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REVIEW

"A tremendous thriller"

Chloe Underwood left the North Carolina Mountains to live in Paris. She scored work as a translator of children's books at Les Frere Laurent due to her promiscuous roommate Sylvia Whickham. When Sylvia has a chance to spend the weekend with wealthy sixty-seven years old Henry, she coaxes Chloe to replace her in translating English to and from French.

Chloe arrives at Mirabel, which has security tighter than Fort Knox has. At the locale, Mr. Hakim leans towards sending Chloe home and several participants object to her presence speaking in Italian to hide what they say about her from her; the translator understands perfectly what they communicate, but pretends otherwise. When her clients learn that Chloe has found out that they are arms dealers, they must kill her. Her only hope of survival is one of the attendees, Bastien Toussaint, a man with at least a dozen identities. Compromising his undercover mission that he has played at for eleven months, he flees with Chloe, but she wonders if she is safe with him as she knows her heart is not.

Though why Chloe insisted on staying when her employer stated he did not need her seems off, readers will obtain plenty of pleasure from this taut romantic suspense thriller. The story line moves quickly once Chloe chooses to hide her ability to speak and comprehend Italian and never slows down until the climatic battle between Mr. Hakim's thugs and the heroine and her antiheroic champion. BLACK ICE is a tremendous thriller that showcases the skills of an author worth reading.

Reviewed by Harriet Klausner
Posted May 19, 2005

Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted January 18, 2007

SUMMARY

This taut romantic suspense novel from RITA Award--winner Stuart (The Widow) delivers deliciously evil baddies and the type of disturbing male protagonist that only she can transform into a convincing love interest. Chloe Underwood, a 23-year-old American who regards herself as a disappointment to her high-achieving family, makes a meager living in Paris by translating children's books into English. After accepting a last-minute translating job in the French countryside, she discovers that rather than working for a consortium of food executives, she's stumbled upon a group of sadistic international arms dealers. Cold-blooded assassin Bastian Touissant, who was sent a year earlier by a nebulous "the ends justify the means" agency to infiltrate this shady group and try to stop its illegal activity, seems to blend right in. On meeting Chloe, Bastian isn't sure whether she's a spy, perhaps sent to kill him, or the innocent she appears to be. Despite his ruthlessness, Bastian can't resist saving Chloe's life (on multiple, graphic occasions) and attempting to send her back to her family in the U.S. Brilliant characterizations and a suitably moody ambience drive this dark tale of unlikely love.

 

Black Ice
by Anne Stuart

MIRA Books
May 1, 2005
ISBN #0778321711
EAN #9780778321712
384 pages
Paperback
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Other Books by
Anne Stuart

Dogs and Goddesses
The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes
Cold as Ice
The Devil's Waltz
Date with a Devil
Into the Fire
What Lies Beneath
Still Lake
The Widow
Shadows at Sunset
Lady Fortune
Shadow Lover
Catspaw II
Glass Houses
A Dark and Stormy Night
Crazy Like a Fox
Ritual Sins
Moonrise
Nightfall
Love a Dark Lord
Tangled Lies
A Rose at Midnight
Bewitching Hour
The Houseparty
Catspaw
Rocky Road
Museum Piece
The Spinster and the Rake
Lord Satan's Bride
Cameron's Landing #504


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