Relentless by Cherry Adair (Lodestone #3)

Relentless by Cherry AdairAvailable: March 19th, 2013 Amazon/B&N

Type: Romantic Suspense

Publisher: Pocket

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Nikki

The find of the century will be lost unless Isis McGee and Connor Thorne unravel the truth behind an ancient Egyptian secret. Isis McGee believes her father, once a world-renowned archaeologist  when he claims to have found the Egyptian tomb that’s been his life’s work. However, between August McGee’s crumbled reputation and painful descent into Alzheimer’s, Isis needs help re-finding the tomb before the valley where it’s located is flooded for a much-needed dam. But the only proof her father has is an artifact that’s been stolen. And all she has to jump start the search is the exquisite gold outer box that held the relic.

Ex-MI5 agent Connor Thorne had a near death experience in Afghanistan five years ago. There, love and duty collided, leaving him bitter, disillusioned, and with a special talent for finding lost things. Now working for Lodestone, he uses his uncanny sixth sense to find lost or stolen objects, which makes him the perfect operative to help Isis McGee find her father’s lost tomb. But Conner hates deserts, and the last thing he wants is a beautiful woman tagging along while he does his job.

From Seattle, to London and Cairo, they are in a race to find the clues before the sands of time run out. Red-hot passion ignites in the desert heat as Connor and Isis must outwit a faceless enemy more powerful, more ruthless, than either can imagine.

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As much as it pains me to say this, I just am not a huge fan of this book. I read the ARC so it’s feasible that some last minute changes were made in order to fix some of the issues, but since I don’t have time to read the finished copy, I’m going to just call it like I see it based on what I read.

Isis is intent on proving her wayward archaeologist father found Cleopatra’s lost tomb and she’s coerced Conner into coming along for the ride using what little money she has left to hire the Lodestone agent to help her track her fathers last movements. Her father safely tucked away in a nursing home suffering from dementia from a blow to the head in an attack that left only him alive on his last dig….the one where he claims to have found the tomb.  Isis is stubborn and gets what she wants out of Conner by sheer force of will. Even though her bubbly attitude grated on me, I loved her tenacity to see it through to the end and prove her father wasn’t crazy. She’s not impervious to the danger and that felt like a real reaction coming from a photographer. She often needed reassurance from Conner about her safety and I was glad that by that point in the book Conner was able to give it to her without acting like a jerk. They are pursued by a variety of shadowy baddies who seem to have it out for both of them making identifying them difficult. I’m no doctor but since Conner walks with a limp and severe pain in his one leg I didn’t find the fight scenes believable. I liked he had limitations because often heros seem superhuman, but if his leg was that bad how did he managed to kick the shit out of trained professional hit men?

The relationship between Conner and Isis felt forced and superficial. I wanted to like them together but Conner comes across as such a huge pompous ass for most of the book. He has good reason I suppose, with his injury from an op gone wrong and forced hiatus from British Intelligence but it didn’t make it easier to digest or make his actions ok. He’s a stereotypical British man…too good for Isis and her little problem of finding a Egyptian tomb. Isis is the complete opposite from Conner and appears to have a personality akin to a Starbucks employee at 7am on a Sunday. You know…annoyingly happy…all the time. She refutes his snappy behavior each time and despite his surliness, she wants in his pants. So the romance aspect was seriously lacking. When Conner finally thaws out and he and Isis come together the  sex was unremarkable. In fact I might call it boring. Because I didn’t feel any tension or draw to their relationship the sex felt like just a continuation in the story. Later in the book Conner does loosen up a bit and I did eventually grow to like him…somewhat…

The ending was just that. An ending. Very anti-climatic and quiet for a suspense type book. Things tied up neatly and bad guys Conner had been after for years are suddenly apprehended without fanfair. Much too tidy for my tastes. 

I did enjoy all the Egyptian information and thought it made the books descriptive scenes really stand out. Adair excels at setting the scene no matter where her books are set. From the snowy mountains to the dusty deserts you never have any problems seeing her vision. Very Indiana Jones.

Relentless lost me early on, and though I did finish it, I wasn’t ever fully back on board. I liked book 1 and 2 of this series so I will be back for book 4 hoping we finally get to see Gideon, Zak’s (owner of Lodestone) missing brother who has been presumed dead since book 1.

I give Relentless by Cherry Adair 3 stars! 

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