The publisher provided me with a copy of this book to review via NetGalley.
Last Chance Reunion puts two books into one with Texas Cold Case and Texas Lost And Found together in a single volume. However I will be breaking this review up into two parts to reflect on each story individually. These two stories also bring to an end the Chance Texas series, though they can be read as standalone novels.
Texas Cold Case
This book starts off pretty solidly introducing the characters, giving a bit of background and a small bit of action as well. I can’t say that it stood out an an amazing or uniquely individual start but it did set the stage for many of the events later on in the book.
The writing in this book seemed a bit off to me, though I can’t say what about it exactly made me feel this way. Clearly things were happening, but I didn’t feel that draw or pull into the story to want to learn out how and why those things were happening and who was behind it. Perhaps some of it was not having a connection with some of the characters but I feel that the writing style also played a part.
Lacie and Colt have a past together, which happens in a lot of romantic suspense books but wasn’t necessarily a put off, and what they had back then is quite quickly rekindled. But there is an investigation to take care of, the one she is helping Chance with, and of course her stepfather is in the way as well, and it’s clear he doesn’t want Lacie digging up the past. Yet these two are determined to find out the truths and keep investigating even as things turn more and more dangerous.
Digging up the past proves to be especially dangerous as near the middle of the story there are several consecutive attempts on Lacie and Colt’s lives. It was a nice little bit of action among all of the information gathering they had been doing up to this point. A bit of the past had been revealed, some about Lacie’s father, some about her own past but a lot of it centered about Colt’s parents.
The suspense part of the book wasn’t that solid, though perhaps others would find it enough for the story. I pretty much had everything figured out once a few of the characters were introduced. The ending was fairly typical of a romance novel and opened some things up for the next book in the series.
This book was a bit on the short side and didn’t exactly pull me in fully to the story. Even so I did enjoy it a bit, for the was a quick read.
Texas Lost And Found
This book started off with a bit more interest to it, with events happening right after the ending of the previous book. A wildfire scene introducing the female lead character Nina Martinez, who is a hotshot fire fighter, ends up having to move quickly before the flames surround her completely and then witnesses a murder before the flames finally catch up with her. Of course after reading the last book I felt like I instantly knew who Nina was but it was a great way to thrust her into the story.
Nina is a person who keeps her past hidden, partially because she is afraid of what will happen when others find out and also because of the bad memories attached with her early childhood. Some things are more clear than others, for example she absolutely hates Texas but for a long time won’t say what that is, but it’s clear it has something to do with her past. The fact that she has even the tiniest of memories of her old past was a nice little addition to the story especially admit the fire scene and the surprise that came along with it.
Nina and her coworker josh are thrust together when she is injured on the job and he finds and rescues her. But since she witnessed a murder she is far from safe. Josh is a strong man who is protective of others by nature and has feelings for Nina even before these events unfold. Knowing that she is not safe due to witnessing that murder Josh takes it upon himself to try to keep Nina safe. Along the way they each reveal a bit of their pasts to each other, though Josh more so than Nina. Nina is still hesitant to talk about her past, though only some of that is because she doesn’t remember all of it, and because she isn’t sure whether it’s safe to trust Josh.
I was curious to see who the murderer turned out to be, especially since there was a connection to the murder and the Chance Country sheriff’s department, though not in a suspect way, it was the deputy sheriff’s wife who was killed while her husband was away at trial. I also wondered about the connections that the murderer had and if it had anything to do with the gun runners in the previous book.
It takes Nina a while to open up about her past, in fact it takes a bit of prodding from josh to make her do so. She’s obviously good at hiding the truth, burying who she truly is deep in side and keeping everyone at a distance means she doesn’t need to make or break any relationships, be it friends or otherwise, and worry about them finding out about her. I was interested to find out why that was, I figured part of it had to do with her being kidnapped as a young child but I also figured there would be something else, some reason why her past has been so hidden and why she is so reluctant to talk about it.
With a bit of action and the mystery being solved at the end along brought everything together finally. Cami aka Nina is back with her family and she has Josh at her side. I think the ending will be especially appealing to those who have read the rest of the series, but it is also good for those who have only read a book or two as well.
Overall thoughts: While both of these books were very short, combined they were about 300 pages long, they took me quite a while to get thought. Part of that was that I found it all too easy to put the book down, even during parts were I was fairly interested, and then it took a lot for me to pick it back up again. Now don’t get me wrong I was enjoying the books to a certain extent but they just lacked that extra bit of pull to full draw me in and make me want to sit and read them straight through without taking any breaks. I think part of it was that I didn’t feel that deep connection to any of the characters, yes I was somewhat interested in what was happening to them, their pasts and who they were, but not enough to become truly invested in them or their stories.
For those who have read the other books in this series and are looking forward to finding out what happens next then these books will do a great job of bringing everything to an end. Fans of romance may find these books appealing, especially those looking for something on the short side to read. I may go back and read the previous two books in the series at some time just to find out more about the other character and see what other events had happened that lead up to these books.