I did lots of reading over the Christmas break and will be posting reviews over the next few weeks. Here is my review of First Response by Michelle Sutton.
First Response is number three in Michelle Sutton’s Tombstone Series. It definitely lives up to the standard of the first two books in terms of its romance, character development and Christian theme. Trinity is a massage therapist and Chet, whom we’ve met in previous books, is an EMT. He’s hurt his back and needs treatment and thus the romance begins. The book is set in modern day Tombstone where ordinary citizens role play characters from the ‘wild west’ for the many tourists that visit. As in previous books, Trinity and Chet participate, but this doesn’t seem to be as central to the story as it was in the first two books. Instead, the real crux of the story is their struggle with sexual purity. Both of them are fairly new Christians and find that the sexual attraction they feel might be more than they can handle, despite their mutual faith. To complicate matters, Trinity’s ex boyfriend, a very nasty fellow, wants her back and continues to threaten her. Of course, Chet saves the day on more than one occasion. The main characters from book one, Sammie and Jimmy, become a sounding board as well as a lifeline for the couple. Also woven into the story is a lovely relationship between Trinity and her elderly grandmother, a fun and feisty lady who has a bit of a mischievous streak. Trinity struggles with abandonment issues because her own mother abandoned her as a child, but with the help of Granny and Chet, she is able to move forward and leave the pain behind.
I would give First Response a fairly high rating on the ‘sensual’ meter. For a book that is unapologetically Christian, it also gets pretty steamy at times. It stops at giving a graphic play by play, but some readers may find the sexual references beyond their comfort zone. This is quintessential Michelle Sutton style, however. Sutton isn’t afraid to tread the ‘edgy’ tightrope. She typically tackles real life issues that others shy away from, and presents her characters – even the ‘born again’ Christians - as real, fallible, human beings. I found the book maintained a healthy balance between the romance and the inner struggles faced by the couple. The characters and situations were quite believable and I would recommend the entire series to those who want more than a ‘sweet’ romance, but who want to remain on the moral high ground.
Buy at amazon
Buy at amazon