Series: Midnight

Midnight Obsession by Melinda Leigh

Midnight Obsession by Melinda LeighMidnight Obsession by Melinda Leigh
Series: Midnight #4
Published by Montlake Romance on January 3rd 2017
Pages: 336
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three-stars

In Wall Street Journal bestselling author Melinda Leigh’s edgy new thriller, Louisa Hancock thought she was safe…but there’s a new killer in town.
When a mysterious package lands on Louisa Hancock’s doorstep, the Philadelphia museum curator can hardly anticipate the nightmare that’s about to envelop her. The package is addressed to her father—an expert in Viking culture—and inside is a ninth-century sword, a chilling thank-you note, and photos of two dead bodies in a tableau evoking a Nordic funeral. The gruesome images match a recent crime scene. But before the police can investigate the killer’s connection to Louisa’s father, Ward Hancock vanishes.
Sports bar owner Conor Sullivan wants nothing more than to spend his life with Louisa. Devoted and protective, he refuses to leave her side after her father’s disappearance. When a troubled young boxer he’s been coaching is suspected of the murders, Conor is pulled in even deeper. Desperate, Louisa and Conor take it upon themselves to find her father, but soon another ritualistic slaying makes it clear there’s a Viking-obsessed serial killer on the loose. And he has a new target: Louisa.

A spate of murders based on Viking rituals somehow involves Louisa Hancock once again, not long after the trauma she suffered at the hands of a deranged killer a few months ago. Similar to ‘Midnight Betrayal’ in format, ‘Midnight Obsession’ delivers the same thrilling ride, with the key difference being that Louisa and Conor are an established couple here, even if their hard-won HEA in the previous book comes with more bumps along the way. That said, it’s definitely good enough as a standalone, though reading the previous installment would definitely provide a fuller picture both Louisa’s and Conor’s history.

The romance certainly isn’t quite the focus here—there is no relationship conflict or angst to get through—leaving the suspense and gang-wars to drive the narrative. Yet Melinda Leigh writes Conor and Louisa in a fashion where there’s mutual admiration and much loved-up feelings on both sides, leaving us with no doubt that their relationship is rock-solid through this ordeal. The pacing as well, is steady, without dramatic lurches from breathlessness to sluggishness, perhaps it’s a little slow at the start but it picks up as each murder and/or tragic event start piling on top on one another as the noose tightens around Louisa and Conor. But because the story’s pretty light on the romance, I had expected more gore or at least a greater immersion in the Viking rituals already laid out in the plot; instead the book doesn’t quite deliver these, yet what it does however, is reaffirm the rightness of this couple with many statements on how far they’ve come with each other, right up to the very end.

A huge part of the draw in reading mystery/crime novels is the wild goose chase we’re led on as we’re teased about the identity of the suspect. Leigh does this and more, but most importantly, I felt as though I’d had an entertaining time.

three-stars

Midnight Betrayal by Melinda Leigh

Midnight Betrayal by Melinda LeighMidnight Betrayal by Melinda Leigh
Series: Midnight #3
Published by Montlake Romance on September 2nd 2014
Pages: 334
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five-stars

Curator Dr. Louisa Hancock left behind Maine and her troubled past for Philadelphia and a job at a prominent museum. Just when it seems that Louisa’s new life is safe from her dark secrets, the body of a museum intern is found—the victim of a brutal and baffling murder.
Louisa realizes this is no random crime. And when another intern goes missing, the abduction is linked to the only man who has ever tempted Louisa’s heart—Conor Sullivan, the sexy owner of a Philly sports bar. Louisa’s past has taught her to be wary, but her heart refuses to believe Conor is guilty.
Now Conor and Louisa must dodge a police investigation—and their growing desire—as they race to find the real killer before another girl turns up dead. But trusting Conor could be deadly, especially as the evidence against him mounts…and as a merciless killer targets Louisa as the next victim.

Wow.

Louisa Hancock and Conor Sullivan reunite in the latest and possibly the most compelling of the Midnight series when a brutal murder of an intern occurs after the theft of an artefact replica. From here onwards, it’s a series of twists and turns in the plot as Louisa and Conor find their way back to each other amidst the growing danger.

Beautifully written with relentless action and breathless suspense, I was certainly thrown for a huge loop when the killer was finally revealed. After the disappointment of ‘Midnight Sacrifice’, I was thrilled with both Louisa and Conor and loved how their story developed throughout the book – kudos to Leigh for making 2 people from 2 very different worlds come together in a way that I found poignant and believable.

Definitely a keeper and something I’d be going back to read again…and again.

five-stars