Saints of Denver (3), Riveted, Crownover, Jay
I’ve read quite a few of Jay’s novels now, some I love, some are still good but not quite such a hit with me. Riveted falls into that category, and its really difficult to pinpoint why.
I love the characters, the settings, the realism of it all. There is irrational bigotry around, those who see skin colour and not the person, and when that happens to Dash and his brother it felt so very genuine. I’m naturally fairly dark-skinned/tanned looking, though English through and through, and used to get bullied at school back in the sixties for my appearance, so I understand that affects people though I only had a small taster.
Its sad but a fact of life, people that are in any way different get picked on by ignorant bullies.
Poor Dash, what a tragic background and I kind of understood why he joined the Army as a teen, and how the awful things he’s seen since affected him. I still wasn’t quite convinced though of his reasons for a) not going home and b) feeling he wasn’t good enough for Dixie, that something would happen to her. Thank goodness that girl has some real sticking power!
Dixie – well, we need more like her in the world. she’s everyone’s friend, works hard, always has something nice to say, and always there ready to help.
She’s like a Pollyanna type but without the cringing sweetness, there’s something real about Dixie, something that makes her beautiful in spirit without feeling sickly sweet.
The sexual tension between those two – off the wall, and wow when Dixie finally wore him down – or maybe it was just that he stopped telling himself he wasn’t good enough, sparks flew.
They’re perfect together, but that HEA has a few barriers on the way.
There’s some terrific secondary characters here too, who really caught my eye. Its a lovely story, a beautiful romance, with genuine feeling people and places. I could feel the sunshine, and here on a murky February morning in the UK just remembering that feel cheers me up.
Given all that why haven’t I gone for five stars? Well, its hard to say, I did enjoy it but…sometimes I found myself drifting, not concentrating on the story, and other times I just had to put it aside for a while, and that doesn’t happen with five star reads. I just can’t work out exactly why though.
It’s clear its a five star read for many and that’s great to see. I just wish it had been that for me, but it fell marginally short.
Stars: Four and a half, just short of the magic five, maybe if I’d read all the former stories it would have hit that? Who knows?
ARC supplied for review purposes by Netgalley and Publishers