July 18, 2017
Blurb from Goodreads: “B.J. Daniels is at the top of her game…the perfect blend of hot romance and thrilling suspense.” – New York Times bestselling author Allison Brennan
Burdened by family secrets, this cowboy rides alone
For twenty-five years, the case of the McGraw twins kidnapping has remained unsolved. As the eldest son, Cull oversees the McGraw horse ranch, wary of prying eyes. So when true crime writer Nikki St. James comes forward with new information, Cull can’t believe his father invites her onto the compound.
His family has suffered enough–he’s not about to let St. James snoop and ruin them completely. But Nikki finds the eldest McGraw’s protectiveness as endearing as it is aggravating. After all, this case is personal to her, too… And her secrets can set the truth free–if they don’t destroy the McGraws first.
Look for the next two installments in this gripping new series Whitehorse, Montana: The McGraw Kidnapping! Dead Ringer Rough Rider
SASCHA DARLINGTON’S REVIEW
B.J. Daniels’ Dark Horse is a crisply written romantic suspense about a true crime writer, Nikki St. James, who discovers that the identity of her father isn’t exactly what her mother had told her through the years. She discovers that he was implicated in the kidnapping and perhaps murder of a rancher’s twins and decides to investigate in the hopes of clearing his name.
Dark Horse is a very quick read with almost a gothic feel of ghosts and dread, which infect the main character so that she scurries through rooms feeling as if evil is trailing her. Because of the pace of Dark Horse, the reader never really comes to know Nikki as well as one would like nor really understand why she would be stupid enough to step off the curb in front of a pickup truck at the beginning of the novel to ingratiate herself to one of the siblings of the kidnap victims when she already has a meeting with the people on the ranch. It definitely undermines her credibility as an intelligent woman. However, she’s observant and suspicious and manages to mostly rectify the first idiocy.
Despite the fact that this is a short novel there are many points-of-view used throughout and mostly unnecessarily in my opinion. I presume that Sheriff McCall was a character from a previous novel so that Daniels’ readers would be pleased to be reunited with her, but reading this as a standalone, the intrusion of this particular extra pov was not welcome as it added no extra dimension to Dark Horse.
The mystery itself was intriguing with lots of false trails. I was a little disappointed in the ending as it left some things open, but I presume that this is an opportunity for a series and those future novels will wrap up the loose ends.
The romance is pleasant enough, but it reminded me of the novels I read when I was an early teenager of the guy roughly pulling the woman to him and kissing her like he had every right to do it and the fate of the world was attached to it. It wasn’t really sexy although my teen self probably would have thought it was.
All in all Dark Horse was an intriguing, quick read.
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
4 out of 5 butterflies