Die for Me by Karen Rose is her 8th romantic suspense novel set primarily in Philadelphia. Are you looking for edge of your seat romantic suspense? Then look no further than Karen Rose latest novel. I read it in one sitting. Here is the book description below:
COME TO ME
The first victim is found in a snow-covered Philadelphia field. Detective Vito Ciccotelli enlists the aid of archaeologist Sophie Johannsen to determine exactly what lies beneath the frozen ground. Despite years of unearthing things long buried, nothing can prepare Sophie for the matrix of graves dug with chilling precision. The victims buried there haunt her. But the empty graves terrify her-the killer isn’t done yet.
SCREAM FOR ME
He is cold and calculating, the master of a twisted game. Even with Vito and Sophie hot on his trail, he will not stop. One more empty grave must be filled, and one last scream must be heard-the scream of an archaeologist who is too close for comfort and too near to resist…
DIE FOR ME
PPD officers, Vito Ciccotelli and his partner, Nick Lawrence have to race against time to catch a perp who uses Medieval torture devices to kill his victims. Sophie Johannsen is a linguist and archaeologist who helps the PPD uncover nine graves most of which are filled with human remains from years past. With more than a few still empty. Another thread develops with a cop from the Georgia Bureau looking for his estranged parents. Then there’s the romance that is pretty well balanced with the suspense part of the story.
The story is tightly plotted with a almost unrelenting pace. The reader is engaged almost immediately into the story and really, you literally can’t put it down until the last page is turned. The suspense part of the novel is pretty gruesome as only Karen Rose can come up with. The perp in here has all the trademarks of your typical serial killer profile. A monster seeking out victims whose vulnerabilities renders them blind to his deceit.
The romance in Die for Me is pretty explosive. Sophie and Vito’s first impression of each other is not a good one. This instigates many do-overs until they finally find a connection. Character wise, we see that Sophie Johannsen finds herself disappointed in her career. She left a important digg in France to take care of a family obligation. Hired as a curator for the Albright Museum, part of Sophie’s job as historian is dressing up in costume and giving public tours at the museum. This leaves her with little time for her exhibits and doing ‘real work’.
Meanwhile, Vito’s family is dealing with a crisis and like a strong family they stick together. And then you have the perp working for a B-list game designer, oRo Entertainment, who was faced with bankruptcy until Behind Enemy Lines video game racked up enough sales to get oRo a booth at Pinnacle (which is like the Oscars for game designers). Few suspect but no one knows definitively that the perp has been using real models for his death scenes. Talk about art imitating life or vice-versa.
Karen Rose is at the top of her game and she continues to get stronger with each effort. I enjoyed Count to Ten but I enjoyed Die For Me even more. Of course, there are some little quibbles that plague almost all romantic suspense novels. It can’t be helped. Like the perp explaining all their motivations to the faux victim before they’re rescued or the quickie romance that develops within a week’s time.
What I love is that Ms. Rose doesn’t make it easy for the reader to identify the perp even when we are given their POV. I find the most enjoyable part of reading her books is trying to figure out who the perp is with the few clues that she doles out. She really is good at throwing out red herrings and making me think twice about who I think is the killer. Also, her novels are loosely connected to each other. This is my second Karen Rose book and I didn’t have any problems following along. There is maybe one character from a previous book that make an appearance, I think. All in all, Die For Me was a un-put-downable read. The romance and the suspense is equally balanced and I was engaged in both. I debated on a grade because this read like an A read for me but it’s not a book I’d say I’d reread anytime soon. But I so enjoyed the story and the characters, so it’s a B+ read for me.
[tags]Romantic Suspense, Karen Rose[/tags]