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Tangled Up In You    by Rachel Gibson order for
Tangled Up In You
by Rachel Gibson
Order:  USA  Can
Avon, 2007 (2007)
*   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Maddie Dupree has returned to Truly, Idaho to come to terms with her past, and the sordid murder of her mother, who was a flighty young woman with a history of falling in love with the wrong men. Young Alice Jones' love affair with Loch Hennessy eventually proved deadly. After catching her husband in the arms of another woman once too often, Hennessy's long-suffering wife Rose shot both Alice and Loch, and then turned the gun on herself. It wasn't just Maddie's life that was torn apart that night; young Mick and Meg Hennessy's lives would never be the same again either.

As a true crime writer, Maddie knows how to get to the heart of a story. Armed with fresh information from her mother's recently recovered journals, she's determined to uncover the truth surrounding the scandal that still sets tongues wagging at the local Rexall. But when she returns to the scene of the crime, she understands exactly why her mother fell under the charms of skirt chasing Loch Hennessy. His son Mick, who now owns the bar, is his father's spitting image. Mick has charm to spare and is far too much of a distraction for the usually sensible Maddie. Mick also finds himself immediately drawn to the luscious newcomer who's asking far too many questions about his family and about the night his mother gunned down Loch and his latest girlfriend. Each figures a quick affair will take care of their mutual lust - but when lust turns to love, and when Mick discovers who Maddie really is - it shatters his world all over again.

The clever storyline, dialogue, and marvelous characterizations that are the trademark of a Rachel Gibson contemporary romance just aren't evident in Tangled Up In You. Nor does she set up any real sexual tension between the two leads until well into the story - leaving little room for Maddie and Mick to reach any sort of believable resolution with their tangled pasts - or a possible future together. Though there are entertaining moments when Maddie and three fellow writers (two of whom are leads from previous books) get together during wedding preparations to kibitz over life and men, these transitions do little to rescue a rather lackluster story.

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