Scenes of Passion
Safe and steady pretty much sums up Maggie Stanton’s life. But a chance encounter stirs long-buried desires and urges her to do the unimaginable — take a risk. Shockingly, the man who convinces her to forsake predictability for passion is the full-grown version of her childhood best friend. Only, this Matthew Stone wants more and Maggie almost believes that their whirlwind romance is meant to be. Then she learns that Matthew is keeping a secret and the consequences could change everything . . .
Scenes of Peril
The snowstorm forecast says it’s a big one, but wildlife photographer Paige Dawson is prepared. Until a terrible car accident brings a sexy stranger to her remote mountain cabin and the bad weather strands them together . . . for days. The heat between them is like nothing she’s ever known — incendiary, undeniable. And just as she begins to hope for something real with Colin Reid, after the snow melts, he remembers what caused his accident . . . and it may be too late for them both.
*Blurb from Goodreads*
When Sorenson asked for a review I was pretty excited to read her contribution. I’ve enjoyed her suspense books in the past and was looking forward to seeing what she could do with a short story. It wasn’t until I finished reading both stories that I found out the Brockmann story was re-released from an older Silhouette book. There were probably about twenty times I thought about quitting mid-way through her contribution, but stuck with it. Had I known it was a previously released title, I have to say I probably would have put that story to rest and skipped directly to Sorenson’s story.
Scenes of Passion was a second chance love story about Maggie and her childhood buddy Matt. Matt had always had a crush on Maggie, but between his on again off again relationship with her best friend, it never went anywhere. Now that Matt is back and needs Maggie’s help, they are free to explore the attraction between them.
I really felt like this book was older than it’s original 2003 release date. It felt almost “retro” in it’s contemporary category. I’m not a huge fan of category books from the 90s and early 2000s, so my problems with this novella were plentiful. Maggie let everyone and their mother (hell, her own mother) walk all over her. She was a doormat and although she loathed it about herself, she never got the gumption to make a change. She was content just floating through life hating everything. It was so annoying. Then, once she got the stomach to stand up for herself, it seemed like she constantly second guessed herself. I needed more from her.
Matt was a little better, but I had a hard time with their romance because of Maggie’s obnoxious ways. Why he continued to put up with her, especially after she flipped out on him, was something I couldn’t understand.
I really didn’t enjoy the first story at all, but was glad that the Sorenson novella made up for it. In Scenes of Peril, Paige is stranded at her cabin home during a horrible storm when she takes in a reckless driver. Colin can’t remember anything that happened the day he was rescued by Paige, but after just a few short days together, the attraction is more than either can stand. But a stalker has been waiting to make the move on Colin, and won’t let Paige get in her way.
I thought Sorenson did a great job with throwing a little bit of the classic suspense she is known for, while balancing the romance. I thought Paige and Colin had a very QUICK but sweet courtship. I always struggle with characters who get their HEA after just a day or two, but these two worked for me. Probably because they were committed to each other, but also to taking it slow. I needed that for their characters, and was so glad to see the way it all worked out for them.
I liked the twist of Colin having memory loss because of the car accident, because I think it added a lot to not only the suspense subplot, but also because it gave them the chance to really focus on nothing but each other and getting better. Along with the storm, it added another layer to the little cocoon they had going on in Paige’s cabin.
All in all I really liked one story, and really disliked the other. Brockmann fans might enjoy this previously released novella, however fans of Sorenson may want to just give this one a skip. If I had to rate Scenes of Passion as a solo book, I would give it a D-. However, Sorenson gave us a wonderfully short story about two people caught up in the pain of their pasts that want to move forward and find something and someone special. I adored their romance and would give Scenes of Peril a B+.
Overall, I give the Passion and Peril duology a C.