Monday, March 22, 2010

Feature Review: "The Officer's Girl," by Leigh Duncan

By Becke Davis, RBTB Contributing Editor

“Taken by Storm”


When my daughter moved to Orlando, I insisted she buy a camping lantern and keep plenty of bottled water on hand – not to mention duct tape to criss-cross the window glass – in preparation for all the hurricanes I felt sure she’d have to endure. Orlando is pretty far inland, and hurricanes have only come close twice in the five years she’s lived there. At nearby Cocoa Beach, her favorite spot to get sunburned, it’s a different story.

Like my daughter, Stephanie Bryant, the heroine of Leigh Duncan’s sweet-and-sultry upcoming release, “The Officer’s Girl,” is an Ohio native transplanted to Florida. Her realtor, eager for a sale, has slightly exaggerated the safety of living on a barrier island, so Stephanie mistakenly thinks she is safe when storm clouds roll in. She worked hard for the promotion that brought her to Cocoa Beach, and endured a makeover to give her a look of authority. No way is she going to let a little wind and rain make her late for her first day at her new job.

Officer Brett Lincoln is doing a final pass through town to make sure no clueless tourists try to ride out the fast-approaching hurricane when he spots a pint-sized dynamo blithely stacking moving boxes outside her ocean-front house. He insists she must evacuate, but the expensively dressed “me-me” type – who reminds him of his self-centered ex-girlfriend – cops an attitude. What choice does he have but to slap on the cuffs? The woman is hot as blazes, but the last thing Brett wants is to connect with another woman whose whole focus is her career.

Leigh Duncan gives the term “beach read” a whole new meaning when she shows us Cocoa Beach as a cozy small town and not just a spring break destination. She makes you feel the sultry Florida heat, but the story – true to the Harlequin American Romance style – is heartwarming, sexy and sweet rather than steamy and graphically erotic. Whether you read this at the beach or in your living room . . .

Buy the Book!

Watch for “The Officer’s Girl,” winner of the 2007 Golden Rose Contest for Short Contemporary Fiction, in early April, 2010. In the meantime, let’s talk cops and cuffs – why are they so hot? Are you a fan of romances where the hero wears a badge and a gun?

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Make sure you jump on board the RBTB NEWs so you don't miss out on any of the upcoming new stuff happening. You'll only get the advance deets if you take part. So please join here, won't you?!

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Thursday: PJ Ausdenmore and Gannon Carr invite you to join them here as these darlings from TheRomanceDish.com show us the mysterious, sexy side of "His Darkest Hunger," byJuliana Stone.

Friday: Cara Elliott -- debut author and half of the classy Yale romance class teachin' team you read about here first -- visits RBTB to chat! Her "To Sin With A Scoundrel" is getting lots of great praise! I've just started it, and I can see why...

37 comments:

Princess Bumblebee said...

Great job, Becke!
OOOOH, cops! Yes, love em. There's just something about those cuffs, hehe!

Becke Davis said...

I agree, Princess - I love books with all kinds of police officers, FBI agents, etc. as heroes.

Do you think the uniforms have something to do with the attraction?

Roxanne St. Claire said...

I loved, loved, loved THE OFFICER'S GIRL! Cannot recommend this book highly enough.

I'm a huge fan of a hero in a badge with a gun. Cuffs optional.

Great review, Becke!!

Becke Davis said...

Hi Rocki - thanks for stopping by! For me, it's all about the romance -- this is the first book I've read by Leigh Duncan, and I'll definitely be coming back for more!

Judy said...

Leigh's book sounds delicious. Can't wait to read it. Leigh is a fantastic person and I'm so happy she's on her way with not one, but two books and more to come, I'm sure.

Becke Davis said...

Hi Judy - I hope a lot of people will give Leigh's book a try!

Maggie Toussaint said...

Leigh's book sounds like a great read. I love books that are set south of the Mason-Dixon line, though many folks don't consider Florida "southern" - but hurricanes truly are southern. This sounds like a wonderful read.

Your WRW pal, Maggie
www.maggietoussaint.com

Becke Davis said...

Maggie - that's such a good point about Florida. I almost described this as a "Southern" story, but then I realized most people don't think of Florida that way.

It really connected with me because I visit my daughter in that area so often!

Anita Clenney said...

The Officer's Girl looks like a great read. Can't wait to pick it up.

Becke Davis said...

Hi Anita - I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Mary said...

I can't wait to read it!! It sounds like an awesome read. Congratulations Leigh on your debut book!!

Becke Davis said...

Mary, I just found out this is Leigh's first ever book review. I'm honored to have written it!

Leigh Duncan said...

Becke, This has been a year of firsts. First book. First sale. And now first review. I'm thrilled that you enjoyed "The Officer's Girl." I've had all my fingers and toes crossed in hopes that others would like the story as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Becke Davis said...

Leigh, as a struggling writer, I am soooo excited to review your debut book!

I am sure this will be just the beginning of a long and successful career!

amy kennedy said...

Ooooh, this sounds so good. Cops and cuffs? Yes, please, I'll take two.

Leigh Duncan said...

A long and successful career is what we all dream of, isn't it? I'm so blessed that you think it's possible for me, Becke. Writing romance is what I've always wanted to do.

Princess Bumblebee said...

Congrats, Leigh! I must confess that I alsoo have a secret dream of being published someday!
Becke, yes, there is definatly something to be said about those uniforms!

Becke Davis said...

Hi Amy, great to see you!

Leigh - I'm so happy you are following your dream!

Leigh Duncan said...

Becke and Princess Bumblebee, new authors sell every day. If you're looking for proof, look no farther than me. Write. Learn. And send your work out there. I believe you can make it happen.

Cyndi said...

Great review Becke! Looking forward to receiving my pre-ordered copy of "The Officer's Girl." Congratulations Leigh!

Becke Davis said...

Hi Cyndi - I'm afraid I'll have a lot longer wait for Leigh's next book to come out! Leigh, if you see this, can you tell us what's up next for you?

Leigh Duncan said...

Next up is CATCH OF A LIFETIME, my second book for Harlequin American. In this light-hearted contemporary, more than hooks and lines are in the lesson plans when thoracic surgeon Dan Hamilton hires fly fishing guide Jessica Cofor. The feisty widow is determined to turn her favorite fishing hole into a protected habitat, a move which threatens Dan's dreams of a group home for foster kids. Acceptance among the county's elite medical community hangs in the balance for the foster-care-kid-gone-good as Dan and Jess tangle over one of Florida's last stretches of pristine riverside property.
But you're right about the wait, Becke. CATCH is scheduled for release in 2011.

Becke Davis said...

What a great storyline! Remind me when it can be preordered, Leigh, I definitely want to read it!

PJ said...

Thanks for the great review, Becke! I'll be sure to pick this one up. I love Harlequin Americans and I'm very familiar with that part of Florida. My sister-in-law grew up on that barrier island (just south of Cocoa) and she, my brother and their family still live there.

Congratulations on the release, Leigh!

Becke Davis said...

PJ - Cocoa Beach and Daytona Beach are the closest to Orlando, I think. Anyway, those are the beaches my daughter goes to. The last time my son went to Cocoa Beach there was some kind of algae "red tide" - I guess it was nasty, but interesting to see! He had a bad allergic reaction to it.

I'm sure you'll enjoy Leigh's book, PJ!

Lucy Monroe said...

I don't know if it's the latent "National Enquirer" reporter in me, or what, but I love hearing about real life connections to books. Thanks for sharing that, Becke. :)

The book sounds just fab, Leigh! And in answer to your question, Becke - an officer with cuffs and he knows how to use 'em? Oh, my yes. Happy sigh!

Becke Davis said...

This is true, Lucy. Let me count the ways I've read about cuffs in romance books . . .

Maria Geraci said...

I can't wait to read this! I grew up in Melbourne (hop, skip and a jump from CB). Great review!

Becke Davis said...

Are you still in Florida, Maria? I love to come down for the Epcot flower show, but I'm going to miss it this year.

debbie h said...

Great article Becke, all I can say is Oh my aching TBR pile ;-)
Deb

Becke Davis said...

Debbie - I know just what you mean. Mine has grown like kudzu in the past year or so!

Deb said...

Great review, Becke. This book sounds like a good read. Men in uniform--cops, military, etc. Sigh-worthy images. :)

Becke Davis said...

"Sigh-worthy images" - love it!

Gannon Carr said...

Sounds like a good one, Becke! My husband's aunt and uncle live in Cocoa Beach, and I spent quite a bit of time there soaking up the rays on the beach when I was in college. :-)

Becke Davis said...

It's nice having relatives in Florida, isn't it? Hope you had a fun birthday!

PJ said...

Ah yes, Red Tide. That brings back many not so lovely memories, Becke. I lived on the southwest coast of Florida for many years and I still remember that horrid smell, even after being gone for the past 20 years.

Becke Davis said...

PJ - It's nice to know there are SOME drawbacks to living out of the Snow Zone!