Some Kind of Magic
An artist recovering from a bad relationship meets a mysterious hero with a past. Throw in an Idaho winter, an isolated cabin with a sauna, and you have a volatile yet fun mix. Oh, yeah – don’t forget the voodoo doll and the handcuffs.
Claire Maxfield’s 30th birthday begins quietly enough. She celebrates by drinking a couple of beers with her friend, Libby, who gives her the voodoo doll and handcuffs. Then, Claire makes her wish. . . for some excitement. Before she knows it, Claire gets more excitement than she wants. Just as she’s leaving the bar, a man kidnaps her at gun point and forces her to drive to her cabin.
They reach the cabin, but the kidnapper, Dylan, is injured, and Claire has to take care of him. Although much of this book takes place in Claire’s cabin (making it a prime Cabin Romance), it never seems claustrophobic. Because she’s an artist, Claire prefers to deal with people face to face, so the cabin doesn’t even have a phone. The isolation gives the main characters a greater chance to interact with each other. It isn’t until Claire grows as a person that the cabin becomes less important to her. After some false starts, Dylan and Claire become lovers. The love scenes are quite imaginative. They take place in bed, in the sauna, and in the snow. At one point, even the handcuffs come in handy again. But these scenes are more than just hot sex. They explore the characters’ emotions as well.
Both Dylan and Claire are “damaged” people, and this makes them easier to believe in than the perfect characters found in many romance novels. Claire is still recovering from her last relationship. She thinks she’s unattractive and believes her paintings are inferior. Dylan also wrestles with his past, but he tries to do the right thing. They can’t commit to each other right away, and there are a few separations between them. Some readers might become impatient with the characters while they work through their emotions.
The friendship between Claire and Libby is refreshing. The eccentric Libby is more than just a confidant. She is slowly making her home into a compound. Like the cabin, she could be taken as a symbol of isolation. Yet even Libby finds someone in her life. The secondary romance involving Libby was enjoyable, but moved too quickly. Libby was such a great character that I wish she had appeared in more scenes.
When a novel is set in Idaho during the winter, you know the weather will play an important part in the plot. There is snow everywhere, and it affects Claire’s wardrobe. (The next time someone gripes that romances are full of women wearing glamorous outfits, give them a copy of this book!) Yet Dylan can still see the woman behind the layers of warm clothing. He even starts to think of those outfits as sexy. Now that’s a hero!
Don’t expect typical “woman in jeopardy” fare. Though Dylan kidnaps Claire at gun point, this book never follows the usual path. Dylan isn’t who you think he is. His secret is surprising and yet cleverly planted in the text. Don’t start this book late at night, because you’ll find yourself staying up late to find out what happens next. Theresa Weir’s punchy writing style drags you in and never lets you go.