Robards’ latest romantic thriller has all the requisite components—a sexy cop, a robbery, a mob boss and a million bucks in a duffle bag—but the snail-like pacing is deadlier than the glock in our heroine’s hand.
Having just walked out on her cheating boyfriend, Mick escapes to her “Uncle” Nicco’s empty mansion on Lake Michigan. When she hears rumbling downstairs, she grabs her police-issue gun and stumbles into a robbery. The crooks are loading up unmarked millions, but as Mick begins to arrest the bad guys, her attention is momentarily diverted—out of the safe fall photos that incriminate Nicco in a notorious political murder. Nicco’s guards come running to rescue Mick, but after seeing the photos, she’s not sure she’s safe anymore in the bosom of vipers (how she didn’t know Uncle Nicco was a mob boss, considering her work in law enforcement, his “construction” empire and the FBI case on him, is hard to fathom). When the getaway van escapes without its mastermind, Mick and cat burglar Jason must fend for themselves on a freezing New Year’s night. The novel spans only a few days, but in that time they are chased on the lake by Nicco’s goons (who think Mick has been kidnapped), are lost in the woods during a snowstorm, forced to hide out in a deer stand (things get cozy), are kidnapped by dirty cops and then barely escape a gun battle with Nicco’s guys before they get in Jason’s plane headed for Grand Cayman. And that’s not even the end. Along the way the two admit to a mutual attraction that both boosts their spirits and keeps hypothermia at bay. All of this sounds sexy and exciting, but at each step forward Robards halts the action with needless description, ruining what fun could be had when an uptight cop falls in love with a hunky thief.