Review: Crossing the Line
Crossing the Line by Sherri Hayes
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Replacing a much beloved deceased wife is an uphill battle. It is one which Megan Carson is determined to do even if it breaks her heart. Since she started living at Paul Daniels' home and taking care of his daughter, Chloe, she's realized her past mistakes. The guys she's dated and fallen for so quickly were worthless. Watching how Paul takes care of his family and especially his daughter, Megan knows this is the right kind of guy for her.
Paul misses his wife and wrestles with guilt over her death. While he didn't directly cause it, he feels responsible. This is the kind of guy Paul is - the white knight trying to protect everyone. He is the one who believes he can prevent all the bad things from happening. This is what makes him such a great detective.
The characters in this story are easy to understand. They can easily be identified as a reader's friend or family member. Megan and Paul are both people who are relatable and all too human. This is what makes Ms. Hayes' contemporary romances so good. She captures a realistic view of people - the good, bad and ugly - then creates a lovely story about them. Megan and Paul's romance is a good view of what could happen to a widower not ready for a new relationship. Added to the mix is the age difference which makes Paul feel as if he is taking advantage of Megan. The fact Megan is his daughter's nanny just adds to the torridness of the situation and constantly threatens to unravel his tightly controlled desires.
This story is a sweet romance. To add some layer and complexity to the world building, the suspense part is nicely done. Hunting a serial killer which impacts Paul's life is not unexpected yet blended into the plot quite well. What bothered me about this story isn't the plot or the romance. It's Megan's single mindedness to have Paul as her own. If this where flipped around with Megan as the widow with a child and Paul wooing her, I can't help but think Paul would be labeled as an domineering stalker. Personally, I call Megan a cock tease in need of a good spanking. Maybe a daily spanking will help adjust her slutty behaviour. Ms. Hayes walks a fine line for Megan to come across as too pushy versus a determined young lady in love. In the end, it all works out.
Ms. Hayes' forte in writing is how well she shows her character's motivation and feelings. There is never a question as to what Megan is feeling or how Paul feels about the situation. Everything is transparent so the reader doesn't have to guess or fume about contrived miscommunications. This makes the story more enjoyable and fast read. This sweet contemporary romance is recommended to readers who love happily ever afters.
*provided by NetGalley
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