simone Knox was living and creating her art. When a killer sets their sights on the survivors of the shooting Reed is ready to protect his island and the woman he’s grown to love.

In my opinion, Nora Roberts handled the tough subject of a mass shooting very well. The tense situation of the event itself was amped up not through gory details but through the emotions of the people whose eyes the reader was seeing through. A situation that we all hope to never be in and believe me, I read those scenes quickly because the thought of that was just too real. When the story advances into current time our main characters are adults, living their lives but not without problems from their past. Reed can’t let the past drop, and Simone is not able to forget all of the people who died. This is where the story really picks up. Really!

As with most Nora Roberts romantic suspense novels the relationship takes center stage and is heightened by the mystery. In Shelter in Place I almost feel the reverse. The mystery takes center stage and Simone and Reed’s relationship is secondary. Normally this would bother me, but this tale was pretty riveting from page 1 and the subject matter really emotional, I didn’t even notice. However, I did like our two main characters and unsurprisingly rooted for them to survive until the end.

If you are looking for a good romantic suspense novel and the subject matter of a mass shooting is not a deterrent, I’d pick up Shelter in Place. I read it while on vacation and found it to be the perfect mix of mystery and romance and a really wild emotional ride. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* Shelter in Place

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Birthright by Nora Roberts

A couple years ago I took a trip with my sister to Boonsboro, Maryland and stayed at Nora Roberts hotel Inn Boonsboro. It was a girls trip and we explored the area, including the Antietam Battlefield. On that trip my sister mentioned this book as one of her favorites that Nora Roberts had written. It’s an older book, published in 2003 and takes place in Woodsboro, a town very close to Boonsboro. When we got back home she pulled it off her shelf and gave it to me to read. I set it on my own bookshelf and then promptly forgot about it until a couple of weeks ago when I picked it up and just started reading. It totally took me back to that area of the country. A trip that I may not be able to take again any time soon, but loved revisiting in this novel.

Callie Dunbrook gets called in to investigate some bones that were discovered on a construction site. Those bones turn out to be 5000 years old and her team, including her ex-husband Jake start digging and cataloging. Their dig is interrupted by two things. A local woman declares Callie her long lost daughter, stolen from her when she was a baby, and someone is murdered on the site. With the help of her ex, who does not want to be an ex anymore, they investigate both mysteries….and more people end up dying.

That’s kind of a short synopsis for a rather long and intricate novel but I really don’t want to get too far into the plot and give anything away. Let’s talk about the main characters. Callie is a really interesting heroine, she’s direct, honest, and analytical when she finds out the woman’s tale about her being a long lost daughter is true. On the outside she remains a little unemotional, but through her investigation, you can see how hard she’s trying to do right by these people, even if she can never have the same feelings for them as they do for her. You’ve got to admire that. I really liked how Jake supported her through all of this and seemed determined to not disappoint her a second time. Despite her trying to keep him at a distance he doesn’t give up and it’s that persistent caring that makes her see how different he is from a year ago. Their relationship seemed very real despite the mysterious things going on around them. I totally bought into it.

What I liked best about this novel were the moments of history that Nora Roberts wrote into this story. You could tell she knew this area really well and those little details really added depth to a format that she’s written a thousand times. Despite this novel being written 17 years ago it really wasn’t dated at all. There was zero mention of technology or anything else to point out how long ago it was written, so if you haven’t read this one lately I’d recommend that you pick it up again to enjoy. It’s a great story, the mystery was well done, and the romance had heat and emotion. What more could you possibly want?

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* Birthright

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you should purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Secrets in Death (In Death #45) by J. D. Robb

Forty-Five books into the In Death series and I am again surprised at J. D. Robb’s (or Nora Roberts) talent to write a mystery that is unique.  Secrets in Death starts off running as a gossip columnist is murdered in a trendy bar and literally drops dead in Eve’s arms. Lieutenant Eve Dallas doesn’t like trendy bars or restaurants, even if her billionaire husband Roarke happens to own them. A death makes the place so much more interesting!

Once again Eve and her team dive deep into this murder, developing different scenario’s while trying to find the killer. What makes this novel unique is that this victim is well known and while investigating, they find out some of her deep dark secrets that strike a little too close to home.

This novel started off fast because of the immediate death but it slowed down tremendously during the investigation. I do love all of the characters in these novels, but I got the feeling #45 was just a place holder, a book that was required to be written because the author was under contract. It lacked some of the camaraderie and fun dialog that previous In Death novels provided. I’m ready for a little more growth from Eve than I have gotten in the last couple of novels. A new step in the relationship? Kill off one of her team? Something! This wasn’t a bad book, but when you have 44 others to compare it to, it came up short for me.

❤️❤️❤️❣️

Secrets in Death Click on this link to purchase! Secrets in Death: An Eve Dallas Novel (In Death, Book 45) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved