You Can Run
by Rebecca Zanetti
Release Date: January 25, 2022
Publisher: Zebra Books
Book #1 in the Laurel Snow series
Number of pages: 400
Source: ARC from NetGalley
Ages 16 and up
CW: kidnapping, serial killer, rape, violence
Laurel Snow wouldn’t call hunting a serial killer a vacation, but with a pile of dead bodies unearthed near her Genesis Valley, WA, hometown, she’ll take what she can get. Yet something about this case stirs her in unexpected ways. Like the startling connection she feels to Dr. Abigail Caine, a fiercely intelligent witness with a disturbing knack for making Laurel feel like she has something on her. Then there’s Laurel’s attraction to Huck Rivers, the fish and wildlife officer guiding her to the crime scene—and into the wilderness…
A former soldier and a trained sniper, Huck’s thirst for blood is rivaled only by his fierce pursuit of Laurel. He’s been burned by love, wounded by the government, and betrayed before, and to say he has trust issues is the ultimate understatement. Plus, he might be closer to this killer than anybody knows
Once in the heart of darkness with Huck, Laurel must negotiate her distracting desire for him, her complex rapport with Abigail—and her mission to find a serial killer among a growing list of suspects and a danger that’s far too close to home. So close in fact, Laurel fears she will never find her way back to the woman she once was…
When a series is named after the main character, and it’s a romantic suspense, you don’t necessarily expect an HEA…but you do expect an HFN. While it didn’t always seem that would happen with this book, there is definitely an HFN when all is said and done. This story had me hopping!
Laurel Snow is an FBI profiler who has worked many serial killer cases. She’s very young and very good at her job. Laurel is one of those kids that went to college before she was even a teenager and doesn’t have the greatest social skills. What I love about her is that she knows she has problems with social situations and doesn’t always just push that aside as nonsense just because she’s the smartest one in the room. Generally, when (if) she realizes she’s alienating her audience she changes tack. It’s not because she’s embarrassed but because she has empathy. Too often, characters such as Laurel are portrayed as robots with no feelings for those around them. Sure, Laurel can get annoyed or confused by the emotions of her family and colleagues. She also knows it’s a her problem and not a them problem so she does what she can to find a middle ground. At least with those who are willing to meet her at that half-way point.
What’s a romantic suspense without a grumpy gus? Better yet, a grumpy gus with a loyal dog. Huck and his dog don’t interact with many. He may work for the state’s Fish and Wildlife department, but he works alone or is called in on special projects. He hasn’t been a team player in years, since a particularly troublesome case that has left him with PTSD and a host of other issues. He may not welcome an intriguing FBI agent showing up at his door while he’s technically on vacation, but he appreciates her matter-of-fact ways.
This story is all about the serial killer, but the chemistry between Laurel and Huck is great, too. The respect they have for one another is peppered with the strong connection they share. Huck wants none of these entanglements and Laurel doesn’t quite know what to do with the pull. She’s no innocent, but she’s never felt these particular impulses. There’s a slow-burn happening, and we even get some payoff. There’s much more story to unfold with these two as this series goes along. They already gave me plenty of warmth and butterflies so I can’t wait to see where it all leads.
Reading is an escape for me, a way to relax and unwind. I don’t typically read straight suspense because I need to know things are going to work out in the end. This story kept me guessing. There were many suspects in my mind and the author did a wonderful job of keeping things moving without sticking on one person for too long, but not making any of the possibilities seem outrageous. Yet I knew I’d get some sort of closure and Laurel would finish the story in a good position and not in a body bag.
There are so many interesting characters introduced in this story. A great blend of storytelling and setting up the series as a whole. I absolutely adore the partner the FBI sends in for Laurel. Walter just rolls with the punches and seems to really want to make up for some not so stellar work in the past. Kate and her girls are a joy and really bring a different side of Laurel out. And I can guarantee we aren’t done with some of the other, more creepy, denizens of the town. I cannot elaborate without spoilers, but my stomach was often in knots from some of these people. The guilty and the others alike.
I’m very interested to see where the author takes this story. I’m looking forward to going along for the ride.
**I received an ARC of this book courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and given freely*
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