The Last Dance
As last dances go, this one was rather uninspiring. The last of the Mac’s Angel series and also one of the last Loveswept titles, it is too bad this last dance couldn’t have been just a little more sizzling.
Lincoln “Mac” McAllister and Sterling Lindsey have known each other for years but only through e-mail and phone conversations. Mac is the head of Angel International, a munificent organization which specializes in helping those in need. Sterling works as an assistant to Connor Preston, one of Mac’s close friends and associates. Mac has hidden away in his New Mexico mountain sanctuary, Shangri-La, for years and Sterling has made her job with Connor her life. She fears she might never have a normal life. Ten years earlier, Sterling interrupted a robbery and was shot and seriously injured. She relies on a wheelchair as her main mode of transportation because, with an inoperable bullet lodged near her spine, walking long distances is impossible for her. Mac and Sterling finally meet face-to-face at the airport when Sterling recognizes the assailant from the robbery gone awry getting off of a plane. Mac arrives as her very own angel of mercy and spirits her away on his private jet to his fortress-like mountain hideaway which appears to rival the best James Bond had to offer.
Mac is reminiscent of the hard-bitten, macho, wealthier-than-Croseus romance heroes of yore. His seduction techniques, however, could use a bit of work and he appears, unintentionally I am sure, to have a pantyhose fetish. As he is disrobing Sterling and after he has removed her pantyhose, he caresses them (the pantyhose) and compares them to moonlight – weird! This is after he utters one of the most pathetically obvious lines ever to grace the pages of a romance. He says to Sterling, “And you intend to sleep in your clothes? I don’t think so. That dress, it’s so clingy. It’s bound to be uncomfortable, not to mention those stockings.” Sterling doesn’t seem to mind, however, and a romance is born.
Sterling leans a bit toward the too-good-to-be-true type of heroine. She is the cliched romance heroine who not only rescues the rich, reclusive hero from himself but also manages to charm his entire household staff and, while she is at it, wins over Mac’s emotionally withdrawn daughter. The only thing she cannot do, it would seem, is dress properly. She is definitely no fashion plate. Love is blind and, in this case, it is truly a blessing because some of the outfits Sterling is described as wearing sound truly atrocious.
The ever-present threat of danger posed by the man who shot Sterling is believable, palatable even, if you enjoy a lot of high-tech, commando stuff. It is not enough, however, to keep the rest of the book from being too slick and, as a result, a bit on the boring side. The romance between Sterling and Mac has no depth. It seems forced – as if it comes out of nowhere. While maybe most romances do come out of nowhere, the trick is to not make it seem like that. The use of a heroine in a wheelchair is, perhaps, the strong point of this book.
There are probably those out there who might like this book but I would have prefered something a little bit more passionate as a last dance.