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Chasing Fire Hardcover – April 12, 2011
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. This searing stand-alone from bestseller Roberts (The Search) celebrates the smoke jumpers of Missoula, Mont., who routinely risk life and limb to beat down raging forest fires. As close knit as any military combat unit, the "Zulies" include veteran Rowan Tripp, haunted by the loss of Jim Brayner, her onetime jump partner who was killed the previous season in a fall, and rookie Gulliver Curry, who soon earns the nickname "Fast Feet" for his speed and prowess. Threatening trouble is cook Dolly Brakeman, Jim's girlfriend, who blames Rowan for his death—and whose new baby may well be Jim's. Rowan and Gull grow closer as the team battles fires from Montana and Idaho to California and Alaska. Meanwhile, the Zulies are plagued by vandalism and sabotage as well as a killer with arson among his crimes. Roberts fans can expect another bestseller. (Apr.)
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About the Author
Nora Roberts is the number-one New York Times-bestselling author of more than 190 novels, including The Search, Black Hills, Tribute,, and High Noon. She is also the author of the bestselling futuristic suspense series written under the pen name J. D. Robb. There are more than 400 million copies of her books in print.
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Top customer reviews
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This book, in a similar vein, is obviously heavily researched, this time in the topic of "Smoke Jumping." Much like The Search, there is a huge amount of information dump on the reader concerning the professional career of the main female character. The training, the equipment, fire after fire in various locations where they do things like stamp out spots and fight the head. I don't know about everybody else, but for me it made the book overly long and in parts tedious. For me the difference between this book and The Search is I like dogs. The subject matter here didn't interest me nearly as much. There were many points were I was just like "Yeah, Yeah jump out of the plane, more burning trees" click click click on the eReader next page button trying to get past it. Once, I almost missed a near death experience because of it.
The good part. I really liked both the main characters in this novel, in spite of their really odd names. Rowan is smart, independent and strong and she isn't afraid to be in charge. Gull is tough, intelligent, well read and between the two there is a banter of word play that is quite amusing to read. I wish that would could have had about 50% less forest fire education and much more relationship between the two because they were just the type of characters that you like to read. There is also a nice secondary romance in the book between Rowan's father and a local school Principal.
Since this is Nora Robert's annual "Suspense" novel there is a murder mystery involved in the story with the attendant danger not only to Rowan, but also to all of her co-workers. I felt that the resolution of mystery was fairly mundane given that nearly every other potential suspect was eliminated throughout the book by various characters standing around saying: "Wow! I really don't think he/she could have done that because ......."
So overall, more than a little draggy in places but certainly worth the time spent reading.
It seems like we have another Kindle Price controversy brewing so I'll just add my 2cents. Kindle.Price.Way.Too.High.
The heroine, Rowan, was all casual bravado, fierce temper, and super-physical-perfection without having any sympathetic qualities to her at all. Whether she was puffing on a cigar, drinking the entire flight crew under the table, or kicking the crap out of an offensive bar patron (all the while, we are told, smelling like peaches and sunshine rather than stale cigars and tequila), I found her thoroughly annoying rather than strong and capable which I have to believe is what the author was going for.
The hero, Gull, was the usual charming, equality-minded, sexy, deeply caring hero Roberts writes so well.
The subject matter -- fire-jumping -- was obviously researched thoroughly and then used to bludgeon the reader into a coma between romance plot developments. There was some small relief from a romance between Rowan's father and a local woman, but beyond that the firefighting descriptions just took over and obliterated everything else. Add to this unbalanced mix a murder mystery with a bad guy I saw coming from about page 10, and things just weren't working well at all.
Roberts evidently researched fire-jumping to the nth degree and then put everything she ever noted down into the book. But when that subject matter has the reader skipping over entire pages, multiple times, to get back to the boy-meets-girl and who's-the-murderer? storyline (because this is supposed to be a romance novel, right?) something is way out of whack.
I know she can do so much better. Two stars.
Most recent customer reviews
It was very hard to put the book down.