[Note from Frolic: today, we welcome author Susan May Warren to the site. She’s sharing some of her favorite romantic suspense novels with us. Take it away, Susan!]
Susan May Warren here, with a list of my current favorite authors. I dunno about you, but I consumed a lot of books during the Q-tine. My genre of choice is Romantic Suspense, and during my voracious reading, I combined old favorites with some new authors. I’m an inspirational reader, too, so I need stories that are gripping, with a great suspense plot and great writing that also inspire me and make me think. These books also must immerse me in the storyworld, and, of course, I have to fall in love with the hero. After combing through all the great stories and authors out there, here are the authors and their stories that made it to the top of my list.
At the top of my list is best-seller Lynette Eason. I love her high-octane, fast-paced, yet easy writing style, combined with her tough heroines and damaged by oh-so-heroic heroes. All her series are fantastic, but I’m currently in love with her Danger Never Sleeps series. Her heroine, Brooke, is a former soldier, as is the hero, and their romance starts with a bang…and then restarts again, when they’re both stateside. Realistic, riveting plot that takes you around the globe. And, the hero, Asher is exactly like I love them—heroic yet broken. She’s the queen of romantic thriller and this is a great start to a new series (you’ll love the subplot, too!)
Also, at the top is one of my favorite military authors, Ronie Kendig. She and Lynette share a military bent in their stories, but Ronie’s plots read more like a Strike Back episode—a great team of operatives spanning the globe to stop evil. I love her heroes, the high action missions and the global threat. And who doesn’t love an ex-Navy Seal leading the team? Her stories always start out with a bang, and they don’t slow down until the end—and leave you breathless for the next story. And don’t discount her heroines—they know how to kick in doors and take names. If you like intelligent, fast-paced, international stories, you’ll love Ronie’s books. I’m currently reading Storm Rising, but you might want to start with The Tox Files (because then you’ll get the treat of seeing old characters pop up in new books). Beware: If you start this on a Friday night, you’ll won’t do anything but read all weekend!
A consistent favorite of mine who never disappoints is Dani Pettrey. I fell in love with her books during her first series – Alaskan Courage, then The Chesapeake Valor series, and now I’m loving her new Coastal Guardians series. First, you gotta love the Coast Guard, and especially this team of investigators (I didn’t know that the Coast Guard had an investigative team). And, I fell in love with Finn, the lead investigator, a man of faith. This series more mystery than thriller, but with plenty of suspense, and stronger on the romance. I loved book one, that brought honorable Finn together with a stubborn reporter, Gabby. One thing that Dani does exceptionally well is her storyworld. I could practically taste the salt in the air. More, she surprised me with an ending I didn’t see coming. Dani’s characters feel like friends I want to hang out with. And I do. Highly recommended.
If you’ve read all the books of the above author (or haven’t, but are looking for something new), then I recommend my new favorite suspense author—Natalie Waters. A fresh new voice on the scene, she sets her stories in a Mayberry-esque town in Georgia and weaves in the players of that town. Widow Lane Kent is struggling with depression (understandably) and trying to figure out how to care for her small son, hoping to get back on her feet again by running a local café. When she stumbles upon a dead body, (while running from the handsome hero, Charlie) she and Charlie, the new deputy sheriff, search for the killer. Living Lies is a great balance of romance and suspense, lots of twists and it also tackles the hard issues of clinical depression. I found Natalie’s voice to be easy to read, but well crafted, and she does a great job of immersing you into the small-town world. I love small town series, so this instantly won my heart. Give her a chance—I think you’ll love this first book in the Harbored Secrets series.
Not so big on romance? That’s okay—I found an author that is all about the international high stakes of the world of espionage. Clean, yes expertly plotted, the story is riveting and reads like an Alias episode (or, frankly entire series!) James Hannibal, the author, is a former stealth pilot, so he knows his stuff. His lead is a female, but like Ronie’s characters, she’s no softie. Talia is smart and brave and tough. A rookie CIA agent, she’s tasked with stopping an international heist, a job that will include plenty of high-action scenes, covert ops, and high-tech gear. Think: Female James Bond meets Mission Impossible. I thoroughly enjoyed this thrilling escape into the secret world of international intrigue.
There you have it—my list of favorite authors for a clean, but riveting (sometimes romantic!) suspense. Drop me a line and let me know if you agree! (or, if you have any recommendations!)
About the Author:
Susan May Warren is the USA Today best selling, Christy, Carol and RITA Award–winning author of more than seventy-five novels whose compelling plots and unforgettable characters have won acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. The mother of four grown children, and married to her real-life hero for over 30 years, she loves travelling and telling stories about her life overseas (Russia) and Minnesota.
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The Heart of a Hero by Susan May Warren, out now!
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