The Hopeless Romantics Book Blog are pleased to be a part of the Blog Tour, Review and Giveaway for K.A Tucker's "Chasing River (A Burying Water Novel)."
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1cmRftS
Armed with two years' worth of savings and the need to experience life outside the bubble of her Oregon small town, twenty-five-year old Amber Welles is prepared for anything. Except dying in Dublin. Had it not been for the bravery of a stranger, she might have. But he takes off before she has the chance to offer her gratitude.
Twenty-four-year-old River Delaney is rattled. No one was supposed to get hurt. But then that American tourist showed up. He couldn't let her die, but he also couldn't risk being identified at the scene—so, he ran. Back to his everyday life of running his family’s pub. Only, everyday life is getting more and more complicated, thanks to his brother, Aengus, and his criminal associations. When the American girl tracks River down, he quickly realizes how much he likes her, how wrong she is for him. And how dangerous it is to have her around. Chasing her off would be the smart move.
Maybe it's because he saved her life, or maybe it's because he's completely different from everything she's left behind, but Amber finds herself chasing after River Delaney. Amber isn’t the kind of girl to chase after anyone.
And River isn't the kind of guy she'd want to catch.
K.A Tucker is an automatic one click for me. The stories she gives us are captivating and unique and the characters we are introduced to are difficult not to like. However... (and I don't say this easily), "Burying Water" is probably my least favourite of everything I have read by this author. I'm not saying it was a bad read but equally I wasn't blown away by it either. But before I go into what didn't work quite so well for me, let's look at all the positives.
The premise of the story was a good one and different to anything I'd read before. Set in Dublin, as well as focusing on the unlikely but swoon worthy romance between River Delaney and Amber Welles, there was also much emphasis placed on the political unrest in the country. In fact that is how the couple first met. Amber was in the wrong place at the wrong time and River Delaney just happened to be her Irish knight in shining armour, putting himself in harms way to protect her. Now that is brave, gutsy and noble... isn't it? But what was River hiding from Amber and should his secret ever be revealed, would Amber still see him in the same light? This is the part of the story I couldn't wait to get to because I could see the couple's affections towards one another growing stronger by the day. In fact the more they saw of one another, the more it was as if they were meant to be so I couldn't wait to see how everything would pan out when the proverbial hit the fan... which if course it would.
The way she looked at me today, and yesterday at the bar, as if I can do no wrong.... She
obviously sees me in a better light than I actually warrant, and I like the feel of that light.
Both River and Amber were fab leading characters. As much as River had that good old fashioned Irish charm that could melt the knickers off the ladies, there was another side to his personality that really pulled at the heart strings. Caught between a rock and a hard place, he really was in an impossible situation and the more I read, the more I found myself wondering how he would ever get out of the mess that had been created. I wanted him to run away and never look back but of course that was never going to be an option. He was Irish and family was everything and so he had to try and find a way to work it all out but at the same time, protect those he held close.
Now you'll probably remember Amber from previous books in the series. She was Jesse's sister and Sheriff Gabe Welle's daughter so I guess it stands to reason that trouble would follow her half way around the world to the Emerald Isle. After all, when it came to the Welle's family, trouble was never far away... lol. I really liked Amber's character. She was a little straight laced but still very much relatable with all the fears and insecurities most women her age have. But I loved her rational thinking. This thing with River wasn't instalove ... not by a long shot although feelings were obviously there. Amber was fully aware that her time in Ireland was limited and that nothing could come of this growing connection with River in the long term and so she was going to enjoy it for what it was and tick off some of the items on her travel bucket list that she created with Alex before she left home. In fact this would tick off "have an affair with a foreigner" perfectly... lol.
By the time I hear the tear of the foil wrapper, I feel like I've been waiting an eternity.
By the time he pushes into me... I feel like I've known him forever.
Reconnecting with some of my favourite characters from previous books in the series (including Alex and Sheriff Welle's who made a fatherly appearance) really helped to bring a familiarity to Amber and River's story which I loved. Equally there were some secondary characters who stole my heart and piqued my interest. I'm really hoping that Rowan and Ivy get their own books. I can only imagine how brilliant their stories will be.
So what didn't quite hit the mark for me? Well, "Chasing River" started off really well with an opening that had me itching for more. However, the pace then slow down considerably with the focus shifting from River and Amber to the history behind the troubles in Ireland and the political unrest that is still present today. In fact there were moments for me where there was so much emphasis put on the unrest that the romance kinda got drowned out and my attention was lost. This book took me four days to read. A K.A Tucker book never takes me more than a day to finish so I guess that's saying something. I needed more from the romance side of things. I wanted that fluttery butterfly feeling. I wanted nervous anticipation. I wanted my emotions to be put through the ringer but that got kinda lost amongst the sub plot.
Luckily, the pace did pick up in the last quarter and I couldn't read fast enough to see how this story would end because I honestly couldn't predict which way it would go. I'm so glad this author kept the outcome realistic for the characters we were given and I'm so thankful for another beautiful epilogue.
So I guess all in all this was an okay read but not a "blow your mind" read but that's just me. I know others who loved the book and felt it was one of the author's best. Horses for courses I guess. I rated "Chasing River" ❤️❤️❤️❤️ to ❤️❤️❤️❤️
I inhale sharply, the air hissing through my gritted teeth. I watch him lay the long cylindrical tube down in the grass with careful movements and dread washes over me.
Jesus, Aengus. You’ve gone too far this time.
Hopping to his feet, he snatches up the satchel and charges toward me, his cell phone in his palm, his head revolving as he scans the emptiness around us. I square my shoulders and brace myself for a collision with his temper, as swift and nasty as a black adder’s bite.
“Are you insane?” I bark when he’s within easy earshot.
The glint in his eyes—the color of an overripe avocado, beginning to rot—would suggest exactly that.
“You said no one would get hurt.”
“Do you see anyone around to get hurt?” he snarls, continuing past me, punching keys into his phone. “You’ve got exactly sixty seconds to get the fuck out of here, River.” He takes off at a light jog, not waiting to see if I’ll follow.
Because I always have.
Oh, fuck me. A current of adrenaline shoots through my core. I glance down at my watch. One minute. Less, now. Fifty-five seconds, give or take. The muscles in my thighs twitch, ready to tear after Aengus because there’s nothing else for me to do. But a lot can happen in just sixty seconds. My conscience keeps me grounded, my wild eyes scouring the paths around me for signs of life. A jogger bobs along in the distance, so far away that I can’t be sure whether it’s male or female. Otherwise, I see no one.
I glance at my watch again, my heartbeat doing double time with each second that passes. Only forty-five remain before I look damn guilty to whoever finds me here. Unless I rat out Aengus— which will never happen—I’m as good as locked up for this.
I need to run.
Except . . . that perimeter set isn’t wide enough. If someone should come around the bend, cut across the field . . . But what can I do, really?
Thirty seconds. Beads of sweat trickle down my back. I need to get the hell out of here. Now.
I turn, intent on going back the way I came. But movement catches my eye and my stomach drops as I watch the very thing I just feared unravel before my eyes. A girl runs through the field, her attention alternating between her wrist and the unfolded map within her grip, her brow pulled tight with worry.
She’s clearly a tourist.
She’s clearly late for something.
And she’s heading directly into the blast radius of the pipe bomb that’s about to explode.
I’m out of time. I don’t have a choice.
I run. As fast as my legs can carry me, I run.
About K.A. Tucker:
Born in small-town Ontario, K.A. Tucker published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.
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Giveaway: papaerback set of the series