Monday, August 5, 2013

Liza O'Connor Reviews Wild Horses by D'Ann Lindun

Today, I'm reviewing D'Ann Lindun's book Wild Horses.

To be fair to this very fine book, I'm reviewing four aspects of it.

1) As a romance novel

2) As a mystery/suspense novel

3) As a story about the wild mustangs and the threat of extinction.

4) and by the many characters she stuffed inside it's digital pages.

So let me touch on those in no particular order.
The coming extinction of Wild Mustangs.

First, here's a video to introduce you to them.


D'Ann does a fabulous job providing a fair assessment of the situation by allowing various people state their opinions. 


The wild horses in the title are wild mustangs. The plot centers around the government's handling of wild horses living on government property. They've taken to rounding them up for 'auction'.  However, when no one wants to buy the wild horse for $125, they can be sold to slaughterhouses that sell the meat overseas.


This story is about how far people will go to protect the wild mustangs and how far others will go to make a buck and the complex issues that create a thousand different stands in between those diverse bookends. 

In my opinion, D'Ann did an excellent job presenting the different views.

Within this interesting real life issue, she embeds  a great many three dimensional characters, some with minor roles, some not seen, but spoken of so vividly that they  become real as well, and then of course the hero and heroine. A great deal of the characters are not who they claim to be. That includes the hero, Jake, who is actually a FBI agent but pretends to be an IRS agent. 

(Nope, I'm not making that up.)

There's also a bucket load of betrayals which have occurred or do occur in the story among many of the characters. And for some second chances are given, while others just have to live with their regrets.

And finally, for a HEA, order up a boatload of forgiveness.

While these three emotional issues: lies, betrayals, and forgiveness play heavily with our main couple, the same issues impact the minor characters too.

Again, D'Ann does a fabulous job rendering the emotions true to the characters.

And finally there is a mystery to solve:
What has happened to the heroine, Castana's brother?
Is he alive or dead?
Is he a murderer or victim of greed?
What about the other dead people?
Who is the pregnant blonde living in her brother's house? Who are the girl's at the lake. Who are the people in the rescue squad?

Everyone you meet seems a potential culprit for the murders and attempted murders, given their complex lives tainted with deceit and motives.

And this is where I had my only issue with the story: I could not figure out 'whodunit'. I'm usually really good at tagging the culprit and thus end a mystery with smug satisfaction that I had guessed correctly early on. 

I had several convoluted reasons why it might be XY&Z, but then 95% through the book it turned out to be Q. I never saw it coming, and that pisses me off. It could be because I'm sleep deprived and brain dead, or because D'Ann hide the real culprit until the end.

But here I am weeks later after I read it, and I still resent the whodunnit. Thus, even though I enjoyed every moment of this book and highly recommend it, I cannot give the mystery part 5 stars. I did not get my normal of swelling of pride for figuring out the truth. 

Let's recap:

It's main job: Romance- Slam dunk 5 stars
It's handling of a Real Life issue?  5 stars
Character Development: a fab 5 stars
Mystery Whodunit: 4 stars. 

Thus, I have to give this a 4.75, but since nobody lets me have percentiles, it still rounds to

So why did I bother with all the math?
And is it fair to ding D'Ann because I've possibly become brain dead?
I don't know.

All I know is I loved this book while I was reading it until I reached 95% (on my kindle) at which point, the culprits turned out to be a completely believable choice, but one I hadn't considered and thus while I was completely satisfied with the story, the romance, and the ending, I resented the fact I had not guessed the whodunnit. 

Thus, it is imperative you buy this book. First, because it's a fabulous book and you will enjoy it and second because I need to know if I'm brain dead or not.

Here are the links:



Feel free to leave a comment.
Tell me I'm obsessing over a nit. Ask me if I'd read this book again (I would). Opps, I answered that. Ask me something else.

17 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. No. Thank you, for writing such an entertaining book.

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  2. I like when I can't figure out the ending or the mystery. Those events make the story more enjoyable for me. Wonderful review. I love D'Ann's books!

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    1. So you think I've let my vanity mar D'Ann's rating...sigh, That could be. (Could thing I rounded up)

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  3. Oh this was a great story, Liza! I am so glad you got to read it!

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    Replies
    1. I've been reading a lot of great stories recently.

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  4. Replies
    1. Thank you Tera. I have so little time to read, that I'm very picky and then once I read them, mull my thoughts for weeks, and then try to assess the book differently than anyone else has. It's a very hard task, which I refuse to do for anything less than a 4.5.

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  5. Loved the book...and Liza...Love your reviews!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Nikki, given you are the queen of reviews, I take that as a great compliment.

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  6. Liza, what a fabulous review!
    Congratulations, D'Ann!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Brenda. I feared my vanity had got in the was of fairness on this one.

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  7. Thanks again, everyone, for the wonderful comments!

    ReplyDelete

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