I wish all self-published books were as well done as Can’t Bear to Hide. Not only was the editing perfect but the story, the writing, the romance and car chases and action all came together for a wonderful reading experience. I practically devoured the book in one sitting.
First person point of view is hard to pull off sometimes but I loved reading the story from Raine’s perspective. She was so fascinating! I mean, she makes these great pop culture references that sometime falls flat with other characters in the book and she has to deal with a dud audience, and other times it works and I could share in her giggles and humor. Then, when she deals with stress, I could relate to her grandiose fantasies on how to finagle a way out, but understood her acceptance of the restrictions of reality. Even with reality, she got a few good zings on the bad guys. I got the biggest kick out of the paper towel dispenser reference. Even the Top Gun scene was really cool. And all of this is explored through her internal dialogue. The heroine’s mind is such a trip. The one thing that stood out is her feelings for the hero, Dax. The words the author used to describe her love for him fits the definition of romance to a T. I could feel her love, her devotion, her belief that she’s the luckiest woman on the face of the earth because Dax loved her. And because of that certainty, she had the strength and determination to fight the bad guys every step of the way.
This story focused on Raine but Dax is no slouch. Even though I never got into his head, the author used his dialogue and actions to get across any point that needed to be made. He is her mate and even when she comes clean about a secret that she’d been keeping from him, his reaction was everything I could have wished. No silly over the top reaction but an acceptance that she’s human, that everyone makes mistakes and it was the past. How he chose to express that to her proved to me his devotion and that was enough to make me swoon. Dax is an awesome hero.
As for the conflict, it was very much external. There was so much going on and that sleazy weasel, in my estimation, should have been punished. I was not happy that it looked and sounded like he was going to get away with being such a jerk but I guess there were bigger, meaner and nastier thugs to deal with. One of the pieces of trash was from the heroine’s past. I know that the author sort of addressed the issue a bit; werebear marriages are not the same as human marriages, but I kind of hoped there would have been a more permanent solution to her ex. Call me bloodthirsty but after finding out what he did to her? She and Dax showed remarkable restraint. I wanted her to at LEAST get an official human divorce. Raine might, only the author knows, but that bugged me that it wasn’t done in this story. Then again there was Gregs – talk about a twist! I give Ms. Red two thumbs up for what she did with him. I count it as another high point in the book.
I’m recent to fandom of Ms. Red, but every book I’ve read of hers leaves me wanting more and more. I feel like a true romance junkie, and Can’t Bear to Hide was my latest fix. I can’t get enough of her were-bears, the world she’s created and the romances that occur within it. Paranormal romance readers can’t go wrong when reading stories by Ms. Red. They’re that good.
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