In Her Sights
In Her Sights is the first in a new series by Katie Ruggle, a four-time Amazon Best Book of the Month recipient and winner of Amazon Best Book of the Year for Fan the Flames, book two in the Rocky Mountain Search & Rescue series. The Rocky Mountain Bounty Hunters focuses on the Pax sisters, five bounty-hunters who live in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, and this first book sets the story by introducing us to the eldest sister, her dog and her hunky ‘rival’. Get ready for some great characters you’re going to be eager to continue to read about in the next book.
Molly Pax will do anything to keep her family – consisting of her four sisters and her dog, Warrant – together. Her free-loading, sticky-fingered mother Jane? Not so much. Molly and her sisters have been running their household, supporting one another and turning their bail recovery business into a success, but their mother continually mooches off of them. Molly has had enough, and is on the verge of kicking her out when, in one night, she manages to steal Molly’s car and get picked up for felony theft. When Jane jumps bail after putting up the home Molly and her sisters share up for collateral with a bail bondsman, Molly is forced to take a job she’s been avoiding at all costs in order to keep a roof over their heads. And to make matters worse, every petty thief in town believes it’s open season at the Pax house, searching for what Jane is believed to have stolen. Molly needs help.
Enter John Carmondy, a fellow bounty-hunter whom Molly views as a rival. Six feet of nothing-but-trouble, John is the most cheerful, annoying and just-happens-to-be gorgeous frenemy ever, but when Molly is not so sure she and her sisters can get through this on her own, he’s there to take the job with her. With him helping her, she may just get out of this mess alive.
I’m sure Ruggle strategically chose Molly to start the series because she’s the eldest of the sisters, but I am grateful regardless of her chronological place in the Pax family. Molly is a smart, beautiful woman who doesn’t take snark or attitude from anyone. She’ll do anything for her sisters, and it’s her attitude towards them and their work that seems to be the glue that keeps them all together. Despite being a planner and the way she heads into any situation as well-prepared as possible, she can sometimes be a little reckless and stubborn, which makes following her all the more fun.
Molly is obviously somewhat clueless about why John is sticking around and so willing to help – insisting he’s some kind of frenemy or arch-rival – but she eventually catches on, giving us a great steamy scene just ahead of the novel’s top action. If you’re worried that you’ve picked up a book where the heroine picks up a sidekick who is going to save her at every turn, don’t be. Molly is a badass and trust me when I say that she’s the one in the middle of the action. But there’s plenty of nice moments where the big, strong sidekick comes into play, so if you’re here for that, you also won’t be disappointed.
As I sometimes find with these series thriller romances, the plot felt a little rushed at points. There’s a great set up, really good characterization, and then we are suddenly thrown into a couple of overly hurried scenes that lead us into the climax. Thanks to real life intrusions (bleh) when I reached the second half of the book, I’d have to put it down for normal day activities, and found myself feeling a little confused when I returned to it because it was harder to remember the more recent scenes that felt underdeveloped, compared to earlier more distinct ones. But I’m definitely here for the Pax sisters. Ruggle does an excellent job of introducing us to each of them just enough that if you’re like me, you’ll be excited to come back to their story and family drama with the next installment.
Despite some problems I had with the sequencing, the characters and the storyline that will undoubtedly continue in Ruggle’s new Rocky Mountain Bounty Hunters, In Her Sights is definitely worth the read.