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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Girl's Best Friend by Pat Dale

A Girl's Best Friend by Pat Dale
Publisher: Whimsical Publications
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Full Length (270 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 Books
Reviewed by Camellia

When Laura Margolin, TV jewelry shopping’s latest diva, crosses paths with super spy Hayward Lazarus, she has no idea that before their saga is done, her career will be toast, her hero will have died heroically—and they’ll live happily ever after.

The copper-haired beauty, up to her azure eyeballs in the world of jewelry marketing, meets Lazarus on her flight to Amsterdam to introduce herself to the Dutch magnate who’s just purchased Sparkles Inc. As a spy, Laz’s task is to cut off insurgent funding, but his covert mission is aborted before it begins and he runs for his life. While he hides, determined to come out of this alive, Laura goes happily about her business in the sunny Dutch city until her new boss puts a move on her that has her running too.

Glamour gal and slippery spy ratchet between ecstasy and despair as they try to unravel separate webs of deception; webs that weave into a wild and crazy patchwork. They want to be together but the fates seem to have other plans.

Adrenaline-pumping, breath-holding action along with rather graphic descriptions of the continental or maybe cosmopolitan view of sex keep the reader’s heart rate accelerated and tension high as Laura Margolin and Hayward Lazarus finagle their way through some terrifying situations.

Lazarus’ covert career has suited him well. The fact that no exit strategy exists has never been a problem until now. Someone really wants him dead and he finds he really wants to live. How he plots and works to stay alive is mesmerizing.

Laura, the new liaison for Sparkles jewelry now a part of Ver Meer jewels of Amsterdam, hates flying but must fly from Florida to Holland often. The “oh-so-good-looking" Lazarus talks her through her first trip and seemly cures her fears. As their lives become entangled scary complications pile up, but love wiggles its way in among the secret plotting against Lazarus and the infuriating actions of Laura’s bosses.

Laura escaped the provincial life of her Nebraska home and made a success of fitting into the cosmopolitan world she wants to be a part of — at least she thought she wanted to be a part of it. Rather disenchanted with men, Laura is not quite sure why she keeps thinking of Lazarus. In time, she soars to ecstasy with him then crashes in despair at the news of his death. Ah, don’t miss the significance of his name.

The cat and mouse games, the unceasing surveillance, the offer of ten million dollars to do one job, and the narrow escapes make A Girl's Best Friend a page-turner, but the love that bonds kindred souls is woven like a golden thread through this dark tapestry of conflicts — beautiful.

The secondary characters play important roles, some that horrify, and others that make you mad enough to fight. Of course, some like Sophie and Jezebel are special in a very different way.

Pat Dale’s writing style is captivating. It glides along with some telling rather than showing but this doesn’t detract from the emotionally, sexually charged happenings. Good suspense!