Saturday, April 27, 2019

✱✱Book Review✱✱ Northern Nights Series by Jenna van Berke

White Nights
Northern Nights Series Book 1

Can you trust your instincts, when they have betrayed you in the past?

After leaving her abusive husband, PhD student Litza York is looking forward to a change of scenery. A year in a remote village in eastern Finland, researching the rare Saimaa seal is just what she needs.
Meeting handsome park ranger Niilo Vuorikoski comes both as a welcome surprise and a challenge: How can she trust her instincts, when they have utterly failed her in the past?
But her emotional struggle gets overshadowed by a more immediate concern, when someone starts poisoning the object of her study, bringing her favourite animal to the verge of extinction. 
Both issues reach boiling point when Litza pursues a terrible suspicion, and finds herself in mortal danger…

Romantic suspense meets cozy crime in Finland’s lonely countryside. 

Momma Says: 3 stars⭐⭐⭐

White Nights is a cross between romantic suspense and cozy mystery, and honestly, it leans a little more toward cozy mystery for my tastes. Nevertheless, the story is interesting, and easily read in one sitting. I liked both Niilo and Litza, and it was easy to see them as friends. I would've liked a bit more on the romance side as that seems to move rather fast, and I didn't really get a feel for them as a couple. Litza has some past trauma to work through, which is easy enough to figure out even before it's explained, and Niilo is just an all-around sweetheart, plus we get a few more fun characters and a small town that I hope to see more of in the next book. In the end, the story is certainly worth the read, and the town should make for an interesting location for the series.

Dark Nights: A Stalker’s Obsession 
Northern Nights Series Book 2

He watched her. He followed her. And now he wants to own her.

Lola Renzi has been stalked for over a year when she finally accepts her best friend’s offer to leave Portland, Oregon and her stalker behind and take refuge at Litza’s house in a remote village in eastern Finland.
The quiet Finnish winter in combination with the warm attention from handsome and enigmatic local Matti Vuorikoski are balm for her soul, and as days turn into weeks, Lola regains her sense of safety.
Until the day her stalker tracks her down, determined to finally own the woman he’s obsessed with…

A suspenseful stalker turns kidnapper tale set in Finland’s lonely countryside.

Momma Says: 3 stars⭐⭐⭐

This second in the Northern Nights series does ramp up the suspense with a stalker who is nothing short of determined. My favorite parts of the book were from when the stalking began in what felt like a diary or journal. They're from Lola's point of view and they certainly paint a creepy picture. The romance side of this one is where I ran into problems. We're told that Lola is attracted to Matti and later in the story, we get a bit from his perspective, but that's telling, not showing. It did take me a little while to warm up to Matti, so that may have had something to do with it, but I would've liked more depth and I don't know, maybe some romantic exploration between these characters. They seem to go from mere attraction to a relationship very quickly. That aside, I did enjoy the suspense and learning a bit more about this town. The story is a quick read, perfect for an easy weekend afternoon.

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