Author: Nora Roberts
Release date: 14th April 2011
Genre: Romantic Suspense / Crime / Romance
Target audience: Adult (Strong language and explicit sexual scenes)
UK Publisher: Piatkus
Summary from Amazon:
Rowan Tripp is addicted to danger. She's been fighting the annual forest fires in the rugged Montana mountains since she was eighteen years old. She can read a wildfire like no one else - and is prepared to put her life on the line again and again to save others. But now she is mourning the death of her good friend and jump partner, Jim - and haunted by the fact that she might have been able to save him. More pressing is the fact that the new season's recruits to the 'smoke-jumping' team need to be trained. Rowan has a strict rule: NEVER get romantically involved with anyone she works with. But the moment she meets Gull Curry that rule is severely tested. And when it becomes clear that someone does blame Rowan for Jim's death, and is determined to get revenge, Rowan finds that she needs Gull's help and support more than ever ...
I am going through a phase. I have no idea what has brought it on but the only author I feel like reading is Nora Roberts. Now obviously, I am a book blogger so I have to review books. Specifically, young adult or children’s fiction. I can’t just indulge the craving to read more of this romantic suspense stuff. Okay, so I let myself off the hook once I’d read a couple of review books and started Chasing Fire. It is a standalone novel and in the same vein as Black Hills, it is a mash up of crime and romance. It turns out I like this combo very much. Which shouldn’t realise surprise me because a) I love cop shows and b) I am a hopeless romantic who believes in fairytales. If you fit this description, read on!
So Chasing Fire is set in the hills of Montana. The central characters are Rowan Tripp and Gulliver Curry. Rowan is a bit rough around the edges, she is as feisty as they come and passionate about her work battling forest fires. Gulliver is a romantic, wordy sort who has very fast feet. He is a rookie this year and is about to send Rowan’s world off kilter. Rowan is a very guarded character. She doesn’t get romantically attached to anyone. She is more your use them and lose them kind of girl. Gulliver’s job is to melt her armour and show her what true love is. So that is the romance of this story. Can the boy melt the girl’s heart and teach her to trust?
Then, there is the crime aspect. At the beginning of the story Rowan is reliving the nightmare of the previous season. Her jump partner died in an accident and she hasn’t been able to fully accept what has happened. This is true of all the people who work on the base. Perhaps I need to explain that in the course of fighting fires, the Zulies jump out of planes into the path of the fire and try to stop it spreading. They chop trees down, hose the fire, and battle for hours without rest. Heroic stuff!
Sometimes I didn’t have a clue what was going on with the fires. Roberts uses a fair bit of fire specific lingo and it was tough to follow. It wasn’t incomprehensible but it was challenging. In fact, it didn’t matter to me that I didn’t understand it all because I was more interested in character and her characterisation is brilliant. Also she is great at misleading the reader. One minute you think one character is responsible for the odd things that are happening at the base and the next you think it’s someone else. I did start to suspect the right character towards the end but I was never 100% sure.
This was another great read from Nora Roberts. It took me a while to get through it. Over a week which is unusual for me but it was because I wasn’t rushing. I just wanted to enjoy it and I really did. Now if only I didn’t have all those blog tours coming up, which I need to review books for, I could crack on with The Search which is going to be my next foray into the world of Romantic Suspense.