The Chilling Deception, by Jayne Castle (Guinevere Jones #2)

>> Friday, May 05, 2006

book cover
The Chilling Deception continues the Guinevere Jones series, written by Jayne Ann Krentz as Jayne Castle. This is the second book in this extremely HTF series, the first one being The Desperate Game, which I read only last week. Obviously, I couldn't wait to see in what direction JAK took this!

Cold Vengeance

Guinevere Jones - Besides being brainy, brave, and beautiful she had an uncanny way with people. From the moment she found the gold gun in the mauve-and-black marble executive washroom, she knew Mr. Vandyke was in serious trouble.

Zachariah Justis - Only the promise of a wild weekend cavorting with Guinevere in the wintry San Juan Islands convinced him to come along to provide security for Vandyke Development.

But it was business before pleasure when events brought chilling danger and a dead man determined to avenge the past.
TCD was nice, though not as much as TDG. Still, I enjoyed it enough for a B. It's a fun, quick read.

Guinevere is worried. She's been temping for a land developer involved in a huge deal, and she can tell the man is stressed out. It seems to her he's actually excessively stressed out, even for such a big deal. There's something going on, she's sure, and when she finds a gold-plated gun in his private restroom, she begins to worry he might be dangerously depressed.

So when Vandyke, her temporary boss, announces they're to spend the winter weekend at a resort on the San Juan islands (just off Seattle), to finalize the deal, Gwen manages to convince him that it might be a good idea to bring Zac with them to help him guard the briefcase with the bids.

But convincing Vandyke is easy compared to convincing Zac to go. This is very definitely not the type of business he was thinking of when he opened his security consulting company. But when he calms down he realizes that, hey, free weekend at a resort with his er, girlfriend, the same girlfriend who's been a bit hard to pin down lately. Plus, that way she won't be going there alone with all those men (Zac does have his old-fashioned moments), so he kindly decides to accept the job.

But what seems like a made-up job ends up being something very different, when it turns out Vandyke really has reason to be a bit nervous.

The good? Zac and Gwen together are fun. The chemistry's there in spades, and I loved the way they danced around each other trying to have The Talk. Both really want the same thing, but they feel they have to gently manouver the other in that direction, not realizing they're both trying to do the same. In the end, there really isn't that much progress in their relationship from the point in which we left them at the end of TDG, but what was there was satisfying.

The blah? The plot. Not bad, but not particularly compelling, either. There's always a bit of dejá vu with JAK, and it was pretty intense here.

The bad? It seems I've been beset by clumsily sequel-baiting authors lately. TCD was just another example. The last chapter is actually the first chapter of The Sinister Touch. What's wrong with having it as an excerpt?

All in all, though, it was a really fun way to spend a couple of hours.


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