Rating: 4 1/2 stars
“Troublemaker” by Linda Howard is another well-written romantic suspense by someone who knows how to write and keep the action (and romantic tension) moving. In “Troublemaker,” the action begins in the first chapter when after an afternoon on his boat, Morgan Yancy, a paramilitary operative is shot and almost killed. And the shooting is intentional and in front of his home.
The problem is that neither he nor his supervisors know why someone wanted to kill him. So while he is in a weakened state, they need a safe place to keep him. That safe place will also double as a trap to find out who wants to kill him and why. His boss, a workaholic, decides to play a kind of joke and have Yancy stay with his former stepsister. Relations between the two of them went from mutual strong dislike to a mutual hate-hate feeling.
Bo Maran has finally gotten her life together. She has a dog she adores, a job she likes, and she lives in a town that feels like home. When an injured soldier-type shows up at her doorstep unannounced and almost fainting, she has no choice but to take him in. One thing leads to another, and she’s deeply involved in helping Yancy recover. From a distance.
But darn it if Yancy isn’t a lovable kind of guy. He wins over the dog, the townspeople, and finally Bo. But she can sense that he’s hiding something, and when she finds out what it is, she’s not happy.
This is an action-packed story that will have Howard fans and those who like romantic suspense turning the pages quickly. The added attraction is the dog, Tricks. Dog lovers will eat up this adorable, intelligent character. Tricks is much more likable than many of the other characters in the story, and adds a lot of charm to the tail, er, tale.
Bring “Troublemaker” to the beach or on vacation. It will be the best “trouble” you’ve ever had.
Please note: This review is based on the final hardcover book provided by the publisher, William Morrow, for review purposes.