by Caridad Piñeiro, contemporary (2007)
Silhouette Romantic Suspense, $4.99, ISBN 978-0-373-27546-5
The cover of Caridad Piñeiro's Secret Agent Reunion cracks me up. It's a nice cover and the color scheme is most lovely, but the expression on the heroine's face is priceless. It is as if she has seen something horrible on the hero's head. "Oh no! Is that... is that... a receding hairline? Aaaah!"
The second book in the Mission: Impassioned series, this one sees the Lazlo Group operative Danielle Moore reuniting with an ex-boyfriend Mitchell Lama for a mission involving the rooting out of a traitor among their ranks. No, she didn't dump him because she felt like cringing every time she imagined all the "All hail the Dani Lama!" jokes that will inevitably arise once she marries Mitch. It's a long story involving a faked melodramatic death (his) and serious injuries (hers), "I thought you were dead, you son of a bitch!", and "Well, I thought you were a crabby liar!" scenarios best set aside for a time when you and I have plenty of time to talk about convoluted soap opera plots.
The bad news is... well, I don't really have much to complain here, except for the fact that the bad guys here are far less interesting and more one-dimensional than they were in the previous book, Marie Ferrarella's My Spy.
Fortunately, the main characters are interesting enough to make up for this. Dani and Mitch are two interesting characters indeed. Both have a somewhat melodramatic approaches to love that appeal to me. Even then, they behave credibly like conflicted agents here. No ridiculously stupid antics are forthcoming from these two, in other words. Ms Piñeiro is pretty wise in that she has created a pretty simple plot here that allows both the characters to shine as memorable characters with deep feelings and deeper substance while at the same time letting the story move at a pace that is just right. This story has a good balance between action and quiet moments. The sex scenes don't feel too much like moments of sex in silly places at sillier moments thrown in for the sake of completion - they fit the story pretty nicely.
Indeed, I feel that this story is a well-paced story with just the right amount of quiet moments and action-driven scenes. It's far from boring, the characters are memorable and they feel right together, and I close this book wondering why I haven't read anything by this author before.
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