Monday, September 16, 2013

Blog Tour: Declan's Cross (Sharpe & Donovan #3) by Carla Neggers


Declan's Cross (Sharpe & Donovan #3) by Carla Neggers
Contemporary romantic suspense
Hardcover/eBook, 320 pages
Published August 27th 2013 by Harlequin MIRA (first published January 1st 2013)

An escape to an idyllic Irish seaside village is about to turn deadly in this riveting new novel by master of romantic suspense Carla Neggers.

For marine biologist Julianne Maroney, two weeks in tiny Declan’s Cross on the south Irish coast is a chance to heal her broken heart. She doesn’t expect to attract the attention of FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan— especially since a Donovan is the reason for her broken heart. Emma and Colin are in Ireland for their own personal retreat. Colin knows he’s a reminder of everything Julianne wants to escape but something about her trip raises his suspicion. Emma, an art crimes expert, is also on edge. Of all the Irish villages Julianne could choose… Why Declan’s Cross?

Ten years ago, a thief slipped into a mansion in Declan’s Cross. Emma’s grandfather, a renowned art detective, investigated, but the art stolen that night has never been recovered and the elusive thief never caught.

From the moment Julianne sets foot on Irish soil, everything goes wrong. The well-connected American driver who invited her to Ireland has disappeared. And now Emma and Colin are in Declan’s Cross.

As a dark conspiracy unfolds amid the breathtaking scenery of Declan’s Cross, the race is on to stop a ruthless killer…and the stakes have never been more personal for Emma and Colin.

Praise for Carla Neggers

"Heron's Cove gives romantic suspense fans what they want...complex mystery with a bit of romance. Negger's skillfully created a compelling puzzle, refusing to reveal all the pieces until the very end."
- Top Pick, RT Book Reviews

"Once in a while, a writer who's been at it seemingly forever reaches a new pinnacle. Such is the case with Carla Neggers in her latest superb adventure of romantic suspense!"
- Providence Journal

"Carla Neggers has emerged as the queen of the romantic suspense novel...Heron's Cove is a novel that is written with a gripping and suspenseful style that will surely have the most astute armchair sleuths and amateur detectives scratching their heads and guessing right up until the very end. Neggers does a first-rate job of creating scenes with images that are so vivid, one can almost breathe in the briny salt air along Maine's craggy coast.”
- Nashua Sunday Telegraph

About the author:
Carla Neggers

Carla Neggers is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 60 novels, with translations in 24 languages. Born and raised on the western edge of the beautiful Quabbin Reservoir in rural Massachusetts, Carla grew up with tales of her father’s life as a Dutch sailor and her mother’s childhood in northwest Florida.

At a young age, Carla began penning her own stories on a branch high up in her favorite sugar maple. Now she enjoys spending time at the family homestead (now a tree farm) with her six brothers and sisters and their families. When she’s not writing, Carla loves to travel, hike, kayak, garden, and, of course, dive into a good book. She lives with her family in Vermont, near Quechee Gorge.

I have not traveled to Ireland yet but after reading Declan's Cross by Carla Neggers, I feel that I have. This mystery author imbues her writing with minute details of everyday living in a small town on the Emerald Isle and I forgot I was reading a book. Speaking of books, this title is the third in the Sharpe & Donovan series. I also have not read any of those books so that may be the reason why it took me a little longer to actually get into the story.

No worry though for once I did comprehend the who and the what, I sat back and tried my best to enjoy my stay at Declan's Cross. Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan are FBI agents on holiday. Colin heads to Ireland for some needed rest after his last case didn't wrap up as planned. His near death experience has him facing an important decision about the rest of his life and his role with the bureau. His friend Emma goes with him. I understood these two have feelings for each other but with their working relationship, things are complicated. A friend, Julianne Maroney, a marine biologist arrives at Declan's Cross to begin her new life. She was hired for a position at a marine station. The truth is Julianne has run away to nurse her heart broken by a different Donovan man. When the woman who hired her, Lindsey, doesn't show up at the airport, Julianne begins to wonder about her new boss. When Emma and Colin learn that Julianne is at the quaint seaside village, they head over for a visit. Little do they know what their stay will entail.

When Lindsey's body is discovered, a murder investigation begins. The FBI agents get involved. Family histories, stolen art work, romantic attachments, and secrets all come to light in this involved murder mystery.

Is there a conspiracy? Where is the art stolen a decade ago? Shifting from the past to the present, from Ireland to America, there is a lot happening in this story. The plot is intricately woven with numerous threads and various characters. There are working relationships, romantic couplings, past associations, all coming into play at Declan's Cross. I believe I would have connected more with the characters if I had read the first two books in the series. There were areas where I felt I was missing something details or information. That was my fault but I did jump at the chance to read this book by such an acclaimed author. I loved her attention to detail and description and the plotting of such an expansive story encompassing two continents was no easy feat. 

I enjoyed my stay at Declan's Cross and need to return by picking up the rest of this intriguing series. 

Rating: 4

Cover comment:
The soothing purple and green and that water really drew me to this cover. The woman walking captures the essence of the story and the stone work of what could be a cave entrance or archway gives the art a sense of history. I really like this cover. Very effective and visually stunning.

Book source:
I received a promotional copy in return for my honest review during a blog tour.

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