Midnight Legacy
by Dee Tenorio, contemporary (2007)
Samhain Publishing, $5.50, ISBN 1-59998-551-9


Midnight Legacy revolves around the Remington sister finding love with... oh, that's right. If you have read the previous two books of Dee Tenorio's Midnight series, you may recall that the sister Marissa died about twenty years ago. Well, I am talking about the other sister here.

Tara Sellers has no idea that she is Legacy, the illegitimate child that resulted from the late Harper Remington's not-so-secret-now affair. The Remingtons have to find the appropriately-named Legacy because when she turns 30 - which will be in a few months time - she has to claim her inheritance or everything will go towards designated charities. Because Jordan Remington, our friendly matriarch, wants to keep living in style, she's determined to make sure that Legacy becomes a happy member of the clan.

Tara is a freelance photographer chasing after celebrities and politicians in compromising situations for tabloids. She is hoping that she will get hired by a more respectable magazine, but little does she know that her job interview - or more specifically, the medical tests she has to undergo during the interview - is a means for Dr Perry Chase to determine whether she's Legacy. Once it is confirmed that she's who she is, all Perry has to do is to get her to meet the family, where she will sign the necessary papers and sell to her new family whatever Jordan wants for herself (the house, for one) before parting ways a much richer woman that she was before. It's really that simple. Right?

Midnight Legacy has a kind of melodramatic Danielle Steele vibe to it when it comes to the whole little poor lost heiress thing. The fact that every character here has a name straight out of a soap opera doesn't improve matters. However, I find the characters here more enjoyable to read about compared to the characters in the previous two books in the series. Tara has a melodramatically sad past straight out of a soap opera or Sweet Valley High book (her adopted parents died, the house burned down, she was kidnapped, et cetera) but she doesn't play the martyr or throw pity parties here. Perry could have been better developed as a character but he's a pretty okay fellow who still reminds me too much of a good guy in a soap opera.

The relationship between those two is a little on the not-so-exciting side since it is fighting for space in this story with plenty of the Carringtons-style family angst and drama as well as with a subplot involving someone out to get Tara. That suspense subplot is the weakest thing about this story since it is inserted just to give the story a halfway "exciting" denouement that doesn't involve Remingtons snarling at each other.

There are many things going on in this story and I feel that perhaps if this story is longer Ms Tenorio would have had the opportunity to develop her characters into something a little bit more than recognizable soap opera stereotypes.

That's not to say that this book is bad. In fact, I feel that this is easily the best book in the series. Midnight Legacy however feels rather underdeveloped in many ways. It's a decent read, but it could have been better.

Rating: 81


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