I consider this novel one of Nora Roberts´ best work. The fact that I´ve read the printed edition while listening to the audiobook countless times guess says it all. The US edition is one hell of an entertaining mix between a romance novel, contemporary romance, and thriller. Simply magnificent.

The Search
by Nora Roberts
Publisher G.P. Putnam´s Sons on July 6, 2010
Genre Novel
Pages 488
Format Hardcover
Source Purchased

To most people, Fiona Bristow seems to have an idyllic life – a quaint house on an island off Seattle´s coast, a thriving dog-training school, and a challenging volunteer job performing canine search and rescue. Not to mention her three intensely loyal Labs. But Fiona got to this point by surviving a nightmare. Several years ago, she was the only survivor of a serial-killer – a madman who stalked and abducted young women strangled them, and left them buried with a red scarf on their bodies. As authorities were closing in on the Red Scarf Killer, he shot and killed Fiona´s cop fiancé and his K-9 partner. On Orcas Island, Fiona has found the peace and solitude she needed to rebuild her life. Yet all that changes on the day Simon Doyle barrels up her drive, desperate for her help. He´s the reluctant owner of an out-of-control puppy, foisted upon him by his mother. Jaws has eaten through Simon´s house, and he´s at his wit´s end. To Fiona, Jaws is nothing she can´t handle. Simon is another matter. A newcomer to Orcas, he´s a rugged and intensely private artist, known for creating exquisite furniture. Simon never wanted a puppy, and he most definitely doesn´t want a woman. Besides, the lanky redhead is not his type. But tell that to the laws of attraction. As Fiona embarks on training, Jaws and as Simon begins to appreciate both dog and trainer, the past tears back into Fiona´s life. A copycat killer has emerged out of the shadows, a man whose bloodlust has been channeled by a master with one motive: to reclaim the woman who slipped out of his hands …
Fiona Bristow is the only survivor who has escaped the assassination of a serial killer. And with which the serial killer of then still has an open bill. She moves to the island of Orcas and builds up a new life together with her three dogs. Fiona is part of a dog rescue squad and trained for their livelihood the dogs of others. This is how she meets Simon Doyle, who comes to see her with his puppy Jaws one day – in despair. Between Fiona and Simon, it crackles from the first moment, and for both is clear, against an affair between them is no objection. But one day Fiona gets the message that there has been another victim – a so-called imitator has come into action. Everyone involved then quickly realizes that Fiona is his ultimate goal. For Simon, a completely unfamiliar situation, especially as his feelings for Fiona are stronger than he thought, and Fiona has to struggle again with the panic attacks and nightmares of that time. 

Nora Roberts wrote a wonderfully coherent and atmospherically dense novel with a sophisticated thriller impact, which absolutely captivated me from the first page on. The reader gets to know the protagonist Fiona as well as Simon, some other characters, and the idyllic life on Orcas Island. In front of the reader´s eye, the author draws a magnificent landscape, forms cozy houses, at the same time peps them up with the announced evil in one of the first chapters. Immersed in the developing affair between the two main characters, the reader experiences a story that is constantly gaining in light by thoughts and views of Fiona and Simon. Once again, this novel reveals that Nora Roberts excels in her craft, writing, and is also very familiar with the male species. In beautiful entertaining dialogues, especially those with Simon are the hit, concise language, and extremely deliciously designed male characters, the author presents the reader with humorous insight into the mindset of men. Hilarious.

Strong-willed personalities meet each other, who complement each other perfectly in their interaction and act brilliantly together. Whether it´s Fiona´s friends, the FBI, or the scene where Fiona meets her tormentor of yesteryear. An extremely brilliant scene. Fiona no longer sees herself as the victim of that time. After all, the women in this novel are all strong personalities. The men are in no way inferior, even if they are often to be regarded with a smile. The reactions to the tree stump and its determination is more than amusing and shows once again that less is often more. Fantastic.

What I found particularly interesting is the portrayal of the serial killer of yesteryear and his imitator. Here Nora Roberts has succeeded admirably in presenting the evil in such a way that on the one hand it is perfectly clear that two sick characters are acting here, but this was presented with the necessary respect for the human nature of a figure and put into words. Here a psychological subtlety came to light, between the two serial killers and Fiona´s way of thinking to their approach and accomplished deeds, which I can just describe as remarkable. This perspective brings a brilliant kick in this novel, forming, so to speak, the thriller components that make the action of the characters to a fantastic experience. 

The novel has a fascinating atmosphere and, in my opinion, is one of Nora Roberts´s best works. The reader is well entertained with a varied and colorful plot. Passion, hate, and courage are the key elements that convince and turn this novel into a real experience.

Happy reading

Nora Roberts
Nora Roberts ©Bruce Wilder

Nora Roberts, born in Silver Spring, Maryland, is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than 200 novels. During the now-famous blizzard, she pulled out a pencil and notebook and began to write. It was there that a career was born. Several manuscripts and rejections later, her first book, Irish Thoroughbred, was published by Silhouette in 1981. Having spent her life surrounded by men, Ms. Roberts has a fairly good view of the workings of the male mind, which is a constant delight to her readers. It was, she’s been quoted as saying, a choice between figuring men out or running away screaming. Nora is a member of several writers groups and has won countless awards from her colleagues and the publishing industry. Recently The New Yorker called her “America’s favorite novelist.” She is also the author of the bestselling futuristic suspense series written under the pen name J. D. Robb. There are more than 500 million copies of her books in print.


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