Review: In Too Deep (Due South #1) by Tracey Alvarez

In too DeepTitle: In Too Deep
Author: Tracey Alvarez
Series: Due South #1
Rating: 4 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
She vowed never to return.

To save her brother from financial ruin, Piper Harland must do the one thing she swore she’d never do—return to the tiny island home-town where Ryan “West” Westlake crushed her heart. Piper is tough, resilient and a little wild—much like the remote and beautiful Stewart Island where she grew up. As a cop who’s part of the elite New Zealand Police National Dive Squad, bringing the dead back to their families still doesn’t stop the guilt she feels over her father’s drowning death. Now nine years later she’s obligated to return to a hostile community as the outsider, and forced to work with the man who was once her best friend and first lover.

She’s a risk he can’t take.

West is an Island man, through and through. As owner of the local pub, he lives and breathes the local community, and sure as hell can’t imagine living anywhere else. But most of all he refuses to ever fall for a woman like his flighty mother. He lost Piper once to give her the chance to fulfil her dreams of becoming a cop. But now she’s back for an unexpected six week visit to help her brother—his best mate. Maybe West wants her a little bit, maybe he can’t resist the temptation to tease and touch her, but can he fall in love with such a flight risk?

Saying goodbye the second time might just destroy them both.

My Review:
I really enjoyed this book and I’m definitely going to continue the series.

I loved the writing, strong characterization and worldbuilding. Initially, I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy a small, rural community setting but the author wrote it so well that you couldn’t help falling in love with the place.

Piper and Ryan (West) have spent years dodging each other and as the story develops we being to understand why. The author skillfully builds longing and angst and I really felt the emotions of both characters. I felt it dragged a little in the middle and I thought I’d die if they didn’t get their act together.

Both characters develop and grow throughout the story and eventually learn to let each other in. It was really sweet and romantic (and there’s plenty of steamy action too!)

The ending was a bit too cheesy for me (though I’m not usually opposed to a bit of cheese)and the only other thing I didn’t like was the slight change in perspective and tense on occasion which was jarring. Minor complaints though. For a debut novel, I think it’s very accomplished, and I look forward to reading more from the author.

Thanks to Tracey Alvarez for running a promo on this book which enabled me to pick up a copy for free. I’ve already downloaded the second installment and I look forward to getting stuck in.

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