Tag Archives: The Art of Deception

Worth the Risk by Nora Roberts

21 Sep

If you’ve ever read any of Nora Roberts’ 209 plus romance novels, you’re well aware she always builds characters and their surroundings with proficiency.  In Worth the Risk, she combines two previously published novels under one cover; Partners, originally released in 1985 and The Art of Deception from 1986.  Of course both stories deal with romance and you know the couples will find each other in the end, but Ms. Roberts is so good at adding just enough mystery and suspense it keeps you interested until the very last page. 

Partners

Matthew Bates had wanted Laurel Armand for years, she was the sister of his best friend but she was also his professional adversary.  Laurel, the sultry Southern belle had always kept him at a safe distance. But when the rival newspaper reporters are forced to work together on the murder case of Anne Trulane, sparks fly and madness erupts in steamy New Orleans. Nora Roberts describes the scenes so vividly you can almost hear and picture the newsroom and the swamp. Determined to get their story, Matt and Laurel find themselves in the path of a disturbed killer, putting love and life on the line.

As Ms. Roberts always does, she creates characters that make us laugh.  Enter Laurel’s eccentric grandmother who wants to see the same happy ending we’re hoping for but at the same time we learn Laurel has an old childhood crush on the murder suspect, thus making him a rival of her current love interest.


The Art of Deception

The second story is The Art of Deception. It deals with 3 artists and forgeries in a castle along the Hudson River. Once more, until the end you are not sure who is responsible for any events or what is going on – you wind up making the discoveries and solving the puzzling activities along with the characters. That alone is extraordinary for romance novels where usually 10 pages in you really know exactly what is occurring.

Artist Adam Haines arrives at the Fairchild castle under the guise of a well-needed breather but was this handsome stranger all that he pretended to be? Kirby Fairchild, daughter of the eccentric patriarch Philip, couldn’t be sure.  What she did know was that as the days and nights wore on, the attraction she felt for him was building, whether she’d wanted it to or not. Was she in danger of falling hard for a stranger who was even more practiced in the art of deception than she was?  Very early on, the two are fascinated with one another and the walls she’s built up around herself slowly come down in the arms of Adam.  

The story is full of playful interaction between Kirby and her father and her father and everyone else.  He is generous and loving one minute and accusatory and suspicious the next.  Kirby does what she can to protect her father but knows he is not quite on the level.  

Throw in loveable characters like Cards and Harriet as well as groundskeeper Jamie, who although retired years ago runs the gardens like he owns the place (I can relate to controlling behavior in the garden) and you enjoy every scene they’re in. There are also necessary characters like Stuart and McIntyre that help pull the storyline together. What you end up with is a book with all the elements it needs for a great read.

 

Like I mentioned before, the fact that Nora Roberts’ couples end up together is no surprise. Still, you root for them and want to see their lives begin brand new.  The plot of these stories appeal to women looking for a good love story with a twist. Nora Roberts is a wonderful author because of the interesting plots she comes up with and the path she leads you down as you read.  Ms. Roberts knows a thing or two about writing romance novels, she has more than 400 million of her books in print, writes under several pseudonyms and has written more best sellers than anyone else on the planet.  I can’t be the only one enjoying her yarns… try one out for yourself.

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