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4.4 out of 5 stars
Chasing Fire
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63 of 66 people found the following review helpful
on 10 April 2011
Rowan Tripp loves being a smoke jumper and fighting fire with her fellow jumpers. But this year things are different. Last season her jump partner died in a fire and his death is not so easy to deal with. And then there's Gull Curry, a rookie smoke jumper, who seems to be seriously interested in Rowan. Normally she doesn't mix work and play but Gull is not that easy to discourage and pretty tempting. When a murder happens and Rowan is in danger, she realizes that maybe leaning on Gull and letting him into her life might be not such a bad idea.
Will Rowan and Gull's relationship make it through the fire season and will they be able to stop the murderer before he kills one of them?

When I get a new book by Nora Roberts I always feel a bit like a kid in a candy store. She is my favourite author and once again created an amazing novel. "Chasing Fire" is about a group of smoke jumpers and after reading the book I think that what they do is amazingly brave and absolutly crazy.

At first I needed some pages to get into the language used between the smoke jumpers because it's a bit different from Nora Robert's usual style. But after the first ten pages I appreciated the way the book is written because I felt that it fit to the smoke jumpers and the constant danger they are in.

I loved reading about the main characters Rowan and Gull. Rowan is strong woman, she is hard but also fair. She is a good trainer and team leader. I loved the scenes in which she trained the new smoke jumpers. The way she supported them and joked with them was admirable.
Gull is a hero after my own heart. He's intelligent, interested in a lot of different things and seems to live his life exactly the way he wants to. Together he and Rowan make a wonderful pair. Their banters were very entertaining and I loved the scenes in which Rowan let him into her heart.
I also liked that there is a second, smaller love story between Rowan's father and a woman he meets. Their relationship is so sweet and shows that you are never too old to find love.

Besides the two main characters I especially loved reading about the camaraderie of the smoke jumpers and about their missions. The smoke jumpers are like a small family, they love to rib each other and there are a lot of funny scenes between them. To read about them fighting the fire was thrilling and made this book a fast read. I was always interested in reading about their operations and I was impressed that with every jump into the flames they risked their lifes.

The suspense part of the book fits to the fire theme. The first murder is like a spark that sets the murderer on fire and makes him unpredictable and dangerous for everyone. I had a suspicion about who the killer might but was never sure about it.

covers
I like both the UK and US cover, they fit to the fire them and look interesting.

final appraisal
"Chasing Fire" has everything a great romantic suspence novel needs. The story is thrilling and fascinating, there are two wonderful love stories in the book, the camaraderie between the smoke jumpers is amazing and their fight against the fire is breathtaking.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 5 July 2011
I've been a great fan of Nora Roberts for many years and never thought she could write a bad book - until this one. The heroinne is so tough she makes Rambo look like a wimp. I'm all for women being strong, but this one has no softness in her. I can't understand why the hero is attracted to her as she is more butch than him. If you have not read any of Nora's books before, don't start with this.
Sorry Nora, but this is the first,and I hope only, book of yours that isn't worth keeping.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on 19 April 2011
I am still reading this novel (nearly finished) but although a good story and well told, it it just so different from the Roberts style I am used to that I find it hard to believe it was written by Nora - really, REALLY hard to believe. It's well researched, as you would expect from a Roberts; the characters are interesting but there isn't the depth of character development I've come to expect. There are two main male/female pairings but the rest of the cast are pretty much interchangeable. They all act the same; they all talk the same. That's not normal for Nora - her books are usually rich with a variety of likeable people and complex relationships. They may not differ much from book to book but they are what Nora does, and does exceptionally well. The language used is unusual too - more sparse, less descriptive.

Sorry Nora, either this isn't your best work or someone else wrote it.
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3.5 Stars

Rowan is a smoke jumper who spends her summers fighting wildfires in the Montana mountains. She is part of a close team but the death of her jump partner (Jim) last year has left her grief stricken and feeling guilty even though she knows there was nothing she could have done to save him. Gull is a seasoned fire fighter but a rookie jumper who is immediately drawn to Rowan. She has a rule never to mix work and pleasure but he is determined to break through her defences and get her to date him. As the fire season continues it becomes clear that someone blames the smoke jumpers, and Ro in particular, for Jim's death and they are determined to make them pay. Can Ro figure out who is behind the accidents on base before she or Gull pay the ultimate price?

I have a confession to make - as unlikely as this may sound Chasing Fire is actually the first book I've read by Nora Roberts! I've heard so many good things about her writing that I can't believe I've only just got around to giving her a try but I'm sure it won't be long before I pick up more of her work. As the daughter of a fireman I have always had a huge amount of respect for firefighters but living in the UK I never really knew that much about smoke jumpers. I have to say right now that they are something else, kudos to those men and women who put themselves into such dangerous situations to protect the wildlife and rural homes effected by wildfires!

I really enjoyed reading about the smoke jumpers and their way of life, the camaraderie amongst the team was realistic and I loved the banter between them all. The work they do is dangerous and hard and you feel like you're right there alongside them feeling the heat of the blaze and breathing in the smoke fumes as they battle the dragon. Just thinking about what these guys put themselves through physically was enough to leave me feeling exhausted! Like many people who work hard the jumpers also play hard, they use banter and snark as a way of coping with stressful situations and they look out for their own.

Ro has been part of the team for a long time and she is a strong and capable woman who really knows what she is doing when it comes to her job. She is just as tough as the men she works with and has earned their respect, I loved the fact that she isn't looked down on because she is a woman and although there are less females in the crew than men there was no hint of sexism towards them. As much as I respected Ro for her professional abilities I did find myself getting frustrated with her in other ways. She is very immature emotionally, very much a daddy's girl and at times I felt she acted like a spoilt 12 year old which left me wanting to shake her. Gull was a hero it was easy to fall for but I felt he deserved to find someone so much better than Ro. He was sweet and caring, a romantic at heart but also a strong guy who looks out for the people he cares for. I enjoyed the banter between them and I did like seeing him break down Ro's defences and get under her skin. The romance between them built up nicely but I felt it ended a little abruptly - I wanted to see more of how their future played out so would have really appreciated an epilogue to show how they were getting on after the summer season was over.

When it comes to the mystery of who was causing trouble for the jumpers I felt it was a bit too obvious who was the one behind everything. To me it didn't feel like there were many potential suspects which made it far too easy to guess who was the murderer. I also didn't find myself particularly interested in the secondary romance involving Ro's father. All it really did was bring out Ro's childish side which irritated me so much I wanted to throw the book across the room. Overall I loved the book for the smoke jumpers and would love to re-visit the crew again in the future, I'm sure there must be at least a few stories that could be told about the rest of the team! I felt suspense was a little disappointing but I'm still looking forward to reading more by Nora Roberts in the future.
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on 14 February 2012
You can also read my review here: [...]
AMAZING, simply AMAZING!

This book was like reading three books in one. An action-packed firefighter story, a romance novel and a mystery. I loved every page-turning second of it.

Story One - the action-packed firefighter story: Never before have I wished that I could jump out of a plane. Heck, I don't even really like sitting inside a plane but how I longed to be one of the 'Zulies' and join in for just one smoke-jump. WOW, what a crazy job to have. The vivid imagery that Nora Roberts used made me not only see the flames but feel the heat as they burned through the gorgeous wilderness that the 'jumpers' were fighting so hard to protect. From the moment the siren sounded to the moment they 'killed the dragon', my heart would race and I was fighting the urge to read ahead to make sure everyone made it safely back to base.

Story Two - the romance novel: Just enough 'smut' to make the story good. Budding romances between Rowan and Gull, as well as Lucas 'Iron Man' Tripp and Ella, were something that made any woman long to be seduced again... the start of any relationship is so great and these two do not disappoint. After hours on the battlefield, risking your life, I can only imagine the passion behind some of the romance.

Story Three - the mystery: Totally unexpected. When things start to go awry on base, vandalism, gun shots, and equipment failure, the police are called in and an intense investigation begins. Bodies start showing up during hard-fought fires and fingers are pointed in every direction. Who would put people who already risk their lives in such danger? Who has a grudge that they aren't willing to let go?

Overall, I LOVED this book and was so sad that it ended. An amazing adventure and one that I would recommend to any and all fans of good writing and even better reading!
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on 19 April 2011
What can I say? Nora Roberts is one heck of a storyteller and CHASING FIRE features many of her standard storyteller trademarks . . . an intelligent hero and heroine, some very witty dialog, and a downright respectable storyline. Yes, CHASING FIRE earns a strong recommendation and Ms. Roberts' continues to amaze this reader with yet another fine story.

CHASING FIRE- Hardcover Release Date- April 2011
From the Back Cover-
There's little as thrilling as firefighting -- at least to Rowan Tripp. The Missoula smoke jumpers are in Rowan's blood: her father is a legend. She's been fighting fires since her eighteenth birthday. At this point, returning to the wilds of Montana for the season feels like coming home -- even with reminders of the partner she lost last season still lingering. Fortunately, this year's rookie crop is one of the strongest ever -- and Gulliver Curry's one of the best. He's also a walking contradiction, a hotshot firefighter with a big vocabulary and a winter job at a kids' arcade. Everything is thrown off balance when a dark presence lashes out against Rowan, looking to blame someone for last year's tragedy. Rowan knows she can't complicate things with Gull -- any distractions in the air or on the ground could mean the end -- but if she doesn't find someone she can lean on, she may not make it through the summer . . .

My Review-
With skilled writing Ms. Roberts brings informative knowledge into a plot that is clever and fresh. Coupled with a light dose of sensuality, the story moves quickly and deftly, building suspense all along the way. Yup, I enjoyed this one, thanks largely to Roberts' hero and heroine. Rowan Tripp is one powerful heroine and her somewhat brass personality is strikingly refreshing. And hero Gulliver Curry's possesses the perfect personality to completely counteract this heroine's cocksure manner.

Yes, Nora Roberts is an author who delivers nine times out of ten, but is CHASING FIRE worth the hardcover price? Well to be honest, I have a hard time shelling out money for any hardcover book and exactly what does the average reader do with a purchased hardcover book afterward? It's not like every home has a Victorian Library room! So with that in mind, I went to the local library and luckily snagged my copy! Blissfully, in the end I was truly pleased with Nora Robert's CHASING FIRE.

Rating: A-
Sensuality: Warm
MaryGrace Meloche.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 1 July 2011
I can honestly say that this is the first Nora Roberts book which I am struggling to like. It reads like a documentary and whilst the facts are very interesting, the story suffers rather than benefits from her new approach.

Prolific as Roberts is (and as Robb), she is seldom, if ever, one to bang on and on about the minutae of the heroine's profession. It is also highly repititive, another rarity in a book crafted by Roberts.
Her phrasing and terminology are also markedly different from usual. Is there the ghost of a ghost writer at work?!
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on 28 July 2015
This one also had a very strong female lead, Rowan Tripp and I really loved her as well.

Rowan Tripp is one of the smoke jumpers (they are basically firefighters in the wild), just like her father Lucas Tripp used to be. The story focuses on both Rowan and Lucas and tells us about their life and how they fall in love with two special people both of whom neither could have imagined. The book has quite a bit about smoke jumpers whom I admit apart from knowing their job description, I didn’t know much about so it was interesting to see how much work, effort goes into putting out those fires and how dangerous it is.

The story takes place after an year has passed since the death of Rowan’s jumping partner and Ro is still having nightmares from the event. Now, someones messing with the team, killing people and there are too many variables and suspects.

I enjoyed how Gull sneaked up on Ro and tied up in knots and at the same time I loved how open and upfront they were and were they stood in the relationship and what they both wanted in future or in bed. Their relationship like others I’ve read by Nora Roberts was unique. Gull is a thinker, prone to analysing and a blunt, no bull s*** kind of guy, I really liked him and how he would with his logic make Ro clam and make her laugh even when she was angry or tired and exhausted.

I also enjoyed Lucas and his relationship with the principal Ella, I thought it was sweet.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 28 April 2011
I loved this book Ms Roberts is on fire pardon the pun! It is a gripping read and with many twists it keeps you guessing til the end. In this book Rowan is type of paratrooper/firefighter who lost her partner before we join her. She meets a new Rookie Gull who she works with to find out who is trying to harm her and the others in her unit to get revenge on her partner's death. Steamy romance abounds as there is also a nice side story with a romance between Rowan's father and a principal. I would recommend this book as a very good read.
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on 16 May 2011
I love Nora Roberts books as I can trust her to take me scary places and yet also take me safely out again and leave me feeling good and not scared silly. She does take many risks with this book and fire is shown as the feared and scary force that it is when it takes hold of a landscape and I must admit there is no way however brave I am feeling that I could do what these firefighters do - leaping out of an airplane and then fighting a fire, by cutting down trees and creating fire brakes, a difficult process at any time but in the situation of out of control and jumping fire in a dry landscape is no easy feat and she had me believing it and sharing in the scary and risky process - to do this and have a murderer in your midst in a small tight group of firefighters is incredibly scary and she does not skimp on this side of the book, so there is little let up in the scariness this time! Nora Roberts has really done her homework and this is a scary and convincing book with the light relief of a romance in the background! I enjoyed it immensely and would recommend it to any one who likes this genre. Its also a good thriller if you have never read Miss Roberts and are not sure you will like them! She rarely disappoints!
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