Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Julie's Review: The Mask

 photo The Mask_zpsikisdigd.jpg

Author: Taylor Stevens
Series: Vanessa Michael Monroe #5
Publication Date: June 30, 2015
Publisher: Crown
Pages: 352
Obtained: Amazon Vine
Genre:  Thriller, Suspense
Rating: 4.5/5
Bottom Line: Thrilling and exciting entry into one of my favorite thriller/mystery series
Grab, Just get it at the library, or Remove from your TBR list? Grab!
Summary: Vanessa Michael Munroe, chameleon and information hunter, has a reputation for getting things done: dangerous and not quite legal things, in some of the world’s deadliest places. Still healing from a brutal attack that left her near death, Munroe joins her lover, Miles Bradford, in Japan where he’s working as a security consultant protecting high-value technology from industrial espionage. In the domesticity of their routine Munroe finds long sought-after peace—until Bradford is arrested for murder. She will soon discover how far she’ll go to save him from twenty years in locked-up isolation; how many laws she’ll break when the truth seems worse than his lies; and who to trust and who she’ll kill. Because she’s a strategist and hunter with a predator’s instincts, and the man she loves has just stabbed her in the back. ~taylorstevensauthor.com  

Review: The Mask is one of those books where I had to trust the author and it's a good thing I've read all the other books in this series to know I can trust her. I did seriously wonder what kind of ride she was going to take me on and how Michael was going to come out of this on the other side. I was worried that the only thing keeping Michael tethered was going to be ripped away from her. This trip to Japan to see Bradford was supposed to be a healing trip for her. Well, how much fun would that be to read about and write? Probably not very for this character. Michael needs action, she needs to feel purposeful. I doubt she's ever had a proper vacation.

Needless to say, Michael's skills are called into action quickly when Miles gets arrested for murder. She knows he didn't do it but he also wasn't fully honest with her. This is when she has to start putting together the puzzle pieces.

Michael is also operating in a culture that she doesn't quite understand but that she has to learn quickly to adapt to. She has to learn how to function and command respect from men in the office. She needs someone to help her adapt and to also figure out the pieces of the puzzle that she can't do on her own. She needs someone to team with this time. This time she can't do it on her own.

Ms. Stevens always does a great job of making two plot lines intersect and The Mask is no different. I never doubt the path or paths she's going to take us on. They are almost always a wild ride, which is what keeps this reader coming back. Plus I happen to think Vanessa Michael Munroe is one of the most interesting and complex characters I've ever read.

If you've never read any of Ms. Stevens books and you are a fan of thrillers plus excellent characters, then you need to pick up this series.


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