Twisted Page Press LLC (2020)
Reviewed by Jill Rey for Reader Views (5/2021)
Lori Matthews continues to solidify her spot as a romance author as she adds her name and talent to the Brotherhood Protectors World series spanning many authors and many, many books.
According to Goodreads.com, author Lori Matthews has eight distinct works, all of which are housed in the romance genre and not afraid to pack a suspenseful punch. However, unlike Matthews’ Callahan Security series, “Justified Misfortune” detours from the world of espionage and into the back country rancher life as she introduces us to Hudson Riggs, former Navy SEAL returned to his mother’s ranch and Sunny Travers, Hudson’s high school flame, also recently returned home to care for her aging grandmother.
Despite the short page count, at just under 200 pages, Matthews packs in a lot of story into this quick read. Diving right in, no time is wasted on developing each character separately, as the reader is exposed to a mysterious murder of a hometown hero that the town appears to believe Sunny committed. Small town loyalties come to a head as the high school history between Hudson and Sunny drives the romantic story line. The suspense arises as Hudson uses his Navy SEAL training to protect Sunny from more than just the town bullying and harassment.
Arguably, the most frustrating part of “Justified Misfortune” is that the story between Hudson and Sunny just seems to get going as the book wraps up. Two hundred pages with a cast you quickly come to love just isn’t enough time with them. After a swift build and rapid glance at both Sunny and Hudson’s new lives back in their hometown, the action comes fast and furious, dissipating almost as speedy as it begins, wrapping into a nicely tied bow that is common across this genre.
All the characteristics of Matthews’ writing we’ve come to love remain on full display as she jumps from international, tech driven settings and plots with the Callahan brothers to the small town, country feel present in the Brotherhood Protectors line of characters. Her releases have become those I’m instantly drawn to and eagerly anticipate hitting shelves and this one is no exception.