Even if I was able to overlook Shanna’s stupidity, (which I’m not) I’d still be confronted with Jace’s behavior, which didn’t strike me as particularly realistic, either. I mean, here’s a woman you don’t know, claiming innocence while trying to steal your car, and the police tell you she’s a murderer. What’s your reaction? Why, sneak her out of town, of course! Hike up a mountain and fight off vicious guard dogs for her, obvs. Duh. (I’m side-eyeing Jace pretty hard at this point in the story)
Then to find out later that he’s an ex-cop with a prison record? That makes his actions all the more ridiculous. He should’ve avoided Shanna like I avoid doing squats and eating cauliflower. (Just to be clear: I hate everything about cauliflower and was once almost crippled for a week from doing squats, so that’ll never happen again.)
But outside of his completely unrealistic motivation for helping Shanna, Jace wasn’t a terrible hero. He was strong and capable and kind-hearted, which kind of makes me wish I could fix him up with a heroine from another novel, because he can definitely do better than this one.
So, at the end of the day, Jace earns this book 1 star, and I award the other star because while I hated the heroine, the story was technically well-written.
Full disclosure: We received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
Contributes on almost every front. Ugh. Just...ugh.
Other reading suggestions
I really enjoyed Hide From Evil, by Jami Alden, which featured a similar hot-guy-protects-heroine-on-the-run storyline.