Friday, 13 February 2015

Review: Mean Streak by Sandra Brown

Mean Streak by Sandra Brown

Publication: August 19th, 2014
Genre: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Stars: 4 ****

The Blurb

Dr. Emory Charbonneau, a pediatrician and marathon runner, disappears on a mountain road in North Carolina. By the time her husband Jeff, miffed over a recent argument, reports her missing, the trail has grown cold. Literally. Fog and ice encapsulate the mountainous wilderness and paralyze the search for her.

While police suspect Jeff of “instant divorce,” Emory, suffering from an unexplained head injury, regains consciousness and finds herself the captive of a man whose violent past is so dark that he won’t even tell her his name. She’s determined to escape him, and willing to take any risks necessary to survive.
Unexpectedly, however, the two have a dangerous encounter with people who adhere to a code of justice all their own. At the center of the dispute is a desperate young woman whom Emory can’t turn her back on, even if it means breaking the law.

As her husband’s deception is revealed, and the FBI closes in on her captor, Emory begins to wonder if the man with no name is, in fact, her rescuer.

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My Thoughts

I've read Sandra Brown books before & in turns of romantic suspense novels she is up there with the best so I was really pleased to be part of the Mean Streak Blog Tour being run by Xpresso Book Tours.

As with all suspense novels, Mean Streak is quite difficult to review without giving too much of the plot away so I am going to try & keep it fairly short. Dr Emory Charbonneau is a well respected paediatrician in her small town with her own practice. She is an heiress due to her parents dying when she was in her teens but this doesn't stop her working hard at her practice or the efforts she puts into raising money for charity. She is a very motivated and driven woman and other than her work she uses that drive in her marathon running.

At the start of this book we see Emory heading out to the mountains of North Carolina for a solo marathon training run having just had yet another disagreement with her husband Jeff. The arguments seem to be more frequent & quite honestly their marriage is in rapid decline. Emory can't even remember the last time they slept together. Whilst out on her run Emory is knocked unconscious & discovered by a passing stranger. With the bad weather closing in the stranger who is of course handsome takes Emory back to his cabin in the woods.

Emory is eventually reported by her husband Jeff after a couple of days & it is his delay on raising the alarm that makes him suspect numero uno. However he has an alibi for when Emory went missing, an alibi that comes in the form of his mistress. So begins a massive search for Emory with the local investigators Knight & Grange determined to track down the person responsible. Throw in an FBI agent hot on the trail of our handsome stranger & you have one hell of plot.

Our mysterious stranger is a loner who lives out in the woods. He is a quiet & brooding sort who reveals nothing about himself to Emory not even his name. He looks after Emory though putting her needs first as she recovers from her blow to the head. There is great tension between Emory & the stranger that is both sexual & dangerous. She is deeply drawn to him but knows that he must have done something truly awful to be hiding the way he is. When we find out what he has done it is one heck of a surprise & opens the storyline right up.

The book has lots of little sub-plots that Sandra Brown pulls masterly together & it is these that build the tension & the suspense throughout the novel as we hurtle towards the heated conclusion. There are enough red herrings littered throughout the story for the ultimate OMG moment when the culprit responsible for leaving Emory for dead is revealed.

The storyline starts out slow but picks up pace quite quickly and the wonderful secondary characters of Agent Jack Connell, Knight & Grange and the hillbilly brothers Will & Norman just had to the story & help keep the reader engaged. With a few touches of humour, a handsome hero and a well plotted tale I don't hesitate to recommend this book. Mean Streak kept me totally hooked and was a real page turner that kept me up way past my bedtime.

About The Author

Sandra Brown is the author of more than sixty New York Times bestsellers, including DEADLINE(2013), LOW PRESSURE (2012), LETHAL (2011), TOUGH CUSTOMER (2010), SMASH CUT (2009), SMOKE SCREEN (2008), PLAY DIRTY (2007), RICOCHET (2006), CHILL FACTOR (2005), WHITE HOT (2004), & HELLO, DARKNESS (2003).

Brown began her writing career in 1981 and since then has published over seventy novels, bringing the number of copies of her books in print worldwide to upwards of eighty million. Her work has been translated into over thirty languages.

A lifelong Texan, Sandra Brown was born in Waco, grew up in Fort Worth and attended Texas Christian University, majoring in English. Before embarking on her writing career, she worked as a model at the Dallas Apparel Mart, and in television, including weathercasting for WFAA-TV in Dallas, and feature reporting on the nationally syndicated program “PM Magazine.”

In 2009 Brown detoured from her thrillers to write, Rainwater, a much acclaimed, powerfully moving story about honor and sacrifice during the Great Depression.

Brown recently was given an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Texas Christian University. She was named Thriller Master for 2008, the top award given by the International Thriller Writer’s Association. Other awards and commendations include the 2007 Texas Medal of Arts Award for Literature and the Romance Writers of America’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

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Tour-wide giveaway (US and Canada)

  • 5 winners will each get a signed personalized copy of MEAN STREAK in Trade PB and swag (image attached) + a dozen buttercream cookies from Cheryl's.

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1 comment:

  1. This sounds like such a fun read and I love how much it has to offer with the great characters and all the sub plots that give even more substance to the book (sometimes too many sub plots just becomes messy). Wonderful review, Sam! :)