Review: Pursuit by Elizabeth Jennings

Posted on March 24, 2010


Series: None

Heroine: Charlotte Court

Hero: Matt Sanders

With a powerful voice and unstoppable suspense, Elizabeth Jennings makes her Forever debut.

A shocking betrayal…her father’s murder…and a life-threatening accusation…Heiress Charlotte Court has walked into a waking nightmare-one that sends her running from her wealthy home to anywhere she can hide.

Across the border in Mexico, Charlotte creates a new identity and finds refuge in the battle-torn arms of Navy SEAL Matt Sanders. Fleeing his past, Matt yearns to protect her and replace her pain with pleasure. But Charlotte can’t trust anyone, not even someone she’s starting to love. She knows she’s a target-and out of sight, a soulless killer is zeroing in on his prey…

When you can’t get the woman, kill her. The old-fashioned way of wooing a woman by seducing her with flowery words, chocolate, roses, and jewelry is harder than ordering a kill. That’s what Villain #1 in this story orders his men to do when he couldn’t persuade the rich heiress heroine to marry him. The plan was to kill two birds with one stone – murder Charlotte and her father and make it appear as if Charlotte turned the gun on herself after murdering her father. Charlotte derails the plan when she enters the room moments after her father and his nurse are murdered. Hurt in self defense, Charlotte ran all the way to a small town in Mexico to recover. It was there that she met Matt who was also recovering from wounds of his own.

Matt was severely wounded while saving his men during a mission.  Once awaken from a coma, he struggles to get his physical and emotional bearings back. His first day in Baja, he throws his crutches in the sand and collapses into the water. Charlotte was sitting on the balcony of her rental house when she sees a man throw himself in the water. Thinking she was watching a man commit suicide by drowning she starts to run to shore to save him but stops when she realizes that he was doing laps in the water. Wary of leaving the man alone, she watches him until he gets up and collapse on the sand. Moments later, the man lifts his head and smiles in her direction. The two instantly bonded without uttering a word. For the next two months, Matt and Charlotte silently support and motivate each other from afar – Matt working his daily exercises in the water while Charlotte, fortify by his will, recovers her soul through her paintings. When the two finally gets together, the depth of their feelings is strengthened by the bond from their first meeting and the force of their wills for each other.

There are two villains in the story, one who is outwardly sadistic and another who is quietly brutal but no less dangerous. Ms. Jennings gives the readers insight to the villains through their thoughts which are pretty depraved.

Villain #1 is a greedy SOB who thinks it is his right to get the wealth that others so take for granted. With Charlotte escaped to the wind, her father dead, and no other living relatives around, Villain #1 uses his connections and succeeds in framing Charlotte for the death of her father. Alas, setting her up for murder isn’t enough and he hires an assassin to go after Charlotte.

Villain #2 enters the picture as another greedy SOB who utilizes his intellect and skills by selling out to the highest bidder. Villain #2 is highly intuitive and patient. The assessment and speed at which he narrows down from Charlotte’s last known moments to her present whereabouts illustrate a highly experienced assassin.  The ease of plotting and executing his kill plans illustrate a cold-blooded, confidant murderer used to completing his assassinations.

Both villains are vicious and tenacious. The end of their existence was swift but highly unsatisfying. Once Matt was clued in on Charlotte’s situation, the plot moves super quickly. The build-up of Charlotte’s retaliation against Villain #1 vanishes against Matt’s possessiveness and protection. Matt and Villain #2 read similar to Lisa Marie Rice’s hero and villains. I read that Elizabeth Jennings writes erotic romance under pen name Lisa Marie Rice and I definitely see similarities in the men.

Overall, this is a wonderfully suspenseful and sensual story of two strangers struggling at the worst points of their lives but survives through sheer will. I felt the pain, the longing…you really embrace each character as they go through the gamut of emotions. While I was disappointed with the stunted ending [re: the villains capture which was quick in comparison to the build-up], it was but a brief disappointment as I was too engrossed in what happened next to ponder it for long.

I want! all I can get my hands on of Elizabeth Jennings’ back list but they’re not so easy to find. I was able to immediately track down Homecoming [yay] which I also enjoyed – but that’s only two. 😉

Grading: B+


Thank you, Mary G, for recommending another great author!

ETA: See update in red – thoughts were albeit unclear. Sorry. 🙂

Posted in: B Reviews, Reviews