Title: In Safe Hands
Author: Katie Ruggle
Series: Search and Rescue #4
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Available: 4th Oct
In the remote Rocky Mountains, lives depend on the Search & Rescue brotherhood. But in a place this far off the map, trust is hard to come by and secrets can be murder…
It’s all come down to this…
Daisy Little has lived in agoraphobic terror for over eight years. Trapped within a prison of her own making, she watches time pass through her bedroom window. Daisy knows she’ll never be a part of the world…until the day she becomes the sole witness of a terrible crime that may finally tear the Search and Rescue brotherhood apart for good.
Source: ARC from Sourcebooks Casablanca via NetGalley
Before I begin this review there’s something I should mention. If you’re new to the Search and Rescue series don’t start here! The big mystery has already been revealed (the epilogue of the last book, which gets repeated as the prologue for this one) and you’ll miss so much if you do. Plus, this review (and most reviews) will probably contain spoilers for the earlier books. I will try to keep them to a minimum, but if this series intrigues you, go and read the earlier books first. (I’d recommend starting with Hold Your Breath, because that prologue doesn’t do this series justice.)
With that said – this was so good. The murderer has been revealed, but the story is far from over yet. My reaction at the end of Gone Too Deep was mostly nooooooooo! Because although I’d suspected this character, I’d hoped it wasn’t them. Well, not only do we now know who did it, we’re about to find out why as well as a whole lot more about them and, my, haven’t they been busy.
Which is where our heroine comes in. Daisy has been agoraphobic since she saw her mother shot in front of her when she was sixteen. She doesn’t leave the house, doesn’t sleep much and spends some of her time watching the neighbours. Her only real friend is Chris, the deputy we’ve met in previous books, so naturally he’s the one she tells when she sees something suspicious in the middle of the night. And everything spirals from there.
I liked both Daisy and Chris, though their romance is almost glacial in its slowness (until the brakes fly off with slightly surprising swiftness, but since it took so long to get there, good!). Despite Daisy’s problems, she’s smart and fun, if easily overwhelmed by company. I loved how she gains strength as the book goes on, despite certain attempts to undermine her mental state. She’s a bit quirky, but I liked her a lot, especially when the demon dolls were involved. Likewise, Chris has been a minor character in all the previous books so it was nice to see more of him, even if we didn’t learn a huge amount about him.
Mostly that’s because this is Daisy’s book. We get a few POV scenes from the murderer and a couple of others, but mostly it’s all seen through Daisy’s eyes. I would have liked to have had Chris’ take on a few things, but it works well enough without it. Especially as the romance really takes a back seat in this book. The mystery of the murders and Daisy’s own mental struggle are much more prevalent and the growing sense of menace as the two things threaten to combine definitely added to the page-turning tension. Even with my having guessed the identity and motive a while ago, there’s still enough going on that I was hooked on the action even without the mystery.
This was a fine end to a really good series. We got to see all the previous couples again, the loose ends were tied up and the action and mystery spiralled convincingly out of control for a compelling andtense ride. The romance was wrapped up a bit fast after the slow build-up, but to be honest there wasn’t much room for more of it in what we had. In all I thought it was great, and even though this particular story arc has come to an end, I can’t help hoping I might get the chance to revisit this setting again sometime. I’m pretty sure I caught a few interesting names being dropped here and there who might have their own stories to tell…
In Safe Hands is out October 4th.
Visit Katie Ruggle for more details.