One Wrong Step

One Wrong Step - Laura Griffin 4,5 starsJohn McAllister is a reporter who is the embodiment of the charming playboy who can talk any woman into his bed. He is confident and enjoys the company of women. That is until he crosses paths again with Celie Wells, his former colleague's (Feenie from ONE LAST BREATH) best friend. She evokes feelings in him he has never experienced before and trying to stay professional while he writes a story on her ex-husband's murder proves to be difficult.Celie is resilient and brave. She is compassionate and an open book for everyone. Before she found out the trouble her ex-husband was in, she had the life of a perfect suburban housewife. Now she's divorced, longing for a family and a suspect in the investigation of her ex' murder. And on top of that she has to deal with her attraction to John, the reporter out to get the dirt on her.The attraction between Celie and John is apparent but they both fight it. John doesn't want to commit himself to a woman in that way. Celie fights the attraction the most because she thinks they're only compatible on a sexual level. She literally tries to keep her distance physically but about half way through the book there's a change in her feelings. She makes a U-turn and suddenly stops fighting the attraction and gives in. The suddenness of this change of heart is the only little (very, very little) thing that bothered me in character development, but I soon forgave Griffin because the love scene that followed it was by far the best and hottest one I've read in Griffin's books so far. It was beautifully written, sweet and sensual. McAllister definitely scored points in that scene.Essentially this story sort of continues from ONE LAST BREATH that's why it I think it's important to read these two books in sequence. Celie's ex-husband who was involved in some shady business in book 1 ends up dead after a strange visit to Celie, who has moved on with her life. Both Celie and John were secondary characters in the first book. When I met them in that book I was immediately intrigued by John and Celie also definitely caught my attention. But even though many aspects of the storyline of ONE WRONG STEP find their origin in the other book of the duology, still it is anything but predictable. The first few pages of the prologue of this book had my heart pounding in anticipation of another great Laura Griffin story to come. And my anticipation was met yet again. It was realistic, fast-paced, undiluted, the humor was subtle and the suspense was superb. I can't praise Laura Griffin enough for the way she writes suspense plots. It was thrilling, unpredictable and perfectly set up, keeping me reading and wanting to know the next development in the story. Players are introduced, clues are revealed, pieces fall into place and even though I received a lot of information along the way, the wrap-up was still surprising and original. As I've grown used to from her, with ONE WRONG STEP she has delivered a book with a lovely romance, excellent suspense, great characters and a wonderful ending. At a certain point I thought the plot had been wrapped up but because I still had about 80 pages to go I knew that couldn't be it. And luckily it wasn't. The last 80 pages were action-filled and extremely fast-paced, tying loose ends and the book ended with a lovely and tear-jerking epilogue.The combination of the blossoming and touching love story and the compelling suspense is one that Laura Griffin masters skillfully and she has delivered on it with every book I've read by her hand. This combination is the backbone of each story and yet at the same time every story is amazingly unique. The dynamics between the main couple are different in every book, which is logical due to their different personalities. It gives each book its own vibe even when they're linked. Combining brilliant suspense with romance that is excellently put together emotionally and the slightly more sensual tone proved to be a winning formula for me. ONE WRONG STEP is my favorite Griffin book to-date. WHISPER OF WARNING comes really close and I've rated them equally but this one definitely tops the list. And with this book my stack of Laura Griffin books has been read and I'm eagerly awaiting her next masterpiece. News of a new series starring two secondary characters from WHISPER OF WARNING has reached me and I can't wait.