RITA Reader Challenge Review

RITA Reader Challenge Review: Her Singapore Fling by Kelly Hunter

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Title: Her Singapore Fling
Author: Kelly Hunter
Publication Info: Harlequin 2010
ISBN: 978-0373528073
Genre: Contemporary Romance

RITA®, and the RITA statuette are service marks of Romance Writers of America, Inc.This RITA® Reader Challenge was written by Kate, who likes the Mills & Boon Modern Heat title for this book, “Red Hot Renegade” much better than “Her Singapore Fling.” I completely agree.

Book CoverPlot Summary: In desperate need of protection, Jianne Xang-Bennett reluctantly turns to her estranged husband, martial arts expert Jacob Bennett, for help. But there are problems: they’ve been separated for twelve years and cannot be in the same room together without arguing or ripping each other’s clothes off—often at the same time!

But Jacob will go to extremes for those he loves, and Jianne is the only woman who can bring this honorable warrior to his knees. Can they delve beneath their red-hot desire and blazing anger to find the love that has always been hiding?

And here is Kate’s review:

Okay, got a synopsis? Jianne and Jake married young – and insecure – so it wasn’t a big surprise to either of them with Jianne left. Twelve years have passed, and coincidence (or fate?) has landed them in the same place at the same time. Jianne is in trouble, and she knows Jake can help her, but she’s reluctant to ask. Jake wants to help, but he’s reluctant to let Jianne too close. But danger is everywhere, and they’re both going to have to get over their reluctance and find a way to work things out. And hopefully get it right this time.

What makes it worth reading? Pretty much everything. This was a tight, hot, story, and I was in it from beginning to end. In fact, I stayed up waaay too late last night promising myself that I would go to sleep as soon as I hit the next chapter end, only to find myself turning just one more page.

I don’t normally go in for reunited-couple story – the author has to work really hard to make me believe in the HEA because the couple has already been through the initial excitement, when everything is new and fresh, and what may appear to outsiders to be character flaws are doted upon and adored. There are no rose-coloured glasses, and I have to have reasons why this time, things are going to be different. Kelly did a really good job with this, and I believed fully that both Jake and Jianne had grown into adults and were prepared for their adult relationship. I believed that when things got tough, Jake wasn’t going to play the martyr, and Ji wasn’t going to run away. It was very emotionally satisfying.

Any quibbles? The villain in this piece was a bit too villainous with no real motive for being so (and when we do finally meet him, he didn’t live up to expectation). Also the big drama at the end had a pat resolution that seemed very convenient. But these are nitpicky. See the above answer.

Recommended? Definitely. A press-into-the-hands-of-disbelievers example of excellent category romance.


This book is available from Amazon | Kindle | BN & nook | WORD Brooklyn | eHarlequin.com | AllRomance

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    HelenMac says:

    Oooh, sounds good. Although I prob will pick this up, I’ve got a question for Kate (or anyone else who has read this): how important to the story/authentic is Jianne’s Asian-ness?
    Thank you.

  2. 2
    Yes, No, Maybe says:

    I’m very happy to see Harlequin’s editors introducing diversity and upping quality output in their series romance. Lately I’ve had more positive experiences with their books then ever before. Anyone else feel that way?

  3. 3

    Loved, loved this book! Totally agree with the review and hope it wins the RITA.

    HelenMac – Jianne’s Asianness is critical to both the plot and her character.  I loved the setting.  It made me want to visit Singapore, a city my parents deeply enjoyed.

  4. 4
    persnickety says:

    Hmm, this positive review actually may make me read this.  It’s been sitting on my Kindle for about 3 months (husband got it for me) and every time I see the title I think “no”  so will now give it a try

  5. 5
    Katydidinoz says:

    @HelenMac Ji’s Asian-ness plays a large part in the backstory, but also adds cultural relevance to the current story. So it’s important. However, it’s very much NOT ‘look at how culturally diverse this story is! Isn’t it entertaining how culturally diverse people are!’ which tends to drive me nuts :)

  6. 6
    alicet says:

    I loved this book. I should add that this is the last book on a series on the Bennet family whose books were set in exotic locales. The previous book to this one was a very enjoyable book and could add some backstory to this one. I highly recommend Untameable Rogue which had Jake’s brother as the hero and also set in Singapore.

  7. 7
    Shash says:

    Although I am very embarassed to read category romances I might try this one out. I think the Asian heroine clinched the deal (I have many Singaporean friends).

  8. 8
    Lynn S. says:

    Category romance doesn’t get any better than this.  Tight focus, strong characterization, great use of location, and, although the suspense element veers towards melodrama at the end, it never overtakes the central romantic purpose of the story.  The book can easily be read as a stand alone but it’s even better if you read Untameable Rogue first. If this one wins I’ll be squeeing which, if you knew me, will be a rare and probably scary sight.

    Only problem, why oh why the name change Harlequin?

  9. 9
    HelenMac says:

    Thank you for the reassurance, Diane and katydidinoz.
    I too hate “look at how culturally diverse this story is! Isn’t it entertaining how culturally diverse people are!” Along with its evil cousin “look the main characters are totally ethnic and exotic and woah, but lol, only in looks, because writing authentic cultural characteristic is totally hard, yanno?!” … can you tell I’ve been burned recently? :-/ (Burned, and personally offended – I’m half Chinese)
    Will be adding this (and the prequel) to my TBR mountain.

    p.s. Diane, you totally should visit Singapore,…and Hong Kong, too! (why, yes I *am* totally biased, but if you’re going to go all that way, you should make the most of it, no?)

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