Author: Karrie Roman
Publisher: NineStar Press
Length: 179 Pages
At a Glance: Overall, I was very impressed by this debut novel, though in places I wish it had been fleshed out a little bit more.
Reviewed By: Jules
Blurb: Detective Jack Mitchell is not a people person. After fourteen years dealing with the monsters of society, he has learned to keep people at arm’s length. Failing is his biggest frustration, and on the case of his career, he is having no luck hunting down a copycat serial killer…or the one man who survived the original case.
Six years ago, Will Blaikie was taken by a monster who changed his life forever. Narrowly surviving, he has become a prisoner in his own home. Friendless and alone, he watches in horror as a new monster emerges who only wants to copy the murderous deeds of Will’s monster…including taking Will.
When these two men are thrown together, and the monster comes for them both, one must learn to feel safe and protected, and the other must learn to feel love and peace.
Review: I went back and forth with myself for quite some time before finally deciding to grab this one. Ultimately, I couldn’t ignore the draw I had to the gorgeous cover—Natasha Snow does such beautiful work—or the fact that the author has a pic of a black kitty on her NineStar Press bio page. I’m not kidding! That was the deciding factor. So, thank you, Lu!
In all seriousness, though, Saved, by Karrie Roman, turned out to be such a good read. One of those pleasant surprise books that, though it wasn’t perfect, you want to tell other people to take a chance on, too. There could have been more character development and a bit of fleshing out, and it lacked a little polish and depth—particularly in the first half—but I liked the storyline very much. And, the writing seemed much stronger in the second half; there was less telling, and more showing, and I felt like everything started to come together.
I ended up liking the two MCs a lot. Jack is much different than he initially seems. When we meet him, he definitely comes across as a hothead, and a bit of a loose cannon. Once you get to know him, however, you realize how different he is than how he appears on the outside. There is much more to him. We see what a great friend and work partner he is. We get a couple of glimpses into his life—he had a grandpa who sounded absolutely amazing. And, we see how much Will softens him. In the book, Jack alludes to feeling peaceful around Will. I like that. I liked seeing the softer side of him. There is no doubt as to what kind of detective he is. It’s obvious he cares a lot about the case, and catching this killer; he’s a beast when it comes to the job. So, it was good to see him accepting and getting to know Will.
I looooooooved Will. It takes some time to peel back his layers, and see his true mettle. But, once you get to know him, you see this incredibly strong, brave, resilient fighter. He was amazing. To go through what he’s been through and come out the other side, and to face what he faces in this book, takes the kind of fortitude I can only begin to imagine. Will just wants to be ‘normal’, to experience love. He has never had a relationship, or really experienced intimacy, and he absolutely craves those things. I was not at all surprised when he fell hard for his protector, Jack.
“Never had he felt so close, so intimate with another person. It was a heady feeling. Knowing he could share anything with Jack without fear of mockery or rejection, feeling absolutely safe with another human being both physically and emotionally was something to be treasured.”
I liked these guys together. Their getting-to-know-you phase happened while Jack was staying at Will’s as his security detail, and I did find the relationship development a little bit lacking. There were moments and intimate conversations that were alluded to, and which I would have really liked to see much more of on the page, but, ultimately, I did fall for them as a couple. Roman definitely pulls off the power and emotion of what they feel for each other during the climax and final parts of the story.
Overall, I was very impressed by this debut novel. Though, as I said, in places I wish it had been fleshed out a little bit more, it was totally gripping and suspenseful. The second half was especially fast-paced and tension-filled, and had me on the edge of my seat. So glad I picked this one up. Give it a shot, guys! And, keep your eyes peeled for new stuff from this author. I feel like she’s going to be one to look out for!
You can buy Saved here: