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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Flawless by Kimber Chin

Flawless by Kimber Chin
Publisher: Champagne Books
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full (222 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Fern

Grace Williams has a list of things she wants to do before she dies: walk a tightrope, dye her hair purple, skinny dip in the ocean, kiss the scarred stranger sent to kill her…

Yeah, Tavos Santos is a killer but f--- it if he's going to be Grace's killer. There are other relationships he'd rather have with the gloved beauty. None of them requiring knives.

It takes a killer to catch a killer. Now Tavos must decide… Is love worth killing for?

The cover got my attention, as did the blurb – a woman with a list to complete before she meets her end via the hands of the killer faces off against a man who vows never to allow anyone to harm her. But much like the image with its visual appeal, there is much more to Flawless than you see on the surface.

When the story begins, we are introduced to Grace. She’s found the man who will kill her, and facing imminent danger, decides he will be the one to remove item number four from the checklist of things to do before she dies – kiss a complete stranger. When she kisses Tavos, an attraction ignites, and she soon learns he’s not who she thought at all. By the time she’s made aware of his desire to retain her services as a media handler, he’s all but enamored, and gives his word that he’ll protect her from harm. From this point on, tensions run high. Tavos doesn’t feel worthy of someone as good and kind as Grace, while Grace insists she wants him and no one else.

Although I didn’t read the story preceding Flawless, I was able to follow and enjoy the material as it was. The premise remains true throughout, as do the characters. Tavos is an f-bomb dropping brute of a man, while Grace is a soft-spoken woman who has never been able to share intimacy with another for fear of causing them harm. Each carry scars, both physically and emotionally, and seem to gravitate toward one another because of them. Their relationship is anything but conventional, and the first half of the story is used to crank up the heat while teasing the audience with what’s to come.

On the flipside of the plot, the blurb doesn’t reveal the person who wants Grace dead, so I can’t share the information. Suffice it to say, the revelation is brutal, and contributed to the dark undertone of the work. When the clock starts ticking, it adds an entirely new level of suspense, and readers will not be able to put the story down until they learn what happens next.

There were a few instances when awkward dialogue drew me out of the story and forced me re-read for clarity, but once I got my bearings, I was back in the center of the action. Kimber Chin has a wonderful voice and manages to breathe life into her characters from the moment they arrive on the page. Flawless is the first story I’ve enjoyed by this wonderful author, but it won’t be the last. Her style is unique and memorable, so much so that I’ve placed the first story, Invisible, onto my TBR list.

Fans of a steamy romance, you’ll find exactly what your searching for here. If you’ve not read anything by Kimber Chin, this is a fantastic way to start.