Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Review: Dangerous by Millie Criswell

Ethan Bodine is a Texas Ranger who has the hardest assignment of his career: he has to track and bring in his brother Rafe on a murder charge. Wilhelmina Granville, called Willy, a horticulturist turned bounty hunter, is also after Rafe, desperate for the reward money so she can save her aunts' home from foreclosure. A professional lawman and tracker and a green, innocent newly returned west after years in Boston would of course be destined to meet this way, right? Well, in this book they are and so not only do they meet up but Willy saves Ethan's life with the judicious use of a parasol poke to the eye. After that, Ethan's sense of justice and fair play keeps the two of them together as lust ratchets up and eventually blossoms forth as fully-fledged love, complete with misunderstandings and groveling.

Just about everything in this book is so completely unbelievable to the point that it becomes hard to read with a straight face. The sexual tension is pretty palpable almost from the get go. Willy's attitude about sex and specifically premarital sex is not typical of the era. Her blase acceptance of pregnancy outside of marriage is positively modern. She is certainly drawn as an early feminist but the characterization goes too far, making it impossible to believe her as a character of her time. It was also rather unbelievable that Willy, with no experience of tracking, would be able to be as quick and effective (and sometimes more so) than Ethan with his years of experience. Sometimes I can go with the flow on things like this but I couldn't do it with this book. Each additional farfetched moment served to rankle and irritate like a burr under a saddle blanket. Other people have really loved it but I was relieved to turn the last page and move on to the next read.

1 comment:

  1. Ah, one of those time-travel books, where the characters beam in from modern times without comment. Sometimes I'm OK with that, but there had better be strong compensations elsewhere.


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