Saturday, May 20, 2023

Review: Identity by Nora Roberts

Identity by Nora Roberts
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Genre: Romantic Suspense 
Identity cover
ISBN: 9781250284112
Release Date: May 23, 2023
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | Audible

Former Army brat Morgan Albright has finally planted roots in a friendly neighborhood near Baltimore. Her friend and roommate Nina helps her make the mortgage payments, as does Morgan's job as a bartender. But after she and Nina host their first dinner party—attended by Luke, the flirtatious IT guy who'd been chatting her up at the bar—her carefully built world is shattered. The back door glass is broken, cash and jewelry are missing, her car is gone, and Nina lies dead on the floor.

Soon, a horrific truth emerges: It was Morgan who let the monster in. "Luke" is actually a cold-hearted con artist named Gavin who targets a particular type of woman, steals her assets and identity, and then commits his ultimate goal: murder.

What the FBI tells Morgan is beyond chilling. Nina wasn't his type. Morgan is. Nina was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. And Morgan's nightmare is just beginning. Soon she has no choice but to flee to her mother's home in Vermont. While she struggles to build something new, she meets another man, Miles Jameson. He isn't flashy or flirtatious, and his family business has deep roots in town. But Gavin is still out there hunting new victims, and he hasn't forgotten the one who got away.

Morgan Albright had a home and life she loved and a roommate who was like a sister to her. Everything was going perfectly and the former Army brat was putting down the roots she so desperately yearned for. Then a monster took it all. The seemingly charming IT guy Morgan had started seeing turned out to be psychopath Gavin Rozwell. He stole her identity and murdered Nina, but Morgan survived. Retreating to Vermont, Morgan moves in with her mother and grandmother to start rebuilding her life. This time she meets another man, one as genuine and kind as Rozwell was false and cruel. But Rozwell is still out there, and Morgan is the one that got away from him…

Identity is an engaging romantic suspense that is classic Nora Roberts. Morgan is a heroine who is easy to root for. She’s smart, strong, and a survivor. She’s not perfect, not invulnerable – Rozwell proves that – but she doesn’t break even in her darkest moments. She goes through a nightmare and still doesn’t lose herself. I enjoyed watching Morgan find her new dream, her new life in Vermont. I loved watching her claim her life, whether it was working behind the bar, making home improvements, or building new relationships.

One of those relationships is with Miles Jameson. His family owns the local resort where Morgan gets a job managing the bar. Miles has deep roots in the area and the resort is very much a family business with each member playing to their strengths. I loved his relationships with his family and how Morgan became a part of all that. He and Morgan have good chemistry and it was easy to fall into their romance. They went from mutual attraction to something much deeper in an organic way. Roberts lets the story breathe, allows everything time to grow and develop without ever slowing the pace of the book.

The characters – both main and supporting – all shine in Identity. Roberts brought the world to life so well that I hated to put the book down. The hunt for Rozwell was compelling but never overshadowed Morgan and Miles or the life they were building. In other words, Roberts perfectly balanced the romance with the suspense. This book was addictive pure and simple and everything about it worked for me. Identity entertained from the first page to the last and I cannot wait to re-read it.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.