ADD ON GOODREADS

Expected Release Date: October 30, 2012
Publisher: Random House Publishing
Imprint: Ballantine
Author’s Website: www.shilohwalker.com/
My Source for This Book: Netgalley
Part of a Series: No
Series Best Read In Order: N/A
Steam Level: Steamy
Favorite Tropes: Secret Identity, Identity Theft
Pet Peeves: Magic Peen

Official Blurb:

Shay Morgan has stayed hidden for a long time. Living a reclusive life in Earth’s End, Alaska, she’s as far away as she can get from the trauma of her childhood and the man who hurt her long ago. But terror takes over Shay’s life yet again when an unknown stalker steals away the fragile peace she’s built for herself—targeting not only her but the one man who’s ever managed to get past the walls she’s built around herself.
 
Elliot Winter has lived through being falsely accused before—it ruined his military career. Now it’s happening all over again. And this time, his accuser is a twisted impostor who’s targeting his ex-girlfriend, Shay. Despite a fierce mutual attraction, Shay and Elliot broke up because Shay couldn’t let her guard down, couldn’t let Elliot in. But now they both need to trust each other to confront a psycho who seems to know all their secrets.

What Worked For Me:

  • loved the idea of someone stealing Shay’s life.  There’s something horribly creepy about the idea that someone could steal your identity to the point that others didn’t believe you were, well, you.
  • Elliot was a delight. Strong, stubborn, and loyal, I really enjoyed how he stuck by Shay through the whole story, even if it did take him a minute to pull his head out of his butt there in the beginning.
  • I loved the discussion about libel and slander — I’d actually highlighted “slander” the first time it was used and made a note about it on my Kindle, and had to laugh when it turned out to be intentional misuse of the word.
  • While I was a bit taken aback at first that the villain’s identity was revealed so early on in the book, I enjoyed all of the twists and turns that the story took, and how nothing was ever really as it seemed.
  • Even though I didn’t particularly care for how smoothly their sexual relationship progressed, the love scenes and chemistry between Shay and Elliot were perfectly hot, and balanced well with the rest of the story.
  • I’m such a sucker for an abused heroine, and Shay’s abuse was worse than many that I’ve come across in romance.
  • I also liked the fact that Shay’s memory was suppressed from the events that occurred in her childhood, and how that played out throughout the plotline.
  • I also enjoyed Shay’s being a famous author. I loved how that played into her desire for privacy, and even how it made it harder to prove her identity.
  • The ending was a total nail-biter, and I loved the way that the story was all tied together.

What Didn’t Work For Me:

  • There was a touch of what I like to call “magic peen” syndrome, which was a bit of a bummer.  When a heroine was as terribly abused and raped as Shay has, it just seems implausible that her first real sexual encounter with the hero will go off without a hitch. Yes, Shay and Elliot had previously been in a relationship together that lasted over a year, but they’d only progressed as far as a few small kisses. Suddenly, this woman who was so introverted and so painfully wary of physical contact is able to have wild monkey sex with no issues? It just didn’t connect well for me.
It’s been a while since I’ve read a romantic suspense, and I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed them.
With identity theft rampant these days, and much of our identities relying on the Internet, it’s not a huge stretch of the imagination to think that someone very private could, quite literally, have their lives stolen via digital manipulation.  This premise is what first attracted me to this story, but what made me stay was the execution.
I was surprised at first that the identity of the villain was revealed so early on in the novel, but I soon realized that in doing so, Ms. Walker didn’t spoil any surprise, but instead added a great deal of tension to the story. After all, can you imagine someone tearing your life apart, and your knowing who was behind it, and yet still being powerless to stop it? That’s exactly what Shay was going through.  Add to that her horrible past, and her estrangement from the one man who made her feel safe, and the tension in this book was off the charts.
While I was a little disappointed that Shay’s past didn’t affect her relationship with Elliot as much as I’d anticipated, the chemistry between them, as well as the trust that they developed for one another, made the romance quite satisfying.
Recommended for fans of abused heroines, secret identities, and of having your very identity taken away.

A very solid 4/5 Stars