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Out of Time    by Samantha Graves order for
Out of Time
by Samantha Graves
Order:  USA  Can
Forever, 2008 (2008)
* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Jillian Talbot has a gift, one that has served her well as curator of a small New York museum. Her world shifts when touching certain artefacts; she has the ability to see the object's history, even if those visions are often clouded or blurred and never allow her to clearly identify the faces and the locations from so long ago. Compared to her adventurous elder sister Raven, however, Jillian leads a sedate and rather boring lifestyle, yet one that suits her very well, thank you very much. No one is more surprised than Jillian when she's kidnapped (twice in less than a few minutes) and thrust into the middle of a dangerous escapade involving bloodthirsty tomb raiders and other shady criminal elements with eyes on a historical prize that could ultimately become the biggest archaeological find in history.

Simon Bonner has retired from the tomb robbing game for good and intends to live a more normal lifestyle. That dream goes right down the toilet when an old nemesis pounds on his door begging for help. Simon would like nothing more than to throw his former wife-stealing colleague back out into the rainy night. But when the fatally wounded man hands over an ancient crystal lens that purportedly has the ability to unlock mysteries of the past, Simon is all ears. That his ex-wife's life hangs in the balance if the The Key to unlocking the lens's secrets isn't delivered within a specified time frame only exacerbates his dilemma. Worse - this mysterious key turns out to be a bookish and prim local museum curator who becomes more of a thorn in Simon's side than his cheating ex-wife ever was - especially once he and Jillian realise that a single touch ignites a mutual chemistry that could torch the entire Mexican rainforest. However, resolving those incendiary feelings will have to take a back seat to discovering the true mysteries that the ancient lens will ultimately reveal.

Out of Time is a loosely based sequel to Graves' debut in Sight Unseen, in that it features Jillian Talbot as lead character this time around. She's a spunky, well drawn woman who knows her mind and is determined to help Simon rescue his wife, even if doing so goes against everything she believes in, and could well push her physical and emotional limits. The fact that she finds Simon attractive only annoys her further. Naturally, their personal and professional differences set the stage for plenty of combative dialogue and enjoyable chemistry as the pair alternates between arguments and ardour - as well as trying to keep one step ahead of the equally colourful bad guys. Graves presents another nicely written, action-oriented and enjoyable romantic suspense in Out of Time - a story that delivers equal parts swashbuckling adventure and sizzling romance.

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