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Burn: A Novel Mass Market Paperback – August 31, 2010

3.2 out of 5 stars 183 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When Jenner Redwine wins the lottery, she finds herself alienated from everything she knew, and a misfit in the world of the ultra-wealthy. When she agrees to go on a charity cruise with her best friend Syd Hazlett, she thinks it'll be the perfect escape: two weeks of spa treatments and art auctions. Onboard the Silver Mist, however, Syd is kidnapped by a mysterious group, and her only shot at safety is going along with the plan of her mysterious captor Cael Traylor. Finding herself increasingly uncertain over who the bad guys really are-and what exactly is happening onboard-Jenner begins falling for her kidnapper. Veteran author Howard operates well within her comfort zone, charging this romantic thriller with light erotic flourishes, a sympathetic fish-out-of-water heroine and an archetypal hero-gruff, assertive and dangerously masculine-all of which fans will expect and appreciate. Though Howard goes out of her way early on to make Cael unthreatening, she maintains enough tension between captor and captive to make this an enjoyable but unexceptional caper.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

“Those who love Howard’s brand of quirky humor combined with real chills are in for a special treat. Settle back and savor this one.”
—Romantic Times (Top Pick)

“[Linda] Howard’s newest read is certainly a hot one.”
—Entertainment Weekly
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reprint edition (August 31, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345486579
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345486578
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (183 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #801,005 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm a long-time Linda Howard fan, and was highly anticipating this book, but ended up disappointed. Being Linda Howard, it's still better than most of the romances out there, but it's just not up to her usual caliber. The characters were intriguing and hilarious, the plot should've been fast-paced and interesting, but instead it was just kind of boring.

Ms. Howard's main problem with this book is that the story-telling switches so often from character to character that the reader becomes omniscient. You know exactly what Cael and his team are doing on the boat, you know where his intentions lie, and why he kidnapped Jenner. But you get to read page after page (after page after page) of Jenner musing over just these questions. Unfortunately, with no mystery to the reader concerning his actions, being forced to read on and on about her trying to figure it out becomes tedious and boring with much skimming involved.

Likewise, it's very obvious, very quickly exactly what the villain of the piece is up to and why he plans what he plans because we read from his viewpoint so often. But having to go over and over (and over and over) Cael's musings to figure out the nefarious plot is equally frustrating. Ms. Howard could have easily created an extremely suspenseful and fascinating novel had she limited her character viewpoints only to Syd and Jenner. She could've expanded to include Cael and his team once we knew what role he played, and kept a couple of short blips from the bad guy without revealing anything but sinister design. But instead we're subjected to long and ultimately pointless descriptions of ghosting and surveilling Larkin, while the main characters struggle to understand what's happening around them. There's just NO MYSTERY.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What has happened to Linda Howard? I thoroughly enjoyed "Son of the Morning," "Shades of Twilight," "Dream Man," "After the Night," etc but her recent ones have been real clunkers. This novel gives you no real relationships except that of the main two characters and they interact with one another in the same exact manner throughout the book, the sex scenes are boring and then magically they are in love forever. I sorely miss the old Linda Howard. Can someone tell her we want her back?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've been reading Linda Howard's books since 1984 and I think I have copies of everything she ever wrote including some of her truly dreadful early work before she hit her groove that zipped her to the top of my favorite authors list for more than two decades. Everyone agrees that Linda Howard's claim to fame are her sexy delicious heroes. She writes wonderful sexy stories about cops, mercenaries, corporate sharks, cowboys and service men in the regular military. I loved her medieval hero in the time travel she wrote. And I thought the hit man in Death Angel was ok despite a *weird* deus ex machina scene half way through.

Unfortunately, I can't tolerate Linda Howard's spy guys. I dislike them so much that each time I read one of her spy guy books, I am motivated to write a negative review so that maybe her publisher can influence her to stop writing these clunkers! Linda Howard just can not make these spy guy heroes sympathetic. And her spy guy plots are just hokey and full of holes.

I can overlook an implausible plot if the hero and heroine are likeable but every one of her spy guy heroes are unfeeling, righteous, macho, sadistic jerks and the hero in BURN, Cael Traylor, lives down to all those adjectives. I was so repulsed by him from the very first chapter that I never could suspend disbelief sufficiently to fall for the incoherent plot. In fact, I put Burn down for 3 days before picking it back up again. I was close to deciding not to finish it. It's really too bad because the heroine Jenner Redwine started out great before she got dumbed down and by the jerk. Someone in another review wrote that she became boring. That's right, she did.
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Format: Hardcover
Linda Howard is one of my favorite authors. I love her stuff. Except for this one. The plot makes little sense. The villain's of the piece motivation just doesn't cut it which makes the whole storyline fall apart for me. How and why is having cancer sufficient motivation to blow up an entire boat? The cruise is populated by rich people, true, but they're all donating heavily to a charitable cause so how and why are they useless parasites? Jenner's father and best friend are heavily written about, then just disappear one third of the way through never to be heard from again. The same with Al, her accountant who's supposed to one of Jenner's two best friends. Lots of introduction with little follow through. I wait impatiently for each of Linda Howard's releases but found Burn to be very disappointing.
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Format: Hardcover
I thought I'd try Burn even though I put down the last few Linda Howard novels I started midway through because they were so unengaging. I actually finished this novel, but by the end I was angry at it. The story itself was okay, but the hero had no personality whatsoever and the heroine had no redeeming features.

First of all, she starts out the novel working at a meat packing plant, where she apparently has utterly no ambitions other than to go out drinking at night. I felt like Howard was trying to create an average-yet-poor person, but she made Jenner so stupid I was kind of insulted. Jenner has no plans, no interests in anything, few friends, no bank account, and no general knowledge. There are people with crappy jobs and no plans to change them, but everyone has interests, or wishes.

Second, Jenner wins a huge lottery jackpot. . . and whines about taxes. Repeatedly. Throughout the book. She likes Marines, she roots for the good guys, but shows no insight about what pays for Marines. She ends up with over a hundred million dollars that she won randomly by chance, and we can't just read a romance novel without this whining about taxes? Worse, when Jenner whines, it seems embarrassingly like Howard's whining bleeding through. I'm not reading this book to get an idea of Linda Howard's sociopolitical views. . . in part because they seem so bitter.

Third, Jenner--despite showing no particular skill at anything--manages to take that hundred million dollars and multiply it with her financial skills. This has the effect of creating a weird feeling of moral capitalism in the book--Jenner is good because she can make money. She can make money because she is good. Her goodness can be seen by looking at her money skills.
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