Jayne Ann Krentz has been a comfort read for me for years. While I’ve never hated any of her books, I haven’t enjoyed some of her more recent efforts as much as earlier books. I am happy to report that Running Hot, featuring a fantastic hero and heroine, is one of my favorite Krentz books in a long time.
The book gets off to a fast start as Grace Renquist kills her insane boss by using her psychic powers to save her own life. The action picks up with her hiding in Eclipse Bay, trying to avoid her former boss’s criminal associates while working under an assumed name as a librarian for the Arcane Society, a secret paranormal organization.
J & J Investigations, a firm associated with the Society, hires Grace to spot a psychic killer in Maui since she is an aura profiler who knows when people have committed any crimes. The firm also hires Luther Malone to be her bodyguard and there’s definite sizzle between Grace and Luther. Soon enough their supposedly simple task becomes complicated and deadly when the two discover that they’ve stumbled onto a convention of evil psychics.
The minute Luther spots Grace, he’s attracted – both at the psychic and physical level. The two have sex quite early in the book, but it worked for me. I didn’t doubt for a minute that there was more than sex involved.
Luther and Grace made the book for me. They’re mature, intelligent individuals and, while there’s a strong sexual attraction between them right from the first, there’s so much more. They truly respect and care for each other.
Luther is a different, and wonderful hero. He’s been seriously injured, and will always have to walk with a cane. He’s also been divorced twice in the last four years and is currently working as a bartender in a seedy dive frequented by burned-out psychics.
There’s a lot of clever dialogue, as well as many nice small touches. I enjoyed one scene in which Grace is reading a romantic suspense novel and Luther tries to convince her that real life crimes aren’t like they are in books. She mentions she’s peeked at the ending, and comments that she always reads the ending first, because, “Life is too short to waste on books that end badly.”
The plot held my interest, and at times had me guessing as to the identity of the good and bad guys. I appreciated that there were none of the information dumps about the Arcane Society that have riddled some of the other books in the series.
The only thing that kept this from being a DIK was a few too many scenes from various villains’ POV. That being said, there was no villain-sex, and some of the villains were quite interesting. I simply would have preferred more time with Luther and Grace.
If you’re like me, and don’t buy hardbacks, you might want to see if Running Hot is available at your local library. I borrowed it from my library, but know I’m going to want to spend more time with Luther and Grace so I’ve just downloaded a copy of my very own to my Kindle.