It's Hotter in Hawaii
It’s Hotter in Hawaii reads more like romantic suspense than contemporary romance. I found the plot to be interesting, but the character and relationship development are too weak for a recommendation.
Cassie Montgomery’s half-brother Dan was a pilot who recently died in a helicopter crash. She believes that he was murdered, but the local police think it was an accident. While she’s ostensibly cleaning out Dan’s house, Cassie is actually looking for evidence to prove her case. What she didn’t expect, was to catch a hot man breaking into the house.
Cal Wilson was in the Air Force with Dan, but hadn’t heard from him in years. Cal is out of the military now, but came to Hawaii after he got a message that Dan needed his help. Cal is attracted to Cassie from the first, despite the fact that she’s holding a gun on him. Within minutes, Cal gets the gun from Cassie, only to have someone else shoot at them both.
Cal teams up with a reluctant Cassie to investigate Dan’s death. He attempts to fight his attraction to her – after all, she’s Dan’s baby sister. Cal is also keeping secrets about Dan, secrets he doesn’t want Cassie to know. While Cassie typecasts Cal as a player “flyboy,” she is also attracted to him and spends a great deal of time admiring his assets.
I never felt that I got to know Cassie at all, beyond the fact that she’s a graphic designer, is grieving for her brother, and thinks that Cal is hot, but doesn’t like him. She talks tough, as if she’s a real kick-ass heroine. However, there doesn’t seem to be anything there to back it up. Cassie also has several has several TSTL moments, with one in particular toward the end of the book putting her beyond saving from my point of view.
I enjoy sarcastic, smart-ass dialog, so initially liked that between Cassie and Cal. But other than some hot sex, the sarcastic interchanges are pretty much all the two seemed to share. I also didn’t buy into a HEA for the couple. Admittedly, over the course of a few days, they had a lot of hot sex. But I felt that Cassie fell in love with Cal way too fast, before the two ever really knew much about each other.
I enjoy romances in different settings and feel that the author gave a good sense of place to the island of Kauai, making use of a number of different locations and features of the island. The mysteries involved in Dan’s death also kept me guessing. However, there was just too little character development for me to recommend the book.