Ring of Lies. Victoria Howard
Author Victoria Howard
Narrated by: Michelle Ford
Length: 8 hrs and 31 mins
Publisher: BookRite Books
Available from Audible.com
3 STAR REVIEW
When English accountant Daniel Elliott dies in a car accident one rainy night, his widow, Grace, is overcome with grief... and panic. Daniel was controlling and their marriage loveless, but he always took care of the sheltered Grace. Or so she thought. She soon discovers Daniel kept secrets: an alias, mob ties, a list of numbers, a mysterious beach house in Florida... and a girlfriend who looks like Grace.
Swallowing her fear, she flies to Miami to claim the house Daniel left her. But the price of her curiosity is peril. Underworld figures stalk her. The other woman has left a damning trail of evidence pointing her way. And handsome, troubled FBI agent Jack West has crossed precarious paths with Grace before. He could be her savior or her damnation. All she knows for certain is that she longs to be in his arms.
With little to go on and danger at every turn, Grace must depend on Jack to help her navigate the criminal world of south Florida, and find the truth behind the Ring of Lies.
©2010 Victoria Howard (P)2013 Victoria Howard
I don't usually go for the Romance genre, but the Suspense tag caught my attention and it's good to read something different. The story starts off quite well; Grace is in the throes of shock and grief over her husbands fatal car accident, and, as the blurb states, she is finding out bit by bit that her husband was not the person she thought she knew. Seemingly abandoned by her sister and with no one to help, her thoughts turn to Jack, an American whom she met during his trip to the UK, they'd had a minor flirtation but nothing more. The real adventure begins when Grace decides to go to Florida to try to unravel a few mysteries, she seeks out and meets up again with Jack, she needs his help, fortuitously, he is an FBI agent.
I really didn't know how to rate this book as despite really enjoying the story I was too irritated by Graces' intensely annoying personality to become fully engaged. She would have a panic attack at the drop of a hat - and she kept having them! How Jack put up with her hysterics I don't know, especially when they endangered life and limb. Also, I couldn't understand her thinking processes, at one point they are hiding out in the marshes from a would be killer, Grace is being lacerated by sawgrass, a snake crawls over her leg and the 'gators are out there, so, at risk of discovery, she decides to have a panic attack. Jack manages to control her, just! Yet, in this state of mental anguish and physical discomfort she decides that sex might be a good idea - remember, the killer is still out there! Weird, plain weird, I just didn't get along with her at all. Anyway, as the mystery begins to unravel slowly, we find out who the other woman is in Daniel Elliot's life and then, finally, we discover his secret life.
Jack has a story to tell too, which lends some added interest to the tale, he has his troubles, in fact he has a whole lot more than he thought but he comes through. I would have liked a few more clues about Daniels dirty deeds a bit earlier in the story, it all came out in a bit of a rush at the end. All in all, a pleasant light story, ideal for beach reading, but silly Grace spoiled it for me.
I enjoyed Michelle Fords narration, I admire the way she portrayed Graces' hysterics without being over the top dramatic. Her skilled characterisation and gender changes are excellent and well differentiated and she sure knows how to portray a bitch! I was never in any doubt about who was who in the story. Lovely voice with good pace and timing, an all round quality recording.
This audiobook was provided by the author at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast dot com.