August 12, 2013 by Heidi
Welcome to Illinois! While I’ve driven through before, I’m quite excited for this trip as we’re stopping over for a day in Chicago. I requested the full Ferris Bueler tour and made sure to pack my lederhosen.
Personal favorite? The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffeneger.
What’s your favorite Illinois read?
Title: Something About You [Goodreads]
Author: Julie James [Website|Twitter|Facebook]
Standing: FBI/US Attorney book 1. Can be read as a stand alone.
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
Published: March 2nd, 2010 by Berkeley Sensation
Format: Paperback; 307 pages.
Source: Borrowed from my local library.
Fate has thrown two sworn enemies…
Of all the hotel rooms rented by all the adulterous politicians in Chicago, female Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron Lynde had to choose the one next to 1308, where some hot-and-heavy lovemaking ends with a death. And of all the FBI agents in Illinois, it had to be Special Agent Jack Pallas who gets assigned to this high-profile homicide. The same Jack Pallas who still blames Cameron for a botched crackdown three years ago—and for nearly ruining his career.
Into each other’s arms…
Work with Cameron Lynde? Are they kidding? Maybe, Jack thinks, this is some kind of welcome-back prank after his stint away from Chicago. But it’s no joke; the pair is going to have to put their rocky past behind them and focus on the case at hand. That is, if they can cut back on the razor-sharp jibes—and smother the flame of their sizzling-hot sexual tension.
Something About You is another example of those tried and true hate-made-love romances that many of us just can’t help falling for over and over again. Rife with sexual tension, you can practically see the sparks flying between Cameron and Jack from the moment we get them in a room together. I always love this play on emotions, and somehow it never really gets old for me. You have to have a lot of chemistry with someone to love or hate them and the reality is it’s a thinner line than you’d think. We’re brought into Jack and Cameron’s story years after they’ve initially met, been very attracted to one another, and had a falling out of epic (and televised) proportions that resulted in Jack’s spending the subsequent years demoted to Nebraska. Jack is an FBI agent while Cameron is an Assistant US Attorney, and having the mess that was their short history slowly revealed to us as we read is both hilarious and painful.
Really, when the boyfriend questioned what I was reading that day my response was “the hot version of Law and Order”. Because it is, and I have a feeling this entire series will follow suit (though I’ve heard from a number of sources that Something About You is the strongest installment). Julie James managed to draw me in and interest me in a type of novel I don’t normally go in for–that goes for both the crime and contemporary romance aspects. She kept me on the edge of my seat with action and suspense of both the life threatening and sexual varieties with a fast pace, a hilarious (turned ugly) opening scene, and a scandal to rock Chicago. I was incredibly grateful that James didn’t try to lead on her audience in that “I know something you don’t know” way–because we always know, but instead gave us short glimpses of the culprit’s point of view to let us see just enough of both sides to keep us guessing.
Cameron is one of the first contemporary romance females that I’ve really enjoyed. Usually I find them self-indulgent, whiny, or annoying to the point that I can’t help but think ‘it’s no wonder you’re still single’. But Cameron? Well she’s just a professional who’s been more focused on her career than her personal life. I loved seeing the misscommunication crumble between her and Jack as they were forced to spend more time with one another, and both were forced to admit their short comings in regards to one another’s pasts. And Jack? Well, if you like a good 5-O’clock shadow, a hands on approach to the job, and a guy who manages to be protective without being overbearing, you’ll like Jack. He respects Cameron with her abilities and knowledge as a professional, and I loved to see their relationship as one between equals.
In Something About Normal Julie James manages to strike that ideal balance between action, story, and romance. While the focus is certainly on Cameron and Jack, there is such depth to the story because of the world these characters live in. Cameron’s best friends, Jack’s partner, all were wonderful secondary characters that were developed in a way that made their lives beyond our main characters’ something easy to imagine, but their presence for Jack and Cameron made our couple more real. I’d really love to see future novels in this series focusing on some of these characters, but I don’t believe that happens. I am curious though–just how many parings between the FBI and US Attorneys can you come up with in Chicago before it gets a bit ridiculous?
Something About You wasn’t a story that could have taken place in just any city, though I’m not sure I really got an intense feel of Chicago from reading it. Maybe if I were more familiar with the city itself? Still, I’m clearly one satisfied customer. Julie James pulled me out of my regular reading box, and made me quite happy I did so. I’ll certainly be reading more in the near future!