Series: The Pact #5
Published by Self-Published on 8/29/16
Genres: Romance, Contemporary
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Keir McGregor has a deep, dark secret that could destroy the woman he loves...
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Pact and The Lie comes a new standalone contemporary romance to make you laugh, cry and swoon.
Jessica Charles shouldn't have even been in London when the unthinkable happened.
She should have been back at home in Edinburgh, perhaps hanging with her boyfriend, having drinks with her sister or doing yoga with her group of friends. She should have been going on in her normal, dependable life as always.
But on that fateful day in August, when a mentally-ill ex-soldier opened fire in public, Jessica's world changed forever.
Now single and crippled from the gunshot wounds, Jessica finds herself scared and alone, losing faith in herself and humanity with each agonizing moment that passes.
That is until a stranger enters her life. A stranger who makes her live again.
Keir McGregor has always been the strong, silent type. Throw in tall, dark, and handsome and you've got pretty much the perfect Scotsman.
Except Keir is anything but perfect. He's got a past he's running away from and a guilty conscience he can't seem to shed. But the more time he spends with Jessica, the more he falls in love with her.
And the more his secret threatens to tear them apart.
He may have been a stranger to her.
But she's never been a stranger to him.
NOTE: The Debt is a complete STANDALONE novel...you do NOT need to read any of the other McGregor books to read this one.
The Debt follows a couple who do not appear in any of the other books and it is its own self-contained story.
I had The Debt on my radar from the moment Keir was introduced in The Lie. I just felt that this damaged character would make a hell of a lead for a book, and moved it way up on my list after reading the synopsis. I didn’t do myself any favors.
The Debt was good…sweet, but it wasn’t as emotionally gripping as I thought it would be. Something about the pace, the characters–my mind wondered a lot while reading it and I was able to put it down. I loved all the moments the protagonists were together, which felt very intimate, but I felt as if I saw it all happening before it happened. I processed my feelings for a bit after reading it, but, ultimately, I think I set myself up.
Like The Lie, this story begins with a hell of an opener, and I was geared and ready to be taken on an emotional ride, after the emotional explosion showed in the beginning scene. I thought, what would these two characters be after everything they endured? Show me the damage! Do you see how I set myself up? Or, maybe the story set me up. Who knows?
Yes, they were both damaged, but they were pretty well adjusted and functional considering what they’d been through. Call it strength if you want, but it didn’t make for a very engaging read, because I didn’t feel like they were truly challenged. I was told that the characters were destroyed, but I didn’t see any behavior, especially from Keir, that showed any damage other than a few bad dreams. I didn’t buy it. I thought Halle would show more ugly. This story started with its grasp around my mind and heart like a vice, but then it let go.
Now, the beauty that she did show was sweet and nice to experience, if not as resounding as I believe it might’ve been with more darkness. Keir and Jessica were two people who held each other up, and I always love seeing couples become stronger together.
Keir, he provided strength and understanding and a soul deep support for Jessica, which was wildly romantic and inspirational. Jessica, she showed her own mettle with her ability to work for her growth, and her refusal to let her life take her under. She did have more missteps than Keir–and that may be the reason I connected with her more–but like Keir, she didn’t see herself, she just saw some of herself.
There are a few quotes referenced in the opening pages that make it clear one of the novel’s themes is guilt, an insidious emotion that warps one’s thinking and emotions. I liked that theme, but I felt the pages of introspection only showed the surface of the emotion. I needed more scenes that showed these characters on the edge, though I keep saying characters, when I just mean Keir. I felt I saw the spectrum of raw emotions from Jessica, in both her thoughts and actions.
This is a romance romance, which I don’t normally mind, but I wanted more from it. I did love being taken on an adventure through Scotland, and the chemistry between Jessica and Keir was fun to experience, as was just being back in the McGregor world. There wasn’t anything glaringly wrong with this novel, technically speaking, but it just didn’t punch me in the gut, which wouldn’t usually be a great setback, except for the fact that I so wanted it to. Oh, well, there’re always those other McGregor men.