They don’t make them like they used to

Romance novels were very big with the girls in my high school, and it was then when I read all the Judith McNaught and Julie Garwood romance novels I could get my hands on. These days, I’ve outgrown the romance novel phase, but I still read them once in a while, for that happily-ever-after fix.
Judith McNaught’s Every Breath You Take (book #77 for 2009) came out in 2005, way after I finished high school, but I didn’t get myself a copy until recently, because it was available on BookMooch.  

The book takes us back to Chicago, back where McNaught’s popular Paradise is set. William Wyatt, grandson of wealthy philanthropist goes missing, and the police suspect foul play, casting suspicion on William’s estranged half-brother, Mitchell Wyatt.

Kate Donovan meets Mitchell Wyatt on the tropical island of Anguilla, and a romantic encounter develops between them. Kate soon finds herself entangled in a web of deception and a high-profile murder, and must struggle to keep herself and her loved ones alive.

I’m not particularly keen on how Judith McNaught (and Julie Garwood) have left behind their old styles and jumped towards writing romance thrillers. I’m a romance purist, because when I read a romance novel, it’s really for the gushy, awwww-inducing sappiness of it and I don’t really appreciate how they’ve complicated it.

Every Breath You Take does have some Judith McNaught trademarks – the momentous one-liners (usually containing the title of the book), the to-die-for leading man, the spirited female, and the good dynamics between the leads, but you have to read through all the high-drama murder to get to the good parts.

There’s another Judith McNaught novel that came out fairly recently but I haven’t read yet: Someone to Watch Over Me. There’s actually a hardcover copy of it waiting in my TBR pile, but I’m not looking forward to it because it’s another romance thriller and the plot sounds more complicated than I’m willing to commit to.

Sigh. They really don’t make romance novels like they used to.

My copy: mass market paperback, local mooch, upgraded into hardcover with dust jacket, mooched from the US

My rating: 3/5 stars