Reviewer: Wendy Rucci
Title: Tall Dark Defender - Connected to Duty to Protect July'08
Author: Beth Cornelison
Publisher: Silhouette Romantic Suspense
Release Date: June 2009
Genre/Sub-genre: Romantic Suspense
Year/Setting: Present Day
Overall Rating: 4.0
Sexual Content Rating: Subtle
Language (Profanity/Slang) Content Rating: Mild
Violent Content Rating: Minimal
Beth's Website: www.bethcornelison.com
Tall Dark Defender by Beth Cornelison was an enjoyable book about an undercover investigator, Jonah, a man who was seeking to avenge the death of his friend Michael; and Annie, a single mother of two. While working on a case which involved Popís Diner, Jonah meets the lovely Annie Compton, a woman with some serious issues of her own.
Annie, a woman with two small children and a waitress at the diner, was trying to make a new life for herself and her family without her abusive ex-husband. One night Annieís boss, Peter Hardin, decided to send her out late at night to deliver a package. Jonah, suspicious of Hardin, follows Annie for her own safety and sees her get mugged.
Turns out that the person who mugs Annie stole the two hundred thousand dollars was carrying, so Annie was sure that Mr. Hardin was going to fire her. Getting fired turned out to be the least of Annieís worries. A few days later, when Annie shows up to work she finds Mr. Hardin murdered.
While the investigation into Peter Hardinís death goes on, Jonah convinces Annie to take some lessons in self defense, hoping they may help her get over the anger she feels for her ex-husband. He also believes her life is in danger and appoints himself her guardian. Jonah eventually has to let Annie know what he thinks her boss was involved in and how it relates to her job.
This book was very enjoyable. While it could have been easy for it to become another book where the man protecting woman premise becomes predictable, this one was different. While Annie tries to fight off dependence on Jonah, Jonah is more than willing to help Annie maintain her independence, while still helping to protect her. Although she tries to fight off her attraction to him, she is impressed with his connection to her children. Jonah, while having fallen in love with Annie fears he will never be able to give her everything she wants and needs in a husband and father. It isnít until Annieís life is in grave danger that Jonah realizes, he canít live without her.
This was an enjoyable, quick read which I highly recommend. While the premise was an often used one, the author managed to make this version of an old idea new and refreshing.
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