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Simon Says Die by Lena Diaz

Posted in Contemporary Romance/ Mystery/Crime/ Reviews/ Romantic Suspense 17th April 2015
Simon Says Die by Lena DiazSimon Says Die by Lena Diaz
Series: Deadly Games, #2
Published by Avon Impulse on April 17th 2012
Pages: 416
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one-star

Madison McKinley knows someone is stalking her. The police tell her she's imagining things, and they're too busy trying to find the "Simon Says" killer to investigate. But day by day, hour by hour, Madison's terror grows stronger, and not even the return of FBI Special Agent Pierce Buchanan into her life can calm her fears. Besides, how can she ask Pierce for his help after the way she ended things between them?
Pierce still wants Madison's love, and his drive to protect her is more powerful than ever. He believes she's in danger, even if the cops don't. Finally, as more people start dying and the evidence mounts, the police turn their attention to Madison—as a suspect. Was Pierce a fool to trust her again, or are they both caught in a complex game that neither will survive?

Madison – or rather, a weak, repulsive female lead –  is the sole reason I gave up on this. Childish, reckless, defiant at every turn with a misguided sense of right and wrong, petulant with tantrums that would rival a 2 year old’s, I think there can’t be enough negative adjectives I could put down here that would do her justice as the worst character I’ve ever had the displeasure of reading. Maturity here – or the lack of it – is the main issue here and I simply cannot read about a pairing where the hero is such a shining star in contrast to the dull and blunt surfaces of an undeserving heroine.

one-star

Tennessee Takedown by Lena Diaz

Posted in Contemporary Romance/ Mystery/Crime/ Reviews/ Romantic Suspense 12th April 2015
Tennessee Takedown by Lena DiazTennessee Takedown by Lena Diaz
Published by Harlequin on January 21st 2014
Pages: 224
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two-stars

It can't be a coincidence that in the past twenty-four hours, three different thugs have tried to kill or abduct Ashley Parrish. Sexy SWAT team leader Dillon Gray saved her, but now he wonders why someone would want to murder the beautiful accountant and why he finds her so infuriatingly attractive.
Then the FBI comes after Ashley for embezzlement, and Dillon knows he must protect her from a killer and prove she's being framed. Taking her on a hair-raising run through dangerous terrain barely fazes him. But wanting her from more than just one night scares the hell out of him.

Tennessee Takedown begins with a shootout and from there, it’s action and more action – barely enough for me to take a breath to get to know the 2 leads Dillon and Ashley better. Through the heroic rescues and the breathless escapes, I still wasn’t able to get a handle on both of them, let alone the chemistry that I found lacking. There is a solid plot here, but it’s unfortunately weakened by the superficial development characters and a tenuous connection between them that wasn’t too believable at all. Dillon’s hurried turnaround in the last few pages of the book was too rushed and Ashley’s eagerness to have him anyway in her life seemed more desperate than dignified – all to create an illusory HEA that I wasn’t exactly buying.

two-stars
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