A few weeks back, I went to an author’s event at Barnes & Noble in The Pruneyard. I got wind of it through Hannah Jayne, who sent out an evite. There were 10 local authors there, including 3 that I had already read: Hannah Jayne, Jasmine Haynes, and Adina Senft (in fact, I have read 2 books each from these 3 and will read more). I have this rule that if I come across any author in my local travels, I will read at least one of his/her books and blog about it. So, at just one event, I obligated myself to read 7 new authors. This is the first 1.
Fever by Joan Swan. I loved this book! Of all of the local authors that I have read (I’m now up to 13 authors and 26 books), there have been 4 other books that I absolutely loved:
Oracle of Stamboul – Michael David Lukas (historical fantasy)
Wyndano’s Cloak – R. A. Silverberry (Peter Adler) (YA fantasy)
The Hidden Life – Adina Senft (Shelley Bates) (book 2 of Amish trilogy)
Past Midnight – Jasmine Haynes (Jennifer Skully) (erotic romance)
Let me make it clear that I have very much liked the other 21 books and all 13 authors (I don’t count Robert Berramo, whose post-apocalyptic novel, The Shadow Patrol, only lasted 60 pages before I gave up on it – despite my aforementioned commitment to local authors). But there’s just something about these 5 that grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. So, on to Fever. Teague Creek is in prison for a heinous crime. He comes to the hospital for a routine medical procedure and, along with another prisoner, escapes by taking Dr. Alyssa Foster, who administers the procedure, as a hostage. The irony is that Alyssa is only there because she is substituting for the regular technician. In fact, Teague has a connection with the technician who’s supposed to be there, even though he has never met her.
What follows is the chasing of Teague by the police and by a shadowy, shady (a small amount of alliteration) federal agency. Of course, the Stockholm Syndrome sets in. For those who haven’t heard that expression before (me being 1 of them), that’s when a captive forms an emotional attachment to her (most often) captor (think of Bel Canto by Ann Patchett).
I thought the writing was great, the story was captivating, and the relationship between Teague and Alyssa was electric. I guess you would call this book a romance. There are sex/lovemaking scenes that are semi-, but not super-, graphic. But the strength of the book is how much Joan makes you care about Teague and Alyssa and how much you are rooting for Teague to get away and take Alyssa with him. I reiterate: I loved this book!