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Easy Eighteen Challenge (The Whittler)
Serpent in Paradise by Stephanie James:
Like many of JAK’s heroines, this one marched to the beat of her own drummer. It took time for the reveal of why she’d come to an off the beaten path island and wound up at the bar owned by the hero. First published in 1983, the sexual politics were the only thing that made the book feel dated. While the hero’s arrogance was played mostly for comicality and didn’t faze the heroine, there were too many instances of him threatening to beat her and “I know best” attitude. But the heroine made the book work. It also benefitted from having the hero’s POV so at least the reader knew the hero didn’t mean his threats and his attitude improved. Overall a middle-of-the-road read elevated by humor and a delightful heroine.

The Alphabet Challenge Variation
I = Impostor’s Lure by Carla Neggers:
I guessed the villain’s identity very early on, but that didn’t detract from enjoying the meandering suspense plot. Most of the characters wanting to believe one person left for vacation early and another accidentally overdosed seemed forced, but since not truly believing it was an aspect of the mystery it wasn’t as bothersome as it could have been. There was a bit too much page time for the secondary couple from the last book. But overall it was fun catching up with the large cast of characters, particularly Lucy and Yank. There was a surprising, yet not altogether unexpected development that will no doubt have repercussions in future books (trying not to be spoilery). As usual, the heart of the book revolved around the main h/h. An enjoyable read and I’m looking forward to more books in this series.

  • Easy Eighteen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: 8 down, 10 to go…
  • The 18 in 18 Phonics Challenge: 13 down, 5 to go…
  • The Alphabet Challenge Variation : 16 down, 2 to go…
  • The Catchphrase Challenge: 14 down, 4 to go…
  • The Shoe Challenge: 15 down, 3 to go…
  • Easy Eighteen Challenge (The Whittler): 1 down, 17 to go…
  • The 21st Century Challenge: completed!