Monday, February 22, 2010

DIK Review: Open Season

Open Season
Linda Howard

Romantic Suspense
Pocket Books/July 2001

From the back cover ~

Be careful what you wish for...

On her thirty-fourth birthday, Daisy Minor decides to make over her entire life. The small-town librarian has had it with her boring clothes, her ordinary looks and nearly a decade without so much as a date. It's time to get a life - and a sex life. The perennial good girl, Daisy transforms herself into a party girl extraordinaire - dancing the night away at clubs, laughing and flirting with abandon - and she's declared open season for manhunting. But her free-spirited fun turns to shattering danger when she witnesses something she shouldn't - and becomes the target of a killer. Now, before she can meet the one man who can share her life, first she may need him to save it.

This month's DIK Challenge book was chosen from Ms. Moonlight's list. And she has great taste in books. :) This one and the Simone Eckeles are the only ones on her list I haven't read. I do consider myself a fan of Linda Howard even though there are still a number of her books I have yet to read. Open Season was one of them but not any more.

Open Season starts with a young girl hoping for a better life. She trusts the wrong person and things don't go as planned. The opening is dark with a look at one of the ways illegal immigrants are abused and how those abuses have far reaching affects. The affects are not only felt at the border but by people who live beyond it. Even small town librarians.

Daisy Minor is such a fun, interesting heroine. She's one of those women that, if she were real, I would like to have as a friend. And she's a librarian, which gives her bonus points in my book. :) She's been stuck in a rut for a very long time. Living with her mother and her aunt doesn't exactly help her social life either. She's grown accustomed to going to work, never late, and then spending her free time mostly at home. Her life changing moment is her birthday. Odd that it wasn't her 30th but her 34th. I guess she was deep in that rut. When Daisy's mother and Aunt Jo find out about Daisy's decision they decide to help and enlist someone who they think knows all about makeovers. Here's a fact I didn't know - If you're not sure if a man is gay, ask him what color "puce" is. The things you learn when reading a romance novel. LOL

Before Daisy undergoes her transformation Jack Russo, the Chief of Police takes a notice to Daisy. He needs to use the library and Daisy's there to help. Jack isn't Daisy's type, he's very athletic and well muscled. And Daisy isn't exactly Jack's type either but he does notice her and seems to take pleasure in ruffling her feathers.

Jack is an alpha all the way. He is a former SWAT officer with the Chicago and New York police forces and while he enjoys police work, he decided he needed a change. So he chooses to slow things down and take the job of Chief of Police in the small town of Hillsboro, Alabama. Jack soon finds himself involved with Daisy in more ways than he imagined. Jack is a tough alpha on the outside but a real sweetheart on the inside. He's bossy when it comes to Daisy's safety, doesn't understand what she's talking about half the time and still manages to make her feel special.

Daisy and Jack together were a mismatched pair but Howard made them work. They were funny, often laugh out loud funny with their arguments and sexual escapades. Yep, escapades. For these two, just choosing a condom turns into an episode of "What Not to Wear". I completely delighted in Daisy and Jack's sex scenes and near sex scenes. Between the sexual tension, the humor and the tenderness, their relationship totally worked and I could see them being together long after the book ended.

There is still the problem of what Daisy may have seen and now has someone trying to kill her. That's where Jack comes in and starts to unravel the pieces of the mystery of who and why. Daisy is helpful in getting information and together they are able to keep Daisy safe and discover the darker side of small town life. This for me was the weakest part of the book. It was fairly obvious from early on who was in on what. I prefer my suspense to be more suspenseful. That part of the plot just didn't hold my interest as much as Jack and Daisy's developing relationship.

Even with that minor issue I'm still very thankfully I finally read Open Season and would certainly recommend it to any Linda Howard fan or fan of romantic suspense.

Rating: A-


  1. Going on my list of Linda Howard books to read, Leslie... *sigh* You're killing me here, LOL! Great review!

  2. Great Review, I read this about a year ago, it was my first from Howard and I have to say I loved it!!!

  3. Seriously, you haven't read this book before? I'm surprised because it was re-read a lot last year for my challenge :D

    So glad you enjoyed it!! :D It was pretty good, classic Howard in my opinion :) I wish she could go back to that kind of books.

  4. Hils ~ like you don't add to my list? LOL

    Brande ~ You're first Howard? Have you read more since? She's got a great backlist. :)

    nath ~ nope - I've still got a few of her older releases I haven't read yet. :)

  5. I love this book! Daisy and Jack really charmed me, and the condom scenes always make me laugh. So jealous you have more of LH older releases to catch up on. I miss her old writing!

  6. I listened to the audiobook last year, and while I enjoyed it the action/romance felt a bit rushed. About 3/4 of the way thru it, I realized I was listening to an abridged version!
    Now, reading your review, I'm thinking I might have to go get the complete book and see what I missed!

  7. Tabitha ~ I’ve got All the Queen’s Men and After the Night on the tbr pile. And I’m not sure if I’ve read her westerns. Still quite a few to look forward to.

    Renee ~ that’s happen to me a couple of times and I keep thinking I skipped ahead somehow. LOL

  8. I am so glad you enjoyed "Open Season" as much as I did!



  9. MsM ~ excellent choice on your part. :)

  10. I read this for the first time last summer. I thought the romance was so much fun and so sweet... but like you, the suspense wasn't quite right. It was too heavy of a subject matter for such a fun book and didn't quite 'fit' for me. But Daisy and Jack were so good together!!

  11. Ohhh, After the Night is one of my favorite!! But the hero is really a jerk ^_^; Wonder what you'll think of him :P

  12. Christine ~ I loved Daisy and Jack. Definitely the best part of the book!

    nath ~ I think Kristie is the one that recommended After the Night. I just know I got it because of a blogger. :)