Review: Guarding Grace by Rebecca York

guarding graceTitle: Guarding Grace

Author: Rebecca York

Mills & Boon imprint: Intrigue

Year of publication: 2010

The heroine: Researcher Grace Cunningham

The hero: PI Brady Lockwood

The blurb: Brady Lockwood had no choice but to rescue the woman who’d witnessed his brother’s murder. In the wrong place at the wrong time, Grace Cunningham had become a target, and only he could keep her alive. But Brady was convinced she knew more than she was telling….

More than what she’d seen, Grace was haunted by what she kept secret. Things she couldn’t tell anyone, especially Brady. Things that went beyond his brother’s murder. Her brooding bodyguard had given her not only protection but passion and pleasure. And now Grace feared losing Brady to the killers at their heels — and to a secret that could tear him away….

Standalone or series: Book thirty three (!) in the 43 Light Street series, but can be read as a standalone

The review: As a writer, there are only so many plots you can come up with. That’s fact. As a reader, I don’t mind reading a plot I’ve read over and over, as long as the characters are relatable and the story is interesting. This book, sadly, had neither. The plot was just downright silly.

Brady’s older half-brother, John Ridgway, has been cheating on his wife for years. He’s hired Grace to help him put together his autobiography (he’s a power player in Washington DC) and he uses his meetings with her as a cover, so he can have sex with his mistress afterwards. Grace is still in the office when she hears John going at it with his latest paramour, and then she hears him die.

The official line is that he had a heart attack, and his girlfriend is taken away for questioning by some shady individuals. His security team are covering his death up as nobody is sure whether his death was natural or forced. Brady thinks that Grace is his brother’s mistress, and he wants answers so he follows her, but when some goons try to kidnap her he steps in and gets to her first. They promptly go on the run where someone tries to kill them countless times. Brady can tell Grace knows more than she’s telling, and although he knows he should probably cut his losses and let her loose, he vows to protect her at all costs.

I don’t think I’m ruining the book for anyone by letting you on the big secret: half the characters are clones, Grace included. The woman John Ridgway was having an affair with was actually a female clone of himself. Turns out rich people paid some scientist to clone them in the event they ever needed an organ transplant (???), so their clones would be sacrificed to save them. Turns out the clones found out who they were and why they exist, and unsurprisingly aren’t happy to hear it, so they rise up against the rich people and decide to strike back. Oh boy. You really had to concentrate on following the very convoluted plot in order to make sense of anything, and by the end I just didn’t care about any of the players. I just felt sorry for Brady being dragged into the whole mess, and I did feel a little sorry for Grace, who felt less than human being a clone. Pass on this one, kids.