Dare to Risk All

Joyce M.

Months ago on a cruise unwillingly awarded to her by her chauvinistic boss, Tessa had a one-weekend stand with Ben. Their connection was an unusual one, but they live far apart. Devastated that Ben never once called though she gave him her number, Tessa is even more devastated to find out her boss has brought Ben in to “co-own” a higher position she’s been passed over for. Ben still wants her, but with no strings, and she’s just not that girl.

An interesting premise has a boss pitting characters against each other without either of them knowing it. "Dare to Risk All" sets up a “to commit or to not commit” relationship. The problem is that Tessa is a wishy-washy, weak heroine, and for no reason. And though her boss is a true piece of work who needs to retire, in a city as big as the setting, Tessa’s staying with the company is unbelievable. Yes, there is a childhood trauma in her past to explain her behavior, but there’s nowhere near the depth of emotion shown to back up such a high level of spinelessness as an adult in her 30’s. Ben is a gem of a character, who deserves far better than Tessa, as she’s written. His adoration of her is based on looks and their job, yet his journey is a realistic one. The conclusion with family and final decisions by Tessa are abrupt and do not work, but her friends deserve their own stories - they are amazing. A leveling rework of just Tessa would make it unforgettable; however as is this is a truly enjoyable read.

Julie York