April 30, 2013

Review: Submerged by Dani Pettrey

Submerged (Alaskan Courage, #1)
Submerged (Alaskan Courage #1)

A sabotaged plane. Two dead deep-water divers. 

Yancey, Alaska was a quiet town . . . until the truth of what was hidden in the depths off the coast began to appear. 


Bailey Craig vowed never to set foot in Yancey again. She has a past, and a reputation--and Yancey's a small town. She's returned to bury a loved one killed in the plane crash and is determined not to stay even an hour more than necessary. But then dark evidence emerges and Bailey's own expertise becomes invaluable for the case. 


Cole McKenna can handle the deep-sea dives and helping the police recover evidence. He can even handle the fact that a murderer
has settled in his town and doesn't appear to be moving on. But dealing with the reality of Bailey's reappearance is a tougher challenge.
She broke his heart, but she is not the same girl who left Yancey. He let her down, but he's not the same guy she left behind. Can they move beyond the hurts of their pasts and find a future together?


Well. Remind me not to read this series late at night! Talk about suspense. Ms. Pettrey is certainly wonderful at setting the stage for lots of heart-pumping and tense moments. I was calmly reading in my room and about jumped out of my skin when our dog knocked against the door! :D I find it a little extra creepy (in a good way!) when authors add in bits and pieces here and there from the bad guy's point of view. You know, that ominous he/she that plots nefarious traps that our heroes/heroines fall into at some point. And which make me say "No, no! Don't do that! Don't go that way! Don't choose that path! What are you thinking?! Don't you know the bad guy is waiting for you there?" Of course, being as they're fictional, they don't listen to me. Nonetheless, the suspense kept me on pins and needles during much of the second half of the story. And I was reminded why I read mostly fluffy stories, because my heart rate appreciates those better. ;) But when suspense is this well done, what can I do but read it?

The synopsis makes it seem that the story focuses mainly on Bailey, which is true to a certain degree. But much more of the focus comes on Cole and his family. The McKenna's are a wonderful clan! Having lost both of their parents, the siblings are very close and love each other dearly. Which is completely obvious from the first introduction to them. I loved all their interactions, how they knew one another so thoroughly that they could predict exactly how they would all react to situations, how they teased each other and laughed together, how they made everyone around them feel like part of the family. They are an awesome bunch and they felt really real. That's how real families work and how they care for one another. 

Cole works to solve the puzzle of who the bad guys are before more people get murdered. Along with him is his good friend Landon, a deputy, who gets some time in the spotlight himself (setting us up nicely for book #2). But Bailey isn't in the background by any means. She has a heart full of aches and hurts from a past that she can't seem to move beyond. She's quite strong actually, even though she wouldn't agree with that. To leave a bad past and work to become mature in life and especially in her relationship with God takes a tremendous amount of strength. And stubbornness! She also refuses to see some things, especially herself, for what they truly are-amazing and strong. But the McKenna family, notably Cole, determines not to let her try to push everyone away. They can't help to include her and make her an "adopted" sister. Which is just what she needs, people behind her with support and love.

This was simply a whole lot of fun! Great suspense, wonderful romance, and a lively family to add much needed laughter amongst the murders and deep sea diving. Definitely well worth picking up and trying for yourself! It will keep you glued to your seat and anxious to see what's coming for the rest of the McKenna clan in the upcoming books. :)

"She'd remained so stiff during the service-a blank expression on her face, her jaw rigid. 
His heart went out to her. For all she was going through and all she'd been through.
She'd always put on a brave front, pretending the crude nickname and teasing gossip didn't hurt her. Maybe it hadn't, but he doubted it.
She couldn't help but feel something at being used by the boys and teased by the girls. Never having any true friends, no real love outside of Agnes. Maybe he should have been kinder. Tried harder. Shown some mercy and forgiveness. But he'd been hurt too. He'd loved her once, and she'd stomped on his heart without any remorse.
But...
He sighed.
If he'd been a true friend, he would have tried yanking her back from the slippery slope she was hurtling down, instead of standing by and watching her self-destruct."


6 comments:

  1. Wonderful review, Kara! I enjoyed this book, too, although romantic suspense generally isn't my thing. :)

    I have to say, it's nice to hear that you find the villain's POV to be creepy in a good way! I incorporated the "villain's" POV into my latest WIP (historical romance), and I'm hoping it will go over OK. :) I'm on pins and needles hoping that my editor likes it overall!

    ~Amber

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    1. Thank you, Amber! I've learned that I have to read suspense in small doses. In other words, read one story, then read a fluffy/fun story three, and then I can read a suspense one again. I'm definitely more of a romantic comedy girl. :)

      I can understand being anxious! I'm sure it's not very easy to write from a villain's POV. But if you're going for some suspense/mystery, it definitely keeps the reader hooked into the story. Or at least it does me. ;) I sincerely hope your editor does like it!

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  2. Welcome to the club, Kara. :) Glad you liked this book - it's probably the best out of the two and I am now *dying* to get my hands on book three! Gage and Darcy are next up.

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    1. Thank you, Rissi! :) I do love this family. I have to admit though, I'm really anxious about Kayden's story and I don't know when that's coming, if at all! But I'm positive I'll enjoy the next books, if only we didn't have to wait until September for #3. Lucky for me I don't have to wait for #2. Well. I don't have to wait months and months. I still have to procure a copy for reading purposes. ;D

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  3. Loved this one so much! Happy you read it. :) Can't wait for "Stranded"!

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    1. Thanks for recommending it so highly, Charity! You and Rissi totally convinced me to try this (and I'm so, so glad you did!!). Thanks for your comment and encouragement. :)

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