Publisher: Pocket Books
Mercy by Julie Garwood starts a little after the events of Heartbreaker end although this time around the main character is Theo Buchanan. Theo is Nick’s older brother and you learn a little about him in Heartbreaker but you don’t really need to read Nick’s story to understand Theo’s. Mercy takes place primarily in Louisiana and the only real cross over from the first book in the series is the character of Noah Claybourne, whom I adore.
The start of Mercy was a little slow for me as I found the prologue to be a bit boring and the first chapter just seemed so disconnected and all over the place. But once I finally made it to chapter two things really started to pick up and I read the entire book in a day. Garwood still enjoys using head jumping as a way to tell her story but it seemed less here than I’ve encountered in previous books by her. The mystery/suspense aspect of the book was pretty good and it even managed to surprise me a time or two.
I adored the main characters, Michelle and Theo, but it was some of the secondary characters that really made this book. Michelle’s father, for one, and then the other residents of the uber small town that Michelle lived in as well. The town residents served to bring a bit of levity to Mercy which was a nice mix in with the mystery/suspense portion of it. Poor Theo never really had a shot of leaving Bowen once he set foot there as the residents were all pretty persistent in keeping him there. I loved seeing his confusion, bafflement, and then acceptance. Sometimes its easier to give in than it is to fight. lol
Overall, I enjoyed Mercy a bit more than I did Heartbreaker more for the characters and the town I think than the story. As I did really like the serial killer part of Heartbreaker but there was just something about Michelle, Theo, and the rest of Bowen that really set it apart. I hope that its a town that we’ll return to in future books of this series as it was just such a fun, quirky place. Mercy was a good read and its a book that I would recommend to any who like a good romantic suspense novel. I always like my romances to have a little meat to them instead of just being boy-meets-girl so I am loving this sub-genre of the contemporary romance world.