The Search by Nora Roberts

Who knew being a dog trainer could be so useful for finding love AND understanding the mind of a serial killer?

Fiona Bristow has made a new life on Orcas island; living in a beautiful cottage near the woods with her three dogs, socializing with her best friend, Mai, and stepmother Sylvia, running her successful dog training business and finding missing people with the aid of the search and rescue team that she set up, her life seems perfect. Except for the past she can’t quite leave behind, and the lack of a man to share her life with.

Enter Simon Doyle, artist and reluctant dog owner in need of help with his new puppy. Fiona’s not his type, she’s too skinny and friendly, and he’s not her type with his bluntness bordering on rudeness. Yet they’re drawn to each other and, as Fiona’s past returns to haunt her, they may need each other to survive.

Written in third person, past tense, The Search follows the conventions of a romance novel, yet manages to be a lot more. The search and rescue aspect of the book are well researched, and the several searches described are compelling. All of the characters are three dimensional human beings. The dark times in Fiona’s past add depth to her character, and the subject matter is conveyed well.

I have some experience in dog training, so I was both enthralled, and at times irritated, by the dog training in this book. I would love to live Fiona’s life, with her idyllic house and dog training business. The serial killer aspect of the story I thought was well done, if paced a little slow for my liking, and Fiona’s emotional resolution was satisfying, if the overall climax was a tad anticlimactic. However, the romance was not for me. I didn’t like the character of Simon, even though I understood him more by the end of the book, and I could have done without the numerous sex scenes. I understood where the author was going with the love story of two people who were not each other’s type, but it never quite gelled for me, and I can’t see their relationship lasting more than a couple of months after the book ends.

I award The Search

Click here to buy The Search on Amazon.

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