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This has to be one of the stranger pairings of Jayne Ann Krentz/Jayne Castle books. After Dark is the prequel to After Glow - just out recently under the Castle name. It was a super paranormal/off-world tale that I really adored and thought it a great, vibrant tale, much in the old Krentz mold. Strangely, it was not received well by her fans at the time - before the big Paranormal Romance boom. Its reception was so cold that her publisher put off putting out anymore in this series for nearly four years. I guess the Paranormals burning up the charts caused them to rethink that line, and they brought out the sequel to After Dark - After Glow - which received great reviews. My, my what a time frame can mean to the readers mind? Soft Focus was a very enjoyable Single Title Romantic Suspense (meaning before Krentz and her publishers started doing the Trilogy releases - 1 good strong tale followed by two weaker ones). It was a very enjoyable read, but not Krentz at her best. So why the putting of the Krentz tale and the Castle Tale together, where there is nothing to connect them, especially since both are still in print? My guess to get your money. How many people buy this without looking closely to see they are reprints? I could see putting After Dark and After Glow into one double book, they belong together. This marketing smacks of just wanting more bucks.
After Dark was a great Off-World tale of Harmony, where earth travellers colonised and then were cut off from Earth connections when the "curtain" closed. (See Amaryllis, Zinnia and Orchard, books set on the same planet). A race of aliens once lived on the planet, leaving behind vast underground ruins, all protected by "trap" illusions. It takes a special sort of "detangler" to derazzle the traps that were known to fry people's minds. Lydia Smith is a detangler for an archaeologist team working in the eerie green glowing underground. When something goes wrong, Lydia finds herself without a job or a professional reputation. In comes Emmett London, who is tracking down lost antiques. He hires Lydia as a consultant. Alien ghosts and "traps" start haunting the couple left and right as it's obvious someone doesn't want the team to solve the riddle of the missing alien artifacts. Lydia and Emmett sizzle. This was one paranormal that was ahead of the pack.
In Soft Focus, Elizabeth is an all business heroine (typical JAK!). She applies the same cost and profit in her business life to her romance life. So after a one night stand with Jack Fairfax, and Elizabeth discovers Jack deceived her, she wants to cut her losses. Jack is not willing to let her do it, and uses their business contract to keep a leash on the spunky lady.
Jack owns Excalibur, a cutting edge technology firm. When he discovers there is sabotage going on that could put them both in the red financially, Elizabeth has to let Jack back into her life. If she helps Jack save Excalibur, she stands to make millions of dollars. Together they search for a missing scientist who made off with a new special crystal. Elizabeth and Jack follow the clues to a film festival and the fun begins, with Jack keeping an eye on winning Elizabeth back as well as saving his firm.
Two very enjoyable reads. Two oddly mismatched books. If you are a JAK fan, check your shelves. You likely already own both!
Super use of Multi-POV (Point of View), the way all romances should be written!
0Comment| 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 5 July 2004
If you are a collector of JAK then you probably own the individual copies of this double edition - Soft Focus by JAK 1999 & AfterDark by alter-ego Jayne Castle 2000)To new readers who missed these editions like myself both books are her usual standard with laughs and a good mystery story. I prefer her paranormal work generally and was not disappointed with After Dark with characters I liked especially Fuzz the dust bunny. Soft Focus, although not my favourite was a good read on the whole.
0Comment| 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
This has to be one of the stranger pairings of Jayne Ann Krentz/Jayne Castle books. After Dark is the prequel to After Glow - just out recently under the Castle name. It was a super paranormal/off-world tale that I really adored and thought it a great, vibrant tale, much in the old Krentz mold. Strangely, it was not received well by her fans at the time - before the big Paranormal Romance boom. Its reception was so cold that her publisher put off putting out anymore in this series for nearly four years. I guess the Paranormals burning up the charts caused them to rethink that line, and they brought out the sequel to After Dark - After Glow - which received great reviews. My, my what a time frame can mean to the readers mind? Soft Focus was a very enjoyable Single Title Romantic Suspense (meaning before Krentz and her publishers started doing the Trilogy releases - 1 good strong tale followed by two weaker ones). It was a very enjoyable read, but not Krentz at her best. So why the putting of the Krentz tale and the Castle Tale together, where there is nothing to connect them, especially since both are still in print? My guess to get your money. How many people buy this without looking closely to see they are reprints? I could see putting After Dark and After Glow into one double book, they belong together. This marketing smacks of just wanting more bucks.
After Dark was a great Off-World tale of Harmony, where earth travellers colonised and then were cut off from Earth connections when the "curtain" closed. (See Amaryllis, Zinnia and Orchard, books set on the same planet). A race of aliens once lived on the planet, leaving behind vast underground ruins, all protected by "trap" illusions. It takes a special sort of "detangler" to derazzle the traps that were known to fry people's minds. Lydia Smith is a detangler for an archaeologist team working in the eerie green glowing underground. When something goes wrong, Lydia finds herself without a job or a professional reputation. In comes Emmett London, who is tracking down lost antiques. He hires Lydia as a consultant. Alien ghosts and "traps" start haunting the couple left and right as it's obvious someone doesn't want the team to solve the riddle of the missing alien artifacts. Lydia and Emmett sizzle. This was one paranormal that was ahead of the pack.
In Soft Focus, Elizabeth is an all business heroine (typical JAK!). She applies the same cost and profit in her business life to her romance life. So after a one night stand with Jack Fairfax, and Elizabeth discovers Jack deceived her, she wants to cut her losses. Jack is not willing to let her do it, and uses their business contract to keep a leash on the spunky lady.
Jack owns Excalibur, a cutting edge technology firm. When he discovers there is sabotage going on that could put them both in the red financially, Elizabeth has to let Jack back into her life. If she helps Jack save Excalibur, she stands to make millions of dollars. Together they search for a missing scientist who made off with a new special crystal. Elizabeth and Jack follow the clues to a film festival and the fun begins, with Jack keeping an eye on winning Elizabeth back as well as saving his firm.
Two very enjoyable reads. Two oddly mismatched books. If you are a JAK fan, check your shelves. You likely already own both! Super use of Multi-POV (Point of View), the way all romances should be written!
0Comment| 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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