She's hunting for a mate and there's no more playing it safe.
Daisy Minor is bored. Worse than that, she's boring. A plain, small-town librarian, she's got a wardrobe as sexy as a dictionary and hasn't been on a date in years. She's never even had a lukewarm love affair, let alone a hot one. So when she wakes up on her 34th birthday and wonders how it is that she still lives with her widowed mom and spinster aunt while her friends have all gotten married and started families, she decides it's time to get a life - and a sex life. And as far as she can tell, good girls don't attract nearly as many men as bad ones.
One makeover later, Daisy has transformed herself into a party girl extraordinaire. She's dancing the night away at clubs, and laughing and flirting with men for the first time in, well, forever. With a new lease on her own place, it's open season for manhunting.
But on her way home late one night, Daisy sees something she's not supposed to see. Suddenly the target of a killer, she's forced to put her manhunt on hold. But the very moment she stops looking might be the moment she finds what she's wanted all along.
©2001 Linda Howington (P)2001 Simon & Schuster
"A thriller... with deftness and charm." (The Orlando Sentinel)
Years ago I purchased Midnight Rainbow by Linda Howard, the first romance novel I ever read. Since then, I have purchased all of Linda Howard's books and Open Season remains one of my favorites. While some of her novels, such as Cry No More, concern serious topics that will have you in tears, and others (All the Queen's Men) have more suspense, Open Season is a light hearted novel about life in a small southern town. This is a novel that will make you laugh.
Daisy is the town librarian who decides she is boring, dresses too plainly, doesn't date and living with her mom is not helping matters - so she gets a make over at the big city "beauty salon" vs. the small town "beauty shop" where she typically goes, moves out of her mother's house and rents a house only a first time renter could appreciate and attracts the attention of the local Sheriff, with humorous results. This is a romance novel, with a suspense sub plot that is there so the characters can have a romance. Deborah Hazlett's performance is very well done with distinctive accents, a good pace and inflection - she brings the book to life.
Linda Howard has written other books that have more involved plots, character development and suspense, but for sheer humor and joy, this book is a favorite.
*** 3.55 Stars ;) ***
Disclaimer: Linda Howard is my favorite author. I'm definitely biased, but surprisingly, it's not always positive bias. I hold her to higher standards because I know how talented she is. So here's my quick review a few weeks after listening to Open Season:
Open Season wasn't a memorable "best-of" Linda Howard book for me. But most fans really enjoy this book. So because it's a well-produced audiobook, I recommend it to Linda Howard fans. I do think it was a fun read. I also loved the Narrator.
Below is my enthusiastic and thorough review from the day I read it, which I erroneously submitted to the abridged version:
"God I love Linda Howard! She has written many of my all time favorite books. Unfortunately she's written some duds as well.
Luckily, this is a satisfying story with a fantastic performance by narrator Kate Forbes.
Daisy lives in a small town. She is a 34 year-old librarian, in need of a total life make-over. She has few friends, no men in her life, no style, and she still lives with her mother. With the help of her mother, her aunt and a gay friend named Todd, Daisy moves into her own place and invests her time and money into a full makeover.
Now she's ready to meet new people. For Daisy, meeting new people is code for "husband-hunting". I'm not into books involving desperate women searching for husbands, but LH works her magic and the story is well-written. You'll be sucked in by the 2nd chapter.
So fear of being an "old maid" pushes Daisy to find her inner beauty and bring it out, while also becoming more social. Meanwhile, surrounding towns are having trouble with GHB- a date rape drug that can be lethal in one dose. The new Chief of Police- Jack Russo is asked to assist the nearby city with its GHB problem. So while Daisy is trying to catch a husband at bars, Chief Russo is trying to find clues and info about GHB. Needless to say, worrying for her safety, he watches out for her.
That's as much as I can say without spoilers.
The story is very fun, sexy, and entertaining. The romance is wonderfully written. At times it's funny (there's a hysterically funny condom-buying scene that is unforgettable), then all of a sudden LH takes your breath away. Linda Howard can make more magic with a simple kiss and a slight caress than many authors achieve with a full-out sex scene. The characters are likeable and drive the book a great deal. The suspense plot is not forced, instead LH has woven it into the story slowly.
**** The downside : My issue in recommending this book is the somewhat degrading, possibly-offensive tone of the book at times. I assume this is a older book. I can't imagine she'd write such things today. But be prepared for condescending "jokes" about homosexuals, women and the south. Also a bit annoying: Daisy, the heroine, was explained as extremely intelligent. However, she acts without common sense and is ridiculously naive. Im sure the author intended her behavior to show her "innocence", but what it demonstrates to me is an obvious unintended contradiction in the character's personality. Daisy seems far more like an airhead, than a bright woman of 34. She is still very likeable; I'm only dissapointed LH didn't realize her mistake.
That being said, this is still a good listen. Howard fans will like it. ***If you haven't read Linda Howard before, please download Dreamman, Mr Perfect and/or After the Night . Those are some of her A+ books, and they'll give a better example of her work for a first-time reader/listener.
For Howard fans, this won't disappoint, bearing in mind that is has a dated, slightly offensive tone.
Also narrator deserves kudos for her performance. Very well done."
Linda Howard is quickly becoming my favorite author. I have found that unlike other authors she makes me want to listen/read every word.
This book is fun, interesting, and Cinderelish (is that a word?) Since the previous reviewer pretty much explained what the book is about, very well I might add, there is nothing I would include. It is worth a credit or more.
I loved the characters in this story. The stereotypical small town people who, once you were introduced to them a bit turned out not to be so stereotypical after all. The interactions between mother and daughter, hero and heroine, even the puppy were delightful. I found myself laughing out loud.
I would absolutely listen to this book in one sitting. In fact as soon as I finished it I started listening again from the beginning.
A good old fashion story. This is one of Ms Howards earlier works. If you are a fan, this will not disappoint you.
not the best reader
some good laughs
love audio books - Anglophile
When I started listening to this unabridged version, I thought I'd downloaded the wrong book. Then I realized that the abridged version didn't have the prologue, which is very dark. What a relief when the story went to Daisy. I enjoy all of Linda Howard's novels, and I'm glad to see that audible now has the unabridged versions of all her books that they carry. Thanks, audible!
This is a fun story to listen to. I enjoyed the whole thing. I would recommend this book to most everyone that enjoys Linda Howards books.
Despite one major quibble (noted last) this is one of Howard's best, IMO. Heartwarming, sexy, and mildly suspenseful. A total beach read. Best of all -- it's funny!! Plus, this unabridged version provides a solid gold narration by Deborah Hazlett. I wish she would narrate more books. Easy on the ears, good vocal modulation, perfect pacing, and she makes the voices distinct enough to differentiate between the characters.
I have read this book in the past, and now I've listened to it. No matter how many times I "read" it, I always laugh. Daisy and Jack are such a kick! Adorable scenes with Jack, Daisy, and her Golden Retriever puppy, Midas. I believe I'm in love -- with both Jack and Midas!
Jack Russo, a former SWAT cop from NYC, is the chief of police in Hillsboro, a small town in northern Alabama (the author's home state). Daisy Minor is a naive, prim, and frumpy librarian. At age 34, she decides it's time to live a little, so it's OPEN SEASON and the manhunt is on, for Daisy's clock is ticking. She gets a total makeover with her friend Todd's help (but unbeknownst to Daisy, Todd has an ulterior motive for dolling her up).
Daisy is a trip. The scene when she was buying condoms!! I loved watching her come into her own in the small busy-body Southern town. I loved her puppy, too, and even enjoyed the scenes with her family.
Then there's Jack. Shrewd, experienced, but totally decent to the core. I loved his bemused and delighted interactions with Daisy. Lots of laughs between those two! He's also protective, putting his sniper and snooper skills to good use. And, as with all Howard's heroes, Jack gets a strong case of the hots for Daisy (a few explicit sex scenes).
The mystery itself was only moderately intriguing. Not terribly inspired, and everything fell into Jack's capable hands towards the end. The crime (sex trafficking of young girls and date-rape drugs) is a downer topic for me. The backstory of a certain abused and alcoholic wife was depressing. I did like finding out where/ how the boss villain was shot. :)
Major Quibble: I didn't care for the ending at all, when one of the villains knocks on a certain door. What in tarnation was that all about?? What was Howard thinking? No way. Just wrong.
Rewrite the main female character
The female lead was a prude and was judgemental and not very nice.
i dont know as i didnt listen to the whole book
I will just say straight out, I loved this book. Yeah, there were issues, but who cares.
It had humor, it had likeable characters and villainous villains.
Did I mention there was humor?
The narrator did a great job. Lots of women's voices were needed and each was distinguishable. Intonations were spot on. The men's voices were not grating or silly sounding. The emotion was properly done; there was no overacting or over-reacting.
The story is simple; the execution, superb. Some people don't like the "ugly duckling" trope, but I like it. This on was quite well done. She is the one that initiates her change. She looks at her life, sees it is not going the way she wants it to and effects the changes that she thinks will get her to her desired end.
She initially has issues with the male protag. Needless to say, they work it out. There was a natural (if predictable) arc to their relationship. They tease each other, they have fun. He does not overpower her and she does not overpower him. They meld. They make a couple. The female protag is not TSTL and even chides him for thinking she would be TSTL in a certain situation.
Just fun and funny. Did I mention there was humor?
I really enjoyed the way the book was read
this is the sort of book that makes a good holiday read
"Big-hearted Small Town Heroine"
I loved Daisy Minor and felt that I had lost a friend when I finished listening to the book. I got absorbed in her family, her routine and could picture her clearly. This is a "feel good" novel which holds your interest, keeps the thriller suspense going and has a satisfying ending. Beautifully read by Deborah Hazlett I will definitely read it again if I need a pick me up.
"Daisy is on the way"
Funny, Scary and Witty
When Daisy bought the condoms. and the ball of fluff as the Chief calls the puppy.
An easy listen starts with the narrator and she was great, will listen to her again
It made me laugh and cry and cringe and everything in-between.
I new this was good, as I have the paperback, so it was a winner already. I loved the Chief he complemented Daisy all the way. I recommend that you read this you will be laughing and crying at the same time. Now I have this on audio I will be listening again and again. Read it, its great
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