Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Smash Cut, by Sandra Brown; Tough Customer, by Sandra Brown

I've said it many times:  I will pick up and start reading anything.  Most of the time, I enjoy whatever it is and am pleased with my decision to read it.  Occasionally I am thrilled to find a new series or author to add to my ever-growing list of "must-reads."  Rarely does it happen that I regret reading anything.  I may dislike the book, or the author, or the story, but I rarely truly regret reading a novel. 

I borrowed a copy of Sandra Brown's Smash Cut from my mother-in-law.  I've read other novels by Brown and, while not my favorites, they were enjoyable enough.  I considered Brown to be a fairly decent author and her books have been good enough that I would read one when my favorites were between new releases.  Smash Cut was one of the more difficult books for me to finish.  I'm not sure why.  The plot was decent enough, despite being predictable.  The characters were realistic.  It was the type of story I typically enjoy.  There was suspense, murder, romance, etc.  It just fell flat for me this time.  It may have been because the one mystery that wasn't explained in the first half of the novel was the least important.  It could have been my mindset at the time.  I don't know.  I do know that I struggled to finish it.  I would find excuses to put the book down.  I actually read another book while reading this one.  Three days after starting it, I finally finished it.  I felt more relief for having completed it than anything else.

To convince myself that Smash Cut was an anomaly, I began reading the sequel, Tough Customer.  It doesn't continue the entire story, but carries on the characters.  I found it even harder to make myself read and finish.  It seems to me that Brown was nearing her deadline and forced a book that wasn't ready out to print.  It took me longer to finish Tough Customer than it did Smash Cut

I have taken Sandra Brown off my list of back-up authors.  I am sure that, in the future, I will read something of hers and enjoy it, but that day will be a while in coming.  It doesn't happen often, but I have to admit that I regret reading Tough Customer.  I disliked Smash Cut, but it was my own fault that I picked up and began reading Tough Customer. 

If you read or have read either of these, I hope you enjoyed them more than I did.  If you want to check them out for yourself, Smash Cut is here on Barnes and Noble and here on Amazon.  Tough Customer is here on Barnes and Noble and here on Amazon.


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