Published by St. Martin's Press on May 29, 2018
Genres: Contemporary, Romantic Suspense
FINAL DECISION: A difficult and timely subject. A mass shooting alters the lives of everyone connected to the events. Simone and Reed alter and rebuild their lives and eventually find one another. A nice romance combined with the suspense of someone who wants to continue the body count.
THE STORY: On a summer’s evening, three young men execute a horrible crime in a mall and theater in Maine. Simone Knox, a teenager, ends up hiding in the bathroom at the theater calling 911. Reed Quartermaine, a college student, is in the mall when the shooting takes place. That event changes both of their lives. Their struggles eventually bring them in orbit of one another while someone else is eliminating survivors.
OPINION: I generally prefer my books heavy on the romance with some suspense thrown in. This book is much more a suspense and story of rebirth after a tragedy, but the story works so well in bringing Reed and Simone together that I really enjoyed this one.
I enjoyed seeing these characters build their lives and find one another. The story between them was sweet and sexy (even if they don’t meet until well into the story), and I was intrigued for every page and turn of their story.
The characters were well drawn. The varying reactions to the tragedy not only for Reed and Simone but also for their friends, family and even strangers kept the story grounded and compelling.
The suspense story worked well for me but I really appreciated that while it was important, it did not overshadow for me the relationships of the characters. The book ends up being about hope, about overcoming tragedy. The violence ends up being a part of the story, but not the most important part.
It’s been a long time since one of Roberts’ standalone books has interested me so much. This one will be on my keeper shelf.
WORTH MENTIONING: Although the book deals with a violent subject, I thought the depiction of violence was not gratuitous or overly graphic.
CONNECTED BOOKS: SHELTER IN PLACE is a standalone.
STAR RATING: I give this book 5 stars.