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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Static Resistance and Rose by Lee Roland

Static Resistance and Rose by Lee Roland
Publisher: Highland Press Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (234 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3.5 books
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Master Electrician Rose Norris is wiring a new hotel on a Florida beach when a lethal, high voltage accident takes her down. Her friend Jimmy revives her with CPR, but she quickly discovers his friendship might be deadlier than the accident-which wasn't an accident at all.

Jimmy's dark secret has brought gangsters from Miami seeking retribution for his transgressions in their world. Rose's friendship with Jimmy forces her to play their game, but the mobsters find that tough, resourceful Rose doesn't make a good pawn.

Sexy construction boss Ryan Vernon becomes Rose's partner, and they must fight their way through a series of complex lies to a place where friends are suspects and enemies are . . . well, so attractive that Rose forgets 'crossed wires' are big trouble.

Although Ryan stands by her side, exotic Leandro, the man with the face of an angel and the soul of a killer, may steal her heart.

Two very different men are competing for Rose’s heart.

Rose works in a male dominated profession. Sometimes the men respect her work as an electrician and sometimes they don’t. Rose is tough and good at her job. She can usually handle the “pranks” that he coworkers play. However, when she is nearly killed on the job, she begins to wonder who would hate her so much they’d make an attempt on her life. As the police investigate the attempted murder, more problems on the construction site are unearthed. Who would sabotage the construction of the hotel? Was Rose the sole target of the “accident” or is something more sinister at the root of it all?

Ryan Vernon, owner of the construction company Rose works for, steps in to ensure that the hotel is completed on time. From the moment he sees Rose, he knows he wants to be a part of her life. Rose can’t deny that Ryan is handsome and certainly a good man. However, she isn’t sure she’s ready for a serious commitment. As Rose and Ryan continue their investigation, it becomes clear that the mob is somehow involved in not only the attempt on Rose’s life, but also the other problems plaguing the construction site. Even more disturbing, Rose’s friend Jimmy has a dark secret that is somehow the cause of it all. Just as Rose is starting to feel comfortable with Ryan, Leandro enters the picture. Leandro has the sexy appeal of a bad boy, but he is connected with the mob and extremely dangerous. Still Rose can’t deny her attraction to him. Which man will she choose?

Rose is an intriguing heroine. On the surface she is a strong and confident woman. Working in a position usually reserved for men, she’s had to work extra hard to prove that she deserves the respect of her coworkers. Sometimes hard work isn’t enough, and Rose suffers insults and harmful pranks at the hands of the men she works with. However, Rose takes it all in stride. I loved that she didn’t stoop to the level of revenge games. Instead, she continues to strive to be the best electrician she can be.

While Rose’s strength and confidence are admirable, I liked that Rose also had a softer side. Her life has been rather lonely. Her father was an electrician and Rose spent her life following him around various construction sites. Consequently, she hasn’t had very much experience with long term relationships of any kind. She’s confident in her abilities as an electrician, but could she ever be part of a family? Rose’s doubts are the chink in her armor, but her fears make her a very real and relatable heroine.

Ryan is the perfect hero for Rose. He’s strong, handsome, and patient. He makes it clear from the beginning that he wants to be a part of Rose’s life. He didn’t play games, and I found his honesty to be very refreshing. As much as he desired Rose, Ryan didn’t pressure her into making a choice she wasn’t ready to make. He was even willing to let her explore her feelings for Leandro. Some might see this as a weakness, but I think this is a demonstration of Ryan’s strength and a clear indicator of how much he truly cares for Rose.

Leandro proved to be an interesting villain. At first he seemed like nothing more than a mercenary. Rose took one look at him and knew he was a man who wouldn’t hesitate to kill. I was pleased to discover that there was much more to Leandro. Underneath the handsome exterior is a man with a wounded soul shaped by tragedy.

I did have one issue with the story. Rose and Ryan clearly have a connection, and even though she’s a little afraid of commitment, she knows that Ryan is a wonderful man and would love her for the rest of her life. However, her attraction to Leandro is just as real. I won’t spoil the story by revealing who she chooses in the end, but Rose seems to talk herself into her attraction to Ryan. At times it seems she is with him only because she knows it is the sensible thing to do rather than because she had deep feelings for him. I found this a bit unfair to Ryan, who is a great hero and deserves someone to love him for more than the fact that he is the “good” guy.

Despite this issue, I enjoyed reading Static Resistance and Rose. I recommend it to anyone looking for a suspense filled with complex characters.