TW: The main character was sexually assaulted in her past, but this is only discussed obliquely in the book.
It’s almost laughable at this point that I’m still reviewing Laura Griffin books. I could save everyone time and just write a one-liner: great book, read it. I really like these books.
Deep Tide focuses on a character I’ve really enjoyed in this series: Leyla Breda. Her brothers were the heroes in the other books and I enjoyed them when they found their HEAs, but in this one, they were often a little one dimensional with some macho protective stuff that I find repellant.
Leyla is bracing, driven, shaken by the event at the start of the book (one of her employees is murdered while on shift), open and truly likable. Her love interest, FBI agent Sean Moran, is NOT all macho protective nonsense. Yes, he wants to protect her and take care of her, but first and foremost he adores her. He also doesn’t stand in her way when she wants to do things. It’s a careful balance that Leyla and Sean maintain.
Sean is in town to very quietly investigate alleged criminals meeting in Lost Beach. There is a possible connection between the murder of Leyla’s employee, a shipment of cellphones, a tech CEO and a cartel or two. As with all of Griffin’s books, the suspense is first class. I particularly enjoyed the tech element of this one as it felt fresh. The suspense plot is a little tangled and at times I wasn’t quite sure where it was going, but it got there in the end.
Honestly, part of what I love about these books is that they’re well-written, have great characters, satisfying plots and a twist or two, but they aren’t going to be so intense that they upset my emotional equilibrium. They are the solid, reliable friend who will never let me down. That kind of consistently engaging and dependable reading experience is a treasure for me.
With two brothers on the police force, Leyla Breda is well aware of the rising crime in her small beach town, but she never expected it to show up on her doorstep. When Leyla finds one of her employees murdered in the alley behind her coffee shop, she’s deeply shaken, and as a new law enforcement officer in town begins to circle her place of business, her instincts only sharpen.
Sean Moran is on an undercover The seaside community of Lost Beach may look like a picturesque postcard, but his team suspects it’s a point of intersection for several crime syndicates that the FBI has been investigating for years. Even so, when the brash and beautiful Leyla Breda starts bossing him around, he’s immediately intrigued. He knows her brothers want him to back off, but every time he sees her, he feels more of a spark.
Leyla’s connections in the local community and Sean’s skills allow them to go deeper into the case together than they would be able to go alone. But when a single crime spirals into something much darker, Sean’s carefully planned mission takes a deadly turn.
Romantic Suspense, Romance
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I haven’t read this one yet but I will by the end of the week. Your review sums up why Laura Griffith is an autobuy preorder for me. I trust her. She entertains. She doesn’t insult. I like her characters who are intelligent and not TSTL. She has jeopardy but it’s not overwhelming when my anxiety is high. She helps me relax instead. I repeat, I trust her and am always thrilled when a new title happens to appear on my Kindle (those preorders you know).
Great review. I too love Laura’s books. She balances suspense and romance so well. And she puts in the research needed. She is a preorder for me as soon as she has one coming. Had this one on my kindle when I woke up.
Is the suspense of the non-gory variety?
I’ve been enjoying this series as well. It hits my sweet spot between not-too-cozy and not-too-gruesome. Thanks for the heads-up that the new book is out. Hoopla has the audio version and I’m off to borrow it.
I agree 100% that Laura Griffin is an auto-buy, for all the reasons mentioned in the review. Her heroines are consistently excellent. I can’t wait to read this one.
Does anyone have recommendations for other authors like her? The closest I’ve found is Toni Anderson. Thanks!
Laura Griffin is an auto buy for me too. I’ve loved all her books and would love to see more stories involving the Delphi Center. There’s a recurring character in some of her Tracers series. He’s a paint or auto specialist at Delphi and also a ladies man. Give that guy a book with a smart FBI/Detective woman that show him a thing or two!
@LML I would describe the gore as quite minimal, but I do have a tendency to skip over the gore, so I’m not sure I’m a good judge…
@Susan: Agreed! I love the Tracers series (set around the Delphi Center). I think in her more recent books heroines and heroes and others are a bit more two-dimensional. I liked the complexities of some of the characters in the Tracers books (like heroes who can be totally petty on a bad day). But I still read all of her books, so apparently even when I think the characters are a bit more like stock figures, I’m happy to read her books.