Tuesday, June 21, 2011

THE RED HEART OF JADE by Marjorie M. Liu

A Dirk and Steele Novel
Publisher: Avon
Date published: February 22nd, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-06-201988-2
Paranormal Romance
Mass Market Paperback
Reviewed by Dawn
Obtained by Publisher

Dean Campbell is in assignment in Taipei, investigating a series of perplexing murders for the Dirk & Steele Agency. Dean has a special and unique gift of being able to see and sense things others cannot. Now fighting forces even he has no clue how to fight, Dean finds that the woman he thought dead is in all reality alive and in the cross hairs of a mysterious group.

Mirabelle Lee is an acclaimed archeologist and when the find of the century has her on the run with Dean, she finds herself trying to reconcile the man before her to the boy he once was. For Mirabelle is in danger-not just for her life but also for her heart. Dean is determined to have Mirabelle no matter the cost. The question is will they live long enough to have their own happily ever after?

I love Marjorie M. Liu’s work. Her stories are lyrical, entertaining and quite engrossing. In her Dirk & Steele series, she tackles some intriguing paranormal aspects, from shape shifters to psychics to magic. It’s all covered in one of these stories and I greedily grab the new books with heartfelt abandon. THE RED HEART OF JADE is about two people who thought the other was dead. For twenty years both have moved on, realizing their dreams and finding they are missing that part of themselves. A chance encounter leads to reconciliation…and loads of danger. What I love the most about this author’s work is her varied cast of characters. They are multi-dimensional, unique and quite intriguing. Each character, secondary or not, is just as rich and detailed as the main characters. You can tell this is an author who knows her characters inside and out.

Mirabelle Lee lost her childhood love, Dean, to a grisly shooting. Assuming he is dead, it’s a shock to see him in her hotel room twenty years later. Both Dean and Mirabelle find themselves drawn back to one another as they try to stay one step ahead of the mysterious bad guys and find that the connection they had years before had never died. Dean Campbell is a man with a gift and he uses it for the Dirk & Steele Agency. He met the killer once and barely got away with his life. Now seeing Mirabelle again, Dean is determined to have the love he had with her again. Can these two find a way to stop the bad guys before it’s all too late? Both of the main characters are quite delightful. I loved that Mirabelle was no slouch or wilting violet. She held her own against Dean and the bad guys. Dean is a complex wounded hero. His vulnerabilities come into play when his case gets complex and memories threaten to overwhelm him at times. Ms. Liu does a great job in creating a spectacular cast of characters to enjoy and be intrigued by. The secondary characters are quite enjoyable and kept the story flowing smoothly.

THE RED HEART OF JADE delivers a pulse pounding ride from start to finish. Once the last page was read, I was eager to see who would be the next in this exceptional series. If you are looking for a wonderful complex storyline that draws you in and leaves you breathless, then grab a Dirk & Steele Series book.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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