He's lost his edge....
Photojournalist Cache Calder lives to chase a great story. He's just returned from the Middle East after surviving a suicide bombing that left him injured and grief-stricken. The last thing he wants is to travel to the wilds of Alaska on a "Where Is She Now" Assignment. But when his editor informs him that his subject is former kidnapping victim, Amelia Bennett who jump-started his career 20 years earlier, he packs his bags.
She lives on the Edge....
Mel Bennett's carefully maintained control unravels the moment she meets Cache Calder. Attraction flares for the man who seems to really "know" her. No one at the Edge of Reason Lodge is aware she was the young teenager who'd survived one of the most publicized kidnappings in recent history, and she wants it to stay that way. But she starts to question her heart and her sanity when unexplained incidents begin to happen and a deadly threat returns to finish what he'd started so long ago.
©2013 Tiffinie Helmer (P)2014 Audible Inc.
The story of Edge takes place at the Edge of Reason Lodge in picturesque Alaska near Homer. Her Mel Bennett and her motley crew of trusted staff entertain a limited amount of guests with whale watching, hiking, kayaking and wildlife. New guests are arriving along with her recently divorced and estranged sister, along with her two teenage children. Life is about to get complicated for Mel and she does not handle complicated. Something else has come to her quiet little sanctuary and she will need to have her wits about her. The story is delivered in multiple perspectives and drew me right in.
Helmer kept us on our toes with twists, fear and a few near death scenes. She allowed the tension to build, weaving in the scenery, background information on Mel’s prior kidnapping and the remote setting only ramped up the suspense.
The romance felt genuine and had a nice mix of banter, humor and complications. There is heat, but it is fade to black and perfect for a larger audience.
Mia Chiromonte made me a little nervous at first, but once we left the darker beginning, her voice as Mel kicked in strong and I connected. While I was not overly pleased with Cache’s voice. She nailed Tom’s preening beautifully and the Russian accent of Sergei. My issue with Cache is one I have with female narrator’s capturing the male voice. It sounded horse, but eventually grew on me.
Helmer paints a three-D picture not only with the beautiful lodge, ocean and woods but also with her characters. She gave them depth and I can close my eyes and bring forth an image of each of them. The tale hooks you from the onset as we travel back to Mel’s abduction and with our time spent at the lodge. The author even weaved in facts about wildlife, fishing and nature in Alaska. I loved all of these little details.
Edge is the type of romantic suspense that stays with you and had more substance than your typical escape book placing it somewhere neared to a thriller or mystery novel.
My tastes are fairly eclectic. I'm open to most genres. I LOVE reading, enjoying quite a few genres. Love audiobooks, especially mysteries.
Amelia (Mel) Bennett was abducted by a cult when she was 12-years old. Her suffering was further exacerbated by the media. Cache Calder was the photographer for the article that exploited her story, creating an indelible image of her that no one's forgotten. It's 20 years later and he and his editor are off to Alaska for a follow up interview with the reclusive subject. Cache believes he has her consent...not.
What I enjoyed
Alaska is one of those places that is both fascinating and terrifying to me. This story elevates both my fascination and fear as Helmer does a great job of bringing to life the awesome beauty and the rawness of the state. It added to the suspense and the romance. Mel's story slowly unfolded throughout the story, which normally doesn't work for me but the setup of the prologue laid the foundation perfectly. Her romance with Cache seemed to develop a bit quickly but it took a hard hit later, forcing them to take a step back that made it even better.
The mystery and suspense was very well done. I honestly didn't figure out who was after Mel until it was revealed.
While the narrator enunciated and paced the story flawlessly, her tone wasn't the best for the suspenseful aspects. She was a bit too sweet and upbeat for the tense moments. Otherwise, she was fine.
The bottom line
I enjoyed this story, especially it's Alaskan setting. I'm looking forward to continuing the series.
(I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review)
I love books.
Cache is a photojournalist who has recently returned from the Middle East where he survived a suicide bombing that caused him the loss of two friends and a pretty serious leg injury. His editor informs him that they are going to the wilds of Alaska so that he can do a "where are they now" story about a girl whose photograph jump-started his career 20 years ago. Mel Bennet survived a horrendous kidnapping and attempted murder 20 years ago and after some years of self-destructive behavior and rehab, she has finally found a place she would like to call home. Living secluded in Alaska at a small lodge where no one knows that she is the famous victim. Cache and Mel experience a strong attraction to one another, but Cache knows that the moment Mel realizes who he is, their relationship will be doomed.
I found this to be a really engaging story. I had no problem connecting to the characters, and found myself more and more interested in some of the peripheral characters as the story continued. Mel has been through a lot, not only through the actual trauma she suffered, but also through the crazy media exposure she had to deal with in the aftermath. I was frustrated with her at times, because while her determination and stubbornness had helped her survive and gotten her to a much better place in her life, it was clear that the walls she put up were also keeping her from finding the connections and relationships that she deserved. Cache was an easy character to root for, even though it was tough knowing that he had information that was going to be hurtful to Mel. The chemistry between them was very hot, and I was really hoping that they would be able to open up to one another and find happiness together.
I loved the wilderness and survival aspects of this book. The location of the Edge almost felt like another character int eh story. The beauty and danger provided an interesting back drop for all the action in the story. There is a lot of suspense, and some action but what I enjoyed most was the relationships. Aside from the budding relationship between Cache and Mel, seeing Mel and her sister start to reconnect after a rough childhood was something I enjoyed a lot.
The one thing I struggled a little bit was with the choice of narrator. While she was very articulate, and I felt she would be great for a number of books, I didn't feel that she was the right voice for this one. She was a little too perky for some of the characters and subject matter, and I was aware at all times that I was being read to. I struggled with some of her male voices as well. The narration didn't affect my ability to enjoy this story, but it was hard to feel like the potential for this audiobook to be even better with just the right narrator. Overall, I enjoyed this book a lot and I would gladly read more by this author in the future. I would also recommend this to anyone looking for a good romantic suspense.
*a copy of this audiobook was provided in exchange for an honest review
I love that all the books in this series are stand alone, but also follow well in the series. They are believable and fun and ring of real life.
I enjoyed the different backgrounds and romantic story lines of the people staying at, or running the Edge lodge.
She had a sweet, soft, soothing voice that didn't, at times, didn't match up well with the mood of the book. Sometimes she sounded too young and didn't lend much credibility to the male characters.
I usually waffle when it comes to reading the Romantic Suspense genre. Many times the love story is crammed in and around the drama-filled plot. In this case, though, I found myself sucked in almost from the start. Then again, I am a total sucker for any plot variation of A. Christie's "Ten Little Indians." Here, a group of relative strangers find themselves isolated at the beautiful, but remote 'Edge of Reason Lodge' completely surrounded by the wilds of Alaska.
There, the closed-off, completely self-sufficient Lodge Manager, Amelia "Mel" Bennett--who has found herself the perfect place to hide away from life after her much-publicized, horrific childhood abduction--meets the gorgeous and mysterious Cache Calder--a world-renowned photojournalist--who bears the scars of his own recent trauma. Mel wonders if he could be the one man to thaw her frozen heart. Or, Cache fears, he might just be the one man to break her heart into a million frozen slivers, once she discovers who he really is and why he's really there.
Then, Mel starts seeing glimpses, reminders of her horrid past. She flatly refuses to acknowledge that someone staying at HER lodge might be evil. She refuses to accept that one of her guests, or someone she's known for years could want to hurt her, or to accept that her home is no longer safe. As she fits the puzzling pieces together, she finally realizes the terrible truth and fully accepts the deadly extent this individual will go to in order to lure her away from safety and out into the wilderness, where he watches and waits.
---It won't be long now. Soon, the sinner Amelia has grown up to be will discover that her control is but fleeting. One false step, and she'll find herself at his mercy. And there, under his complete control, at long last, she'll face her final judgement.---
This time, though, Mel isn't a helpless child. This time she won't go meekly to her certain death. She's tired of living in fear. This time she'll be ready to fight back!
But, in readying themselves for their Epic Battle of Good versus Evil, they may have overlooked one thing: that Mankind's most enduring folly is his assumption that he maintains any real control: Especially so very deep in the wilds of Alaska.
Note: There are some great romantic moments. And i loved the ending. The story did leave a few unanswered questions, though:
--how about a peek at Cache's story about Mel;
--what in the HELL was Tom thinking?;
--more about Sergei's mysterious back story;
--and did Mel eventually sell or display her quilts?
Maybe, some of these points are addressed in one of the other "Edge" books or else the "Wild Wo/Men of Alaska" series.
Reviewer for Delighted Reader Blog
Yes, it was a strong emotional story with balance between romance and suspense. It always has really good growth arcs for all the characters and not just the main two. The story felt complete and had depth.
Nicole is a secondary character, but she has a strong presence. She made mistakes in the past, but she has owned them and is trying to make right even though her sister and kids aren't making it easy on her.
Lynette and Ramsay were a hoot too. They're ongoing squabble lent a nice lighter note to a darker story.
I really like how she conveyed the emotion behind the words and thoughts. I was right there with the characters. Her pacing was really good too. Each character was distinguishable and her voices weren't a distraction as I listened.
Not really, but not because I wanted to quit or didn't like the book. It is very emotional and has some tough stuff going on so that I needed a break just to regroup. The main character, Mel, thinks she has it all together and that she is in control, but it is obvious she doesn't. It was hard being there and watching her have to go to almost a breaking point before she could really start to heal.
This is a story that the reader has to be patient with and has to be in the right frame of mind to appreciate. The female protagonist was harsh, bitter, and rough on people and kept everyone at a distance with the I am in control and invincible attitude. She is a tough woman who I admire for her past hardships that she overcame to a certain extent, but also felt sad for as I read her story. In the face of real danger, she did the stubborn-stupid thing a few times. That being said, it was worth it to stick with her and right through to the end.
Also a warning for those who might have triggers there is a background of cult, capture, and related stuff in the heroine's past.
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