I’m familiar with Lowell’s historical romance titles, but this is the first romantic suspense I’ve read from her. While there was nothing terribly wrong with Death Echo, I’m sorry to say that I was bored out of my mind. It’s the only book I’ve been reading and it took me two months to finish! Needless to say, this is not one I’d recommend.
St. Kilda Consulting is a private company employing ex-military and government agency types for various missions that are as simple as tracking a boat for an insurance company or as dangerous as stopping some terrorists from blowing up a major U.S. city. Emma is performing the former task when a government bigwig hires St. Kilda to perform the latter task. The case involves a yacht that is thought to be carrying some type of dangerous contraband into the United States. Emma becomes involved because the yacht she’s been tracking, Blackbird, is identical to one that is purportedly dangerous. Her job is to determine what’s going on and then stop the major disaster that is about to occur.
Mac is the transport captain for Blackbird and his special ops training has prepared him for seeing through Emma’s dumb blonde routine when she comes sniffing around his boat. When he’s hired to transport the boat up the Canadian coastline for an undetermined distance, St. Kilda quickly hires him to join the op. Off they go on their mission, which is basically travelling on a boat until they make a really stupid move that propels them into action, which culminates in a saving-of-the-day.
Mac and Emma have immediate sparks between them and neither is shy about making them known. There’s no real romance here, just a mutual attraction, some mutual declarations of said attraction, and waiting for a chance to act upon that attraction. It’s incredibly basic and not at all scintillating.
It’s difficult to find things to say about this book. Much of what I’ve already summarized I actually had to check against the book, despite devoting several months to it. I even had to look up Emma’s name, which just goes to show how little of it stuck with me. I will say that it had one of the worst Prologues I’ve read. I had no idea what was going on. It was awkward and stilted and I had to read it three times to feel like I understood where things were going. And I was blown away, and not in a good way, by the abundance of nautical jargon. I really felt as if the author did a lot of research on boats and felt the need to share all of that with us readers. I couldn’t have cared less about all the intricate procedures and rituals that a captain has to do before setting off and I didn’t need the names for all the little mechanisms. I don’t know if it was trying to portray an abiding love for boats and the sea, but I was only encouraged to set the book down when I got to these passages.
Now, you might be wondering why the grade is not much lowered, but things weren’t awful. It was just very, very blah. I did heave a sigh of relief when I finally turned the last page, because this was certainly a hurdle for me. Others might not find Death Echo quite as dull as I and dragging things out only added to the bore factor for me, but I won’t be looking to Lowell for romantic suspense in the near future.