The newest, cheapest, most simple version of the kindle just recently sucked me in. I've always loved the aesthetic of books: how the pages feel, the cover art, the thickness as you hold it, the typesetting. But the cheap price and the ability to check out books from the library without the inherent risk of bedbugs along with them (I'm only being a little paranoid here; I got bedbugs about three years ago, suspiciously coinciding with the public library dealing with the same issue.) convinced me that I could give up the aesthetic for convenience. I have yet to determine if the kindle will drastically change my reading habits. Between the relatively limited selection at the library and the plethora of free classics on Amazon, I'll have to see what I actually end up reading.
One thing that's easier is getting and reading those guilty-pleasure romance novels. The covers of my favorite romance authors seem to be trending in the more respectable direction, but it's hard to take myself seriously when I'm walking around with a cover boasting a sweaty, shirtless dream man. Thus, my first couple of books I got for my kindle from the library were romance novels, although this is mostly to do with the fact that there are incredibly long wait lists for some of the other books I'm waiting to read.
Pursuit (2009) by Karen Robards is one of those novels. I've read a number of her books and they are always full of suspense and mystery. They also tend to be relatively violent, but they've always been easy and interesting to read. This one was no different. I finished it in about two sittings, and despite the fact that I found some of it ridiculously unbelievable, I was entertained throughout.
Jessica Ford is a new associate at a powerful, influential law firm in D.C. Her boss, Mr. Davenport, is close friends and the personal attorney of the first lady. After a car crash kills the first lady, with Jessica as the only survivor, she finds her life in danger as unknown assailants with powerful connections try to take out the only witness to what might have been murder. Mark Ryan (a romance novel name, if ever I've heard one--and an ex-professional football player!) was in charge of the secret service detail for the first lady and is also interested in finding out some answers.
The action in this book never stops. Someone's life is always in jeopardy, the characters are always running and barely getting away. Again, it was difficult to put down. I think Robards did a good job by putting the romance on the back burner for most of the book. The characters don't fall into each others' arms the first time they see each other, but deal with trying to keep themselves alive first. It felt like--and could probably be turned into--a possibly entertaining although rather predictable action movie.
***SPOILER***I had a couple of problems with the believability of some of the plot points. For instance, how could a junior associate know how to access the President of the United States' phone records? Unfortunately, the most unbelievable of these plot points anchored the entire story. Fortunately, you don't learn about it until the end, so for most of the book, you think something really interesting might be going on. The motive for the brutal murder of the first lady as well as the killing and chasing down of countless innocents is that the first lady had her husband's phone, which contained some videos of him practicing some bondage with another woman. Sure, this might be timely coming right before the whole Anthony Weiner scandal, but in my opinion, it is a ridiculous motive for murder. And the end was wholly unsatisfying. I wanted the truth to come out and let the pieces fall where they would, but instead all the bad people were killed in a plane crash. Blegh. I'm against the death penalty, and even more so when it is done by god knows who with no trial. That's not justice. ***END SPOILER***
And they lived happily ever after.