Danger Zone (Adrenaline Highs, #2)by Dee J. Adams Published 01 Jan 1970
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In her ten-year career as a stuntwoman, Ellie Morgan has experienced her share of thrills. None compares to the rush of being behind the wheel of a race car for her latest movie shoot. Certain she was born to race, Ellie's ready to shift gears—but a secret from her past holds her back.
Quinn Reynolds is tired of being in the driver's seat of his family's company, Formula Racing Design. He's ready to sell—if he can get his co-owner and brother, Mac, to agree. Quinn's not sure what he wants to do with his future, but almost as soon as he meets Ellie, he knows he wants her to be part of it.
Though Ellie tries to resist her attraction to the charming businessman, she's quickly in danger of losing her heart. But after narrowly escaping "accidents" both on and off the set, it becomes clear that getting involved with Quinn could be downright deadly...
"Danger Zone (Adrenaline Highs, #2)" Reviews
Danger Zone by Dee J. Adams has all of the high-octane excitement of a hot Hollywood car chase movie. And so it should. But Adams' story is much, much better, because Danger Zone is terrific romantic suspense, and more than satisfies on both the romantic and the suspenseful sides.
Quinn Reynolds has flown all the way from London to Hollywood to deliver an ultimatum to his older brother, Mac. Two years ago, Mac dropped the running of their business, Formula One Design, in Quinn's lap, while Mac returned to the U.S. to lead the pit crew for his wife's racing team.
Trace Bradshaw, Mac's wife, is a top racer on the Formula Circuit in the U.S. Mac and Trace are in Hollywood filming her life story, which includes not just a horrific and nearly life-ending accident, but also a crazed and murderous stalker. The movie (and Adams' first book - Trace's and Mac's story) is titled Dangerous Race (reviewed here).
Mac is busy when Quinn shows up on the set. Mac is always busy. It's the story of their lives. Mac has acted more as Quinn's father than his brother. While waiting around for Mac and watching the movie sets, Quinn literally bumps into Ellie Morgan, the stuntwoman playing the role of Trace in all the racing (and fighting and nearly dying) scenes of the movie.
Ellie is the first woman Quinn has felt attracted to since his own car accident six months previously. Ellie's the first person who has made him feel anything good since that accident. Even though Quinn is only going to be in L.A. for two weeks, he pursues Ellie relentlessly, just like the playboy he used to be.
Ellie doesn't want a playboy. And she doesn't do casual relationships. Even though she is very attracted to Quinn, she knows she isn't capable of giving her body to a man without letting him into her heart. And since Quinn will only be around for a couple of weeks, any relationship they might have is doomed from the start.
But Ellie's roommate Ashley thinks that Ellie should let herself have a good time, just for once. Even more than that, Ashley thinks that Quinn is "the One". The real one for Ellie, in spite of his playboy manners and his seeming wealth. Quinn has a limo and a driver, while Ellie and Ashley share an apartment. Ellie and Quinn couldn't be more different.
But Ellie has a secret. Ashley is her lifeline. Ashley allows her to function. Because Ellie is dyslexic.
Quinn's never made a secret of why he is in L.A. He wants, no he demands that Mac let him sell their company. They each own half, so they have to agree. Mac was a Formula racer before he had an accident. Then he ran the company until he met Trace and dropped it on Quinn. Mac loves cars and racing. Quinn's made the company a success, but he doesn't love it and never has. He wants out. But big brother won't discuss the issue.
Meanwhile, someone is in L.A. stalking Quinn, because he wants to make sure the "right" company buys that company. That stalker starts staging "accidents" in order to take Quinn out of the picture. But he keeps missing Quinn and gets Ellie's roommate Ashley instead. Without her lifeline, with her best friend in the hospital in a coma, Ellie turns to Quinn.
But can they survive long enough to learn each others secrets?
Escape Rating A: What makes Danger Zone so good are the people and their relationships. Quinn and Ellie are folks you would like to know in real life, you feel for them and the issues they deal with. Their romance is plenty hot and steamy, and it's fun to watch them court and spark, but the author also made them easy to empathize with.
Dyslexia is a difficult problem for many people. Ellie fear of revealing her secret and the ridicule she will potentially face is made real for the reader. And there's irony in that. If I suffered from dyslexia, how difficult would it be for me to read Ellie's story?
I hope the next book in this series (Dangerously Close) is Ashley's book. I really like that girl, and she so deserves her own happily ever after!
This is a hard review to write. I really loved book #1 in this series, Dangerous Race, and this book didn't quite measure up to the quality of that book. It was entertaining and was a riveting read, but there were a few things that interfered with my overall rating on the book.
What I liked:
*this book is HOT. Dee's descriptions of Quinn during those intimate scenes...whoa! just...whoa!!
*The action sequences in this book are WONDERFUL. So well-written. They definitely get your adrenaline going...and you're just the reader!
*okay, I loved, loved, LOVED Mac from book 1, Dangerous Race. In this book, he is a jerk. He and Quinn are at complete odds through this book, but I liked that conflict. It made Quinn a more real person.
*the secrets that both of these characters are hiding worked for me. I thought that they really enhanced the story line.
*I loved Quinn's overwhelming reactions when Ellie is in danger (see the first point above...hehe.) This is a guy that when he gets emotional, he goes all alpha and it is sexy as hell.
*I was hooked on the book. It kept me completely engaged and I did not want to put it down once the story started ramping up.
*LOVED Quinn's character...just everything about him. My heart aches for him and his issues growing up and with Mac.
What I disliked:
*it took a while for the story to get going, for me personally. I would have liked it more if the action or even hints of the action were made earlier in the book.
*there were points within the story where the dialogue seemed a bit cliche'd...and I realize some of that was done on purpose. Ellie is always giving Quinn a hard time about his playboy ways. There were just moments where I was rolling my eyes at the dialogue or inner-dialogues of the characters.
*At times the conflict just seemed too easy and contrived, but that is most definitely a personal, subjective thing (as are ALL parts of these reviews...hehe)
*I wasn't a huge fan of Ellie's character. Honestly, I have no idea why except for how long she put off Quinn. I just wanted to kick her when she continued to see him as a playboy. I know that it's easy to sit as a reader and "see" it all, but she took too long to come around for my way of thinking.
I still consider myself to be a fan of Dee's writing. I cannot wait to see where she goes from here.
This is the second book in the series, but while we get to brush up against the characters we loved in Dangerous Race, this book works beautifully as a stand alone.
Ellie Morgan is a professional stuntwoman at the top of her game - except for one teensy handicap, that her best friend Ashley has helped her cover up since high school. She. Can't. Read. She's dyslexic, but nobody figured it out, just passed her along, while managing to trash her self-esteem by taunts and scoldings about how stupid she was.
When Quinn Reynolds comes onto her latest set, he makes an ass of himself. Later, there's incredible heat between the two of them, but... he's returning to England in two weeks, and Ellie doesn't do casual sex.
But when it seems someone is trying to kill him - or is it her? They find themselves thrown together in those adrenaline high situations that lead inevitably to bed.And love, even if that wasn't on the agenda, either.
This book moves, it includes some exciting stunts and very steamy sex between two people who find a way to make it work in the end.
What a Rush!
Being a stunt woman in Hollywood isn't the easiest or most reliable of occupations, but Ellie Morgan has built a solid reputation in her ten-year career. She's good at it. She enjoys it. But her newest gig as stunt double for the star of the movie about female race car driver Trace Bradshaw gave her the first opportunity to get behind the wheel of a race car. And the moment she's in the driver seat, screaming around the track at over a hundred miles an hour, Elle has a moment of perfect clarity. She knows, beyond question, what she was meant to do. She was born to race.
That thrill, that drive to follow a dream newly born but bright with hope, motivates Elle like nothing else. It makes her acknowledge that it's time for a change in her life. And it forces her to accept that to go in this particular direction with her career, she's going to have to tackle one particular demon that's haunted her since childhood.
But not before she wraps up this job, this movie.
Quinn Reynolds is fed up with his brother ducking him and he flew from London to California to tell him so, and to get Mac to finally agree to sell the company the brothers had inherited from their father. Quinn wants out. For two years he's slaved over that company, expanding it into the multi-million dollar industry leader that it is today, but Quinn's done. He's done with London. He's done with the company, and most important, he's done with the race cars they make and the entire sport of car racing. Facts he's more than willing to choke his brother with as soon as he gets him alone, a feat that seems far easier said than done.
Frustrated by his lack of success, desperate to unwind, he chats up a sexy blonde beauty at the bar he and his family had chosen to dine. Doesn't look like his luck is going any better with the fairer sex when she turns out to be the stunt woman doing all the dangerous stunts that his sister-in-law had lived through years ago. A stunt woman he had actually been introduced to that morning...and who had overheard him dish out to the lead actress the same cheesy line he'd just used on her.
So...it's California...where are all those earthquakes when you need the ground to open up and swallow you?
While the dance between a persistent man and a resistant woman heats up, a dark presence observes from the shadows. Plotting, planning, and fueled by rage, his target will have to be eliminated. And if that target can't seem to be more than five feet from the blonde floozy at any given time, he'll off her too. He will not be denied. Regardless of how much blood he has to spill or how many lives he has to take to get what he wants.
Dee J. Adams is back with another high octane romantic suspense that delivers thrills, chills, and scorching romance! I love her characters, her writing style, the uniqueness of the plots, and the visceral reality she manages to imbue in the descriptions of her books' settings and in her characters' lives. And with this book, she's created one of the most original connecting threads between two books in a series I've ever read. I thought the idea of the main characters meeting on location of the filming of a movie based on the characters and events in the first book was pretty damn ingenious. I loved that!
And since I'm spreading the love, I don't want to skimp on how much I adored Elle and appreciated her very real issues. Adams created the perfect emotional storm in Elle's past, paired it with a learning disorder, and came up with a character both believable and realistic. The emotional impacts of illiteracy and the glimpses of the necessary, labor-intensive work-arounds Elle must incorporate into her daily life to cope with her disability and hide it from the world were brilliant, poignant, and tragic.
Her illiteracy did not, however, define her as a person. Nor was it in any way used to make her seem less a person, not as intelligent, not as worthy. Quite the opposite, actually. I just loved her. She is strong, brutally disciplined, independent, confident...and also vulnerable, dependent, insecure. The sheer scope of her personality and the range of her emotional make-up was impressive.
Honestly, as much as I liked Quinn...eventually...he was a bit dimmer a star than Elle in this book for me. I didn't like him much at first, and had some big concerns with his seeming selfishness. He does show up at a movie set he knows his brother is working at and expects him to sort of drop everything to give him the time of day. That struck me as a bit entitled and immature. But then he started interacting with Elle and either my feelings warmed towards him or he was genuinely changed by his relationship with her, because he ended up being a solid, dependable man in Elle's life...and was both a softy and a real sweetheart. Oh...and sexy. He was definitely all about the sexy.
Together they burned up the pages and their romance sizzled even as it emotionally satisfied.
For all that I liked the plot, which I thought was more streamlined and focused than its predecessor, and thoroughly enjoyed the characters and their relationship, I have to admit, the book started a little slow for me. I was about a quarter of the way in before I felt it really hit its stride. Once it did, I was totally on board for the ride, but the developing pieces of the plot and the initial character introductions seemed a bit clunky for me up until then, and the story started off slightly slower-paced than I would have liked. After the shocking, heart-stopping beginning that was in Adams' debut, this one was far more sedate. A little too sedate.
I also had some trouble with the suspense plot threads in this book, one I didn't have in the previous book. While I felt the action scenes that resulted from the Bad Guys actions were awesome and the emotional impact from the damage BG inflicts was gut-wrenching, he never had much of a presence in the narrative. When he did, he didn't seem terribly effective, at least not in a way that inspired concern, fear, or horror in the lead characters. They didn't even know there was a threat until late in the book. While I suppose there was opportunity for readers to be concerned for the main characters, without the characters themselves being concerned for themselves or knowing of a particular threat, it didn't seem that suspenseful to me.
That issue didn't detract much from the read for me, though. I liked the characters too much, and was too swept up in their romance to care overmuch about it. Elle and Quinn were a delight to my romance-loving heart, and Adams writes hot, sensual sex scenes that burn the pages they grace. When combined with the freshness in the setting and story and the personal issues each of them face, Adams' sophomore effort is another heart-pounding thrill ride of pure reading entertainment.
Disclosure: An ARC of this book was provided to me by Carina Press via NetGalley. This rating, review, and all included thoughts and comments are my own.
Reviewed for One Good Book Deserves Another.
Ellie Morgan is a stunt woman. Her latest movie is about a race car driver, and going around the track has her thinking that she was born to race. She is concealing some big secrets about her past. What she is hiding makes her think she is not good enough for more than she has so far. That includes a relationship with Quinn.
Quinn Reynolds decides to get his older brother and co-owner in the family business, to sell Formula Racing Design because he is weary of running it. His playboy image might make it hard for his brother to listen to him seriously though. He is not sure what he wants to do after selling. He just knows he wants to be the one to choose it, and Ellie might be one of those choices.
Ellie and Quinn meet on the set of the movie she is working on, and accidents start happening, one causing a tragedy, pushing them together. At first they think they are aimed at Ellie, but they did not start till she started spending more time with Quinn. They have to figure out what is going on before there is one “accident” too many.
I loved this book, it has a ton of action in it. Some of the exchanges between Ellie and Quinn made me laugh, and the romantic ones between the two of them were very hot and intense. To me this story read like watching a really good movie. The audience has a good idea what is going to happen. It is predictable, but it is entertaining and exciting along the way. The characters of Ellie and Quinn feel so real. They both think their secrets hold them back, but they still find humor with themselves and each other no matter the seriousness of the situation. I am really looking forward to the next book, and wish I had the right words to describe all of the things that I thought were great.
Official Review @ Coffee Time Romance & More
Quinn Reynolds has lived in his brother's shadow and despite feeling like a huge disappointment, he's done what's expected of him. But now he wants to figure out just what he wants to do instead of being told what he should do by his brother. To do that, Quinn has to fly to California to confront his brother on a movie set for the filming of his brother and sister-in-law's story. His goal is to get his brother to agree to selling their company and getting on with his life. Problem is, someone doesn't want Quinn selling the company.
Ellie Monroe is a woman with a huge secret. While she may be an awesome stunt woman and able to handle a race car like a professional driver, she often feels like she's a complete failure because of the secret she keeps. She keeps herself closed off from everyone, except her best friend, but soon she finds Quinn Reynolds breaking through her protection barrier.
I really liked Quinn and Ellie. Both of them had a load of emotional baggage to deal with, not to mention Ellie's bias on Quinn's motives for being with her, but they were to characters that drew you in immediately. And if there baggage and how they dealt with it didn't draw you in, Quinn being their for Ellie while she dealt with a crushing emotional blow slapped right into love with Quinn.
While the mystery around who was after Quinn for trying to sell the company wasn't much of a secret, the lengths the villain went through kept you wondering what he was going to do next.
I was a bit disappointed that Mac came off as such a jerk when dealing with Quinn. I would have like to see a bit more closure between the brothers. I'm pretty sure a punch to the jaw wouldn't fix all the issues they had.
While this story didn't revolve around racing, like Dangerous Race did, it was still exciting and definitely a sexy read.