When I read the brief synopsis for Intimate Whispers I was instantly attracted to the storyline and felt that after the last review that I gave Ms. Carney I should read another one of her books. I read the book description a few times- not because it was complicated but more because I thought it was an interesting synopsis but a story that I have read before but not terribly interested in reading again. I ultimately decided to read it and am glad that I did. The story held me enthralled by the end of the first paragraph and I had me in its snare until the last word.
Sabrina is a woman who hears the voices of the dead. She has done everything that she could think of to make them stop talking to her from ignoring them to something as severe as checking herself into mental institutions, for her own safety. When she is approached by a mysterious male and propositioned to give her body on favor of having the voices disappear she is more than happy to do whatever HE wants. But she makes the deal with the devil and it works for a time. but has severe and costly consequences.
Jason Raines is a man carrying around a lot of guilt and unexpressed anger towards his brother. He equally wants to find redemption and definitive answers to his brother Thad's disappearance two years ago. He has a feeling that his troubled brother is dead but holds out hope that one day his brother will return healthy and safe. When Jason finds his next door neighbor (Sabrina) disoriented in their local supermarket seemingly stuck in a trance he immediately becomes her protector and takes her home to rest. By the end of the night he is thoroughly confused by his encounter with her but feels that she is the answer to his one obsessive wish- finding his brother.
Sabrina reluctantly takes on Jason's request out of simple curiosity and a need to repay him his several good deeds towards her. As they dig it his brother's past they form an ever evolving bond of trust that leads them into a romantic relationship that neither were expecting, but needed desperately.
I was really surprised by how much I loved this story. I felt that Sabrina and Jason's chemistry was at times sweet, realistic and scorching hot all at once. I cared about these characters and felt compelled to root for them from the moment that he set eyes on her in that supermarket. I am not necessarily into the white knight scenarios- like at all- but I do LOVE strong compassionate men who are incessant in supporting his partner instead of overwhelming her with testosterone and stereotypes. Ms. Carney's characters are perfectly flawed well crafted characters that are relatable and realistic. Sabrina's skittishness and at times abrasive personality is realistic. This is woman who has not had the proper support system for her unique gift. She trusts no one- not even herself- when it comes to her abilities. Jason is the perfect foil for her. While he is a little more assured in his place in the world he still is has enough insecurities to make him interesting. They work well together because they are the outsiders who have finally found someone to talk to. The buildup of the relationship was quite solid and entertaining to read and I really liked the slight use of detective skills that they used to solve his brother's mysterious disappearance. Let's not forget the delightfully creative sex scenes that were carnally erotic without going over the top. There was one or two scenes later on in the book that are quite disturbing but, overall, not so bad that they immediately turned me off from the story. The supernatural elements were well-plotted, not so detailed that we miss the point of the story because the author gets bogged down in details, or so vague and poorly executed that you forget the purpose of the story. This was an excellent compromise of creepy supernatural elements and romantic suspense.
The one negative that I had with the story was what happens after the mystery is solved. The story begins to fall apart after its wonderful beginning. Sabrina's reluctance to commitment is not my problem; it fits with the character, but more that it dragged on a little too long. I felt that Jason's father was a little contrived. The initial tension with his father was more than interesting to read. But adding the race issue as a reason for their continued estrangement is old and tired. I will not reveal the exact reason why they are fighting but will say that that was one item I wished she had expounded on. I am glad that she tied up the loose ends behind Sabrina's story but I felt that it was at the expense of a clean happy ending.
This story is unique enough in its genre to stand out- and I am saying that this is a great thing. If you love Dee Carney's work you will love this story of a couple who is willing to find the dead to keep their love alive. Intimate Whispers is a deliciously entertaining read that will keep you turning the pages
Whispers from the dead are everywhere…because their greatest desire is to be heard.
Sabrina Turner has found only one way to stop the curse she was born with—allow an incubus to worship her body in exchange for halting the voices drowning her sanity. Every time she succumbs, it’s an act of desperation. Yet she’s not sure if she wants to be rid of the bittersweet release.
All Jason Raines wants is to communicate one last time with his deceased brother. When he discovers his seductive neighbor speaks to the dead, it’s another reason to get close to her. The visions and cryptic dreams Sabrina’s experiencing are messages for him, he’s sure of it. Whatever her price, he’ll pay it. When a reluctant Sabrina opens the doorway to the other side, though, he discovers the cost may be higher than he first thought.
Her urgent search for freedom…his crucial need for absolution…a burning love between them offers their only hope of salvation from—intimate whispers.