Things haven’t been going according to plan recently for Vic. First, an ex dies and saddles with him with a teenage son he didn’t know he had. Then Delaney comes back to town, the woman he has been obsessing over for nearly 12 years after she abandoned him before they were due to elope. To cap it all off, a mysterious animal has been killing off livestock in a fashion reminiscent of the old legend of the Chupacabra. All are situations that he needs to address, only how exactly to do that seems to evade him.
Delaney left San Julio under a cloud. 12 years earlier, she was supposed to meet Vic at 3:45 am to elope and be happy. Vic didn’t show and instead Delaney was subjected to a horrific attack that left with her emotional scars and a tendency to sleep walk. When she went to find him, he was in the arms of another and, without stopping to think, she ran off to find a life elsewhere. After numerous psychologists, the sleepwalking has gotten worse and so she returns to San Julio to where it all began, in an attempt to stop it once and for all.
Vic isn’t stupid, he knows that he still wants Delaney. After numerous run ins, he proposes that they use sex to exorcise each other from their hearts once and for all. He doesn’t quite grasp that feelings as deep as the ones they once held for each other don’t disappear completely. When Delaney becomes the bridge to a relationship with the surly son that he desperately wants to love him, the old feelings start to raise their heads with a vengeance. When it seems that the Chupacabra’s main aim is to get Delaney, he realises that he never wants to let this woman go again. But is he man enough to stop a legend? And is Delaney capable of forgiving the man that is at the heart of all her pain?
Well, I didn’t expect this! From the cover, what I was expecting was a hot and heavy romance, but that isn’t what I got at all. I got a nice suspense novel with a romance plot; I say that the plots were about 50:50 weighted. I say nice because I did have a few issues with it overall, but for the most part I enjoyed it!
Vic is a man with a lot of problems, one seems to be communication! He didn’t show up at 3:45 AM to meet Delaney because he decided that running off wasn’t the honourable way of marrying her. Instead of COMMUNICATING this, he just stood her up….at 3:45 AM…..in the woods. I don’t care where you live, 3:45AM is not the place to be stood alone. Nice plan Vic! When Delaney left without an explanation (yes, Vic is not the only one in this book with a communication issue!) he tried to forget her, but no-one elicited the same strength of feelings within him. When she returns, he has to exorcise her from his system. Instead of choosing the sensible option of discussing his feelings, he tries a much less effective and stupider option by trying to eradicate his feelings with sex. Silly man!
Vic as a Father struggling to interact with his teenage son was a storyline that I enjoyed immensely. He had a life he enjoyed and then this surly, heart-broken teenager was dropped in his lap with no warning or instructions. He had no idea what to do and any idea that he came up with was rebuffed by a child who couldn’t even bring himself to call him Dad. My heart broke for the both of them, both thrust into a situation they were unprepared for. The scenes were lovely, heart-warming and, in the case of some of the scenes, quite heart-breaking.
Delaney is another one with communication issues, but hers I accept. She had been horrifically attacked and then apparently betrayed; I’d have done a midnight flit too. The sleepwalking had began not long after she left and was getting more and more dangerous; she could leave buildings and wander around for heaven’s sake! When Vic proposes his idea to relieve the tension she balks at the idea. I applauded her. Then the tension begins to grow to the point that she does something plain weird. She then realises it might be a good idea to do something about the tension before she becomes Chupacabra food. I liked her; she made sense and she was fun to read about.
The plot with the Chupacabra I’m not going to go into in too much detail about; let’s be honest, this is the bit that is the mystery. It was a nice, tension building plot which I enjoyed trying to play detective with. The only complaint is that the ending completely blindsided me; it came out of nowhere. I’m not sure if I read it again, looking for more clues with the knowledge of the ending, I would have come to the right conclusion. This doesn’t take away from the excellent writing that created a good amount of tension that gripped me immediately!
Overall, this was a book which was an easy read that I enjoyed and wasn’t all that long. It had a nice amount of tension in both the suspense and romance plots and this kept me turning the pages. I particularly enjoyed seeing Vic try to interact with his teenage son. This is an author I will definitely try again.