What to do, what to do. If you're a relative newbie to category romances,
you might enjoy Every Breath You Take. If you're a veteran reader,
however, you'll likely be bored silly by the standard plot, standard
characters, and standard romance. Yes, it's all been done before, and this
reader was all too aware of the fact.
Natalie Buchanan returns home one night to find that her home has been
ransacked. She calls 911, only to be further unnerved when the officer
responding to the call turns out to be Miller Brannigan, her onetime lover.
Seems Miller and Natalie pledged their undying love ten years ago, rich
princess and kid from the down side of town, and then Natalie walked out on
him. Miller and Natalie have never gotten over each other, even though
they were only 18 at the time of the breakup.
Okay, hold it. Right away this sounded pretty implausible. These two
broke up as teenagers, and for the last ten years they've been pining for
each other? How emotionally mature are most 18 year olds, anyway?
Wouldn't they have done a bit of growing up in the last ten years, at least
enough to find someone else? Talk about a case of arrested development.
Anyway, Miller is convinced that someone is out to get Natalie, probably
someone she knows. Natalie doesn't know what to think. It's hard when
she's mostly thinking about Miller.
Miller thinks about Natalie, too. He can't get her off his mind, even
though he blames her for the breakup (well, she did walk out on him).
However, even though it's been ten years, the two of them don't talk about
it. The Big Misunderstanding gets dragged out until the last third of the
book, and Natalie's explanation when she does come clean sounds like she
made it up on the spot. I kept expecting Miller to laugh in disbelief.
Natalie is the standard poor-little-rich-girl whose mother died when she
was young and whose father is a cold-hearted SOB. Miller is the ubiquitous
foster-home child who grew up and made good. If I hadn't read this
scenario at least a hundred times in the past, I might have been more
entertained. As it was, they left me flat.
The only bright spot in the plot was the eventual resolution of the mystery
-- it was tricky and fun, if a bit obvious by then.
However, a bit of inventiveness at the end couldn't make up for the
cardboard characters and predictable (not to mention irritating) Big
Misunderstanding. Suzanne McMinn has offered readers much more
entertaining reads than this in the past, and here's hoping she returns to
her former style soon. Every Breath You Take doesn't adequately
display her talent.