Sunday, January 26, 2020

Book Review: Now You See Her

If you didn't know, Linda Howard is my favorite author. I don't know why she's my favorite, she just is and I own a lot of her books. I think almost all of them, actually. I should do an inventory on that again, just to make sure. I've had this one on my shelf for a long time, I found it at a library used book sale and got it for $1 but I'm only not getting into it.
Now You See Her - Linda Howard
A talented painter in her early thirties, Paris Sweeney has achieved enviable success: her work sells at an exclusive New York City gallery, and her popularity is at an all-time high. Life is good, and Sweeney, as she prefers to be called, is content.
But lately, Sweeney's dreams -- lush, vivid, and drenched in vibrant hues -- seem to echo a growing restlessness that has taken hold of her. Suddenly, impulsively, Sweeney falls into a night of intense passion with millionaire Richard Worth. Now, the true dangers of her all-consuming urges are about to be revealed where Sweeney least expects it: in her paintings.
After a creative frenzy she can barely recall, Sweeney discovers she has rendered a disturbing image -- a graphic murder scene. Against her better instincts, she returns to the canvas time and again, filling out each chilling detail piece by piece. But when a shattering, real-life murder mirrors her creation, Sweeney falls under suspicion. With every stroke of her brush, she risks incriminating herself with her inexplicable knowledge of a deadly crime. And every desire -- including her hunger for Richard -- is loaded with uncertainty as Sweeney races to unmask a killer.
I have to tell you that this book is set in the mid to late 90's (my copy was published in 1998) so there are some things that haven't aged well. The sexual assertiveness of Richard probably wouldn't sit well in a book published today maybe. Also fun was a small quip about the "millennium compliance" of businesses, which was a big thing back then. Even I remember it! So if you're ultra feminist and won't stand for anything like that, maybe steer clear.

In this one we have Sweeney who has recently, out of nowhere, started seeing ghosts. She has no idea what is causing it and she doesn't see all ghosts, just randomly. Her hometown started looking at her like she's got significant mental health problems so she decided to move to New York City under the assumption that she would fit in a little better, or at least wouldn't stand out as much. All was going well until she started essentially sleep painting. She gets up in the middle of the night randomly and paints. Unfortunately she is painting things like dead people. So, not great.

Enter Richard. He's the soon to be ex-husband of Candra, who runs the art gallery that Sweeney showcases and sells her work. Candra is up a creek without a paddle because when the divorce is final she is likely to be in dire straits so she starts doing some illegal things in order to stay afloat. In the meantime, Richard has taken interest in Sweeney, who is pretty oblivious to sexual attraction all together.

While Richard and Sweeney are heating things up with flirting and almost daily visits, Candra is putting herself in danger by trying to blackmail a senator. All goes to hell when Candra comes up dead and it is up to Richard and Sweeney to basically solve the case especially when they look like the best suspects.

Overall? I really liked this. With most Linda Howard books, I flew through this in two evenings. I always like that I think I can solve who did it but the final unwrapping of it comes together and there is always a little bit I didn't see coming and I appreciate that.

If you are a fan of Linda Howard, you will love this one like you do the others. The writing is good, the characters are pretty alright, and it plays out like a corny Lifetime romantic suspense movie and sometimes that's just what you need. If you're coming here looking for a steamy romance or some real grit to it, probably keep walking. But if you're looking for a quick read that you'll be rooting for Sweeney to get her junk together and just go to bed with the guy already, this is your next read.

This post contains affiliate links. Happy reading! 

1 comment:

Shooting Stars Mag said...

I love that even if I guess the culprit, I don't always now all the details! Glad this was a relatively good read for you.