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A Dark Lure

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Author: Loreth Anne White

Published: July 1st 2015 by Montlake Romance

Format: Kindle Edition , 418 pages

Isbn: null

Language: English


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Twelve years ago, Sarah Baker was abducted by the Watt Lake Killer and sexually assaulted for months before managing to escape. The killer was caught, but Sarah lost everything: her marriage, her child, and the life she loved.Struggling with PTSD, Sarah changes her name to Olivia West and finds sanctuary working on Broken Bar Ranch. But as her scars finally begin to heal, Twelve years ago, Sarah Baker was abducted by the Watt Lake Killer and sexually assaulted for months before managing to escape. The killer was caught, but Sarah lost everything: her marriage, her child, and the life she loved.Struggling with PTSD, Sarah changes her name to Olivia West and finds sanctuary working on Broken Bar Ranch. But as her scars finally begin to heal, a cop involved with her horrific case remains convinced the Watt Lake Killer is still out there. He sets a lure for the murderer, and a fresh body is discovered. Now Olivia must face the impossible—could the butcher be back, this time to finish the job?As a frigid winter isolates the ranch, only one person can help Olivia: Cole McDonough, a writer, adventurer, and ranch heir who stirs long-dormant feelings in her. But this time, Olivia’s determination to shut out her past may destroy more than her chance at love. It could cost her her life.

30 review for A Dark Lure

  1. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    A Dark Lure by Loreth Anne White is a 2015 Montlake publication. I won a copy of ‘The Dark Bones’, the second book in this series, so I thought it might be a good idea to back track and read this first book in the series, although I see there has been a rather large time gap between installments. All the same, I’m glad I discovered this author! Sarah Baker was the lone survivor of the Watt Lake Killer. Twelve years later, after losing everything she held dear and still battling PTSD, Sarah chang A Dark Lure by Loreth Anne White is a 2015 Montlake publication. I won a copy of ‘The Dark Bones’, the second book in this series, so I thought it might be a good idea to back track and read this first book in the series, although I see there has been a rather large time gap between installments. All the same, I’m glad I discovered this author! Sarah Baker was the lone survivor of the Watt Lake Killer. Twelve years later, after losing everything she held dear and still battling PTSD, Sarah changed her name to Olivia, and found a modicum of solace working at the Broken Bar Ranch. However, the ranch owner is dying, leaving Olivia's future and that of the ranch, in limbo. Believing she is making the right decision, Olivia contacts Cole McDonough, one the ranch heirs, to inform him of his father’s ill health. Although Cole hasn’t spoken to his father in years, he flies home knowing there won’t be a fatted calf awaiting his return. Meanwhile, a former cop who worked the Watt Lake case is convinced the wrong man was sent to prison and is desperately hoping to solve the case before it’s too late. While this is a very graphic and tense thriller, the story has plenty of depth, especially when it comes to family dynamics, with a nice romantic element, as well. There are several different threads running at once, but at no time did the story feel too busy. The relationship with Cole and his father, along with the greedy ploys to control the ranch adds drama, the relationship between the cop and his daughter, Tori, is poignant and very bittersweet, and the romance between Cole and Olivia is well-done and realistic. However, Olivia is being stalked by someone, hinting that the Watt Lake Killer is still out there. The suspense builds at an unbearable pace, and the atmosphere becomes taut and riveting as the final showdown brings us face to face with a clever and diabolical serial killer and all the pending threads are woven together seamlessly. This genre has really suffered a downward slide in recent years and I usually wind up feeling very frustrated by it. It is so nice to find an author who understands the genre, and knows how to write romantic suspense the way it should be written. Now I’m really looking forward to reading the second installment!! 4 stars

  2. 4 out of 5

    Duchess Nicole

    BAM! That is how it's DONE, folks! It is 4:58 in the morning as I sit here tapping out this review. The last 150 pages of this book had me enthralled. From page one, the whodunnit and the twists and turns made it ridiculously hard to stop reading to live my life. I'm telling you, as soon as I thought I figured out a plot twist, something new would be uncovered. It was like the author was saying "No, no, no. Don't you remember this guy..." And I'd change my mind again, only to be led down another BAM! That is how it's DONE, folks! It is 4:58 in the morning as I sit here tapping out this review. The last 150 pages of this book had me enthralled. From page one, the whodunnit and the twists and turns made it ridiculously hard to stop reading to live my life. I'm telling you, as soon as I thought I figured out a plot twist, something new would be uncovered. It was like the author was saying "No, no, no. Don't you remember this guy..." And I'd change my mind again, only to be led down another line of thought. I wrestled with two or three scenarios for the entirety of the books. And that ending! Wow!!! It just doesn't get much more intense than this. I'd recommend this to readers who like a little romance with their suspense, and those who can take the nitty gritty side of things. This author pulls no punches. The heroine went through every woman's worst nightmare, and we the readers get to hear about it all. There are a LOT of people involved in this multi-layered, strangely not coincidental convergence of connected characters. No ponies, butterflies and rainbows here. No, sir. But it IS very well done. I'm possibly a little scared of the woods now...and the dark. I may hold off on camping for a bit. A hero who needs to be a hero again, a heroine who has been broken down in unimaginable ways, a cop who's not even sure himself if he's on the right side, a little girl who's growing up too fast, and a sadistic, sociopathic killer who's come back for round two...makes for one hell of a ride. Advance Copy provided by Montlake Publishing

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mo

    3.5 STARS This could easily have been a 4 or 5 star read. But in the end it was just too cliched and predictable. Everything just fell neatly into place. I couldn't buy it. Yes, we often have to suspend the disbelief when reading books but I just couldn't with this one. The first 80% of the book really worked for me - it was the last part that sort of fell apart and I was sort of rolling my eyes half the time. He was gone. Just shadow and light. I will definitely check out more from this author. 3.5 STARS This could easily have been a 4 or 5 star read. But in the end it was just too cliched and predictable. Everything just fell neatly into place. I couldn't buy it. Yes, we often have to suspend the disbelief when reading books but I just couldn't with this one. The first 80% of the book really worked for me - it was the last part that sort of fell apart and I was sort of rolling my eyes half the time. He was gone. Just shadow and light. I will definitely check out more from this author. I lost my original review so this is just a quick re-hash. Who was the game and who was the hunter? The writing was excellent. My original review had more detail but I cannot muster up the enthusiasm to write more.

  4. 5 out of 5

    ♥Rachel♥

    A Dark Lure was a suspenseful mystery that gave me chills! Olivia escaped a horrific situation, damaged but not completely broken. However, her personal life fell apart and she changed her identity and re-located to a ranch where she could work and put the past behind her. Unfortunately, the past is about to catch up with Olivia. This time though, she has experience and people at her back. I really admired Olivia having the strength to move on and not wallow in self-pity. At first I didn’t unde A Dark Lure was a suspenseful mystery that gave me chills! Olivia escaped a horrific situation, damaged but not completely broken. However, her personal life fell apart and she changed her identity and re-located to a ranch where she could work and put the past behind her. Unfortunately, the past is about to catch up with Olivia. This time though, she has experience and people at her back. I really admired Olivia having the strength to move on and not wallow in self-pity. At first I didn’t understand why she was pushing some of the warning signs away and rationalizing them, but as more was revealed I totally got it. I immediately loved Cole and his inquisitive mind. I liked that he didn’t take things at face value. He was sexy and magnetic. The attraction between him and Olivia was immediate and strong: A quick smile lit her eyes, and his stomach zinged, a whirlwind of feelings surging through him—respect, admiration, compassion…a desire to protect. And just plain old desire. He wanted her. Pure and simple. It struck him bold in the face. For obvious reasons, Olivia hadn’t felt attracted to a man in a long time, and so she was surprised to be so drawn to Cole. The romance between Olivia and Cole was spot on and in just the right amount. I wanted to strangle Gage for putting Olivia in such danger! A chill tickled over his skin. With it came a thread of fear. Could he control this? Could he keep them all safe? Or had he set something utterly reckless in motion? Yes! Yes, you did set something “utterly reckless in motion”! Part of the story was in the killer’s POV and he gave me the creeps! Even though I had the killer’s POV in some chapters, it was written in such a way that his identity was still a question, and I liked that I was kept in the dark, guessing. I thoroughly enjoyed A Dark Lure, the mystery, the uneasy vibe it evoked, and multilayered/likable characters made this story a win for me. Loreth Anne White’s writing was beautiful and I felt like I was at this Canadian lodge right in the middle of fall. It made me long for a cabin vacation! With a strong male and a shotgun nearby, perhaps? Hey, you never know what could happen in secluded woods! I’m excited to be picking up Ms. White’s next novel soon: In the Waning Light. A copy was kindly provided by Montlake Romance via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    In this stunning series debut, Loreth Anne White takes readers into rural British Columbia to discover how a small town can bring back horrors of a life erased and be the perfect spot for a serial killer to continue the hunt. After being abducted, raped, and tortured, Sarah Baker escaped her kidnapper, a serial killer with a penchant for ‘hunting’ his victims in the spring. She put that life behind her a dozen years ago, as she did the baby that grew inside her. Re-invented as Olivia West, she n In this stunning series debut, Loreth Anne White takes readers into rural British Columbia to discover how a small town can bring back horrors of a life erased and be the perfect spot for a serial killer to continue the hunt. After being abducted, raped, and tortured, Sarah Baker escaped her kidnapper, a serial killer with a penchant for ‘hunting’ his victims in the spring. She put that life behind her a dozen years ago, as she did the baby that grew inside her. Re-invented as Olivia West, she now works in a rural British Columbia community, on the Broken Bar Ranch. There, Olivia invites guests who wish to stay in the chalets or camp in the secluded woods, employed by the wealthy and elderly, Myron McDonough. In the lead-up to Thanksgiving, Olivia prepares to welcome a handful of guests, while also discovering a secret her boss has been keeping. Myron is dying and has little time left, but refuses to tell his estranged children. On a whim, Olivia tracks down Cole McDonough and makes sure he knows how dire things are at Broken Bar. Meanwhile, Olivia welcomes some people for the weekend, including Gage Burton and his daughter, Tori, as well as an older couple who are up from Arizona. This rag-tag group interact intermittently, while Olivia is forced to deal with the McDonough drama, especially Cole who is just now realising how little he knows about his father. When news breaks of a horrible murder outside Vancouver, many notice the similarities to the Watt River Killer from over a decade before. Olivia has flashbacks to the killer she was sure had been caught, yet this new victim was found in much the same way as those women she saw ‘hunted’. Gage remembers working tangentially on the case in which the Watt River Killer was apprehended, yet this seems all too familiar. Could this be a copycat or is the real killer still out there? With all the hype, there is someone lurking in the shadows, waiting for the perfect time to strike again, having located ‘Sarah’ after all these years. Will the hunter get his chance yet again, or is the prey wily enough to escape a second time? Drama mounts as the story progresses, in which past lives come crashing together and victimhood takes on a whole new meaning. Fans of a slow-developing thriller will want to check this out, with its Canadian flavour on full display. I turned to this book because I was offered an advance copy of the second novel in the series. I like to start at the beginning and am pleased I did, as the author develops a stunning lure (pun intended) for her reader in this thriller. The story begins slowly, but picks up the pace as the pieces begin to push together, offering wonderful descriptions and great characters. Olivia West holds her own, forced to stuff her past away and try not to relive it. However, the outward scars and flashbacks are hard to hide, even in this remote community. With the revelation of new killings, she cannot keep it all bottled up, though she tries. Her interactions with Cole McDonough offer some interesting insight into both their characters. White uses this time to tap into her past as a romance writer, developing a complex web of love and lust between them, without removing the thrills of a killer from the plot. Cole is a complicated man himself, having left the riches that his father had once he was banished for his own error. Living the care-free life, Cole must come to terms with what is going on in his own backyard, with a dying father and choices he made that will forever overshadow his decision-making abilities. Others within the story have their own interesting quirks, from a cancer-riddled cop to a teenager trying to come to terms with her mother’s death, keeping the reader attentive to follow all the storylines. White effectively weaves these characters together in a story that will send chills up the spine and keep the reader forging ahead in the Thanksgiving snow just to see how things turn out. With this debut, one can only hope that there is more to come in the second novel, which I am rushing to begin right away! Kudos, Madam White, for keeping my attention throughout. I am so eager to see what happens and how you will ‘lure’ me in yet again! Love/hate the review? An ever-growing collection of others appears at: http://pecheyponderings.wordpress.com/ A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/...

  6. 4 out of 5

    ✨Susan✨

    This is a well written psychological, suspense thriller set on a ranch in the mountains of British Columbia. All of the characters have had some kind of tragedy in their past that has damaged them and yet somehow, when they were all thrown together, they ended up helping each other. It was a bit predictable but very suspenseful at the same time because of all the little side stories that strayed from the main plot. The ending was exciting and it brought current events, and past events full circl This is a well written psychological, suspense thriller set on a ranch in the mountains of British Columbia. All of the characters have had some kind of tragedy in their past that has damaged them and yet somehow, when they were all thrown together, they ended up helping each other. It was a bit predictable but very suspenseful at the same time because of all the little side stories that strayed from the main plot. The ending was exciting and it brought current events, and past events full circle. A good mystery/thriller with just the right amount of emotion.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Simply Sam ツ

    I'm calling it at 25%-ish. Now normally if I throw in the towel on a book I don't rate or review it. I just remove it from my queue and carry on. However, there are a few special circumstances where I feel like I need to explain why a book is just not doing it for me. This is one of those times. Be warned, there are spoilers ahead. Read at your own peril. I actually have too many grievances to list so I'll just try to stick to the primary offenses. First off, there is absolutely nothing original I'm calling it at 25%-ish. Now normally if I throw in the towel on a book I don't rate or review it. I just remove it from my queue and carry on. However, there are a few special circumstances where I feel like I need to explain why a book is just not doing it for me. This is one of those times. Be warned, there are spoilers ahead. Read at your own peril. I actually have too many grievances to list so I'll just try to stick to the primary offenses. First off, there is absolutely nothing original about the plot. Dying man estranged from his family. Check. Said family only waiting to sell off the old mans business because they've no interest in the family legacy. Check. Perfect cabin in the woods serial killer setting. Check. The cop who just can't let go of a case. Check. Ridiculously good looking "prodigal son" (and I say this because both he and his father called him that-another pet peeve of mine-like every time a son returns home he has to be the prodigal son) with a troubled, heartbreaking past. And his name is Cole no less. Check. The tough as nails woman with a mysterious past just trying to make a new life for herself. Check. The suave serial killer, dubbed The Watt Lake Killer, looking to settle the score with the one who got away. Check. Okay, enough of the checklists. You get the point. This is wholly unoriginal and uninspired. With that out of the way, I can now get to the real issues, the meat behind my total lack of even the teeniest desire to finish this one out. First, the author obviously does not think the reader is smart enough or intuitive enough to figure things out on their own. She must spell it out for us. For example: Olivia (the main chick) goes through this spill, specifically letting the reader know that she is not carrying a cell phone. That she in fact carries a satellite phone. What is the distinction you might ask? Well, I'm glad you did because she also explains why she carries a satellite phone instead of a normal cell phone. It's so she can have reception anywhere without relying on cell phone towers. Thank you so much for the info Olivia. Pans to the next scene with the serial killer. He's scoping out the lay of the land around the lodge and cabins where he spots big ass cell tower. He laughs maniacally (not really-I'm adding that for dramatic effect) and says, "Yes, yes, my pretty! I shall take you out and no one will ever be able to make contact with the outside world again! Bwahaha! This is my perfect nefarious plan! No one can stop me now!" (Again, those weren't his exact words but they may as well have been.) Wow, thanks for setting that up so nicely for us. That's not the only time this happens. It's really grating and annoying. Please, please, please leave something for us to puzzle and ponder. You really don't have to tell us everything. Most of us are smart enough to use deductive reasoning, to evaluate the clever clues left by clever writers and use those to form the bigger picture in our mind's eye. Really. I promise. Now, this is the big one, the main "oh no she didn't" that really pissed me off: Remember the cop who can't let go of the case? Well he is convinced that they arrested the wrong man for the crimes and that the real perp is out there still. So what does he do? Why, he goes catfishing of course. You see, shortly after she escaped from the evil serial killer's clutches, Olivia (whose name was something else at the time of her kidnapping-she changed it after she also becomes estranged from her family and decided to start a new life) apparently had a daughter that she put up for adoption. She'd be about 12 years old now. Well, what are the odds that after our serial killer is released from prison, where he has been the entire time convicted on unrelated charges, he pretends to be the daughter looking for her mother while the cop who can't get past the case is pretending to be the mom looking for her daughter and they end up finding each other out there on the interwebs? Well pretty damn good I guess. Okay. Okay. I get it. The cop (Gage? Paul? Hell, I don't even remember his name) just wants to make sure that he got the right guy, that this Watt Lake killer is not still out there somewhere. So when the little girl AKA the bad guy asks for proof of her (Olivia's) identity, the cop gives him a false name and address with Olivia's picture right? To set a carefully monitored trap for him, RIGHT? Oh no, that is FALSE. He gives the serial killer Olivia's new name, address, and place of employment WITHOUT her permission. Who the fuck does that? What in the world gives him the right to put her life in danger without her even knowing about it?? And even after it happens, does he call to give her a heads up? Nope. When they find a body laid out with TWLK's signature MO not far from the ranch where Olivia is working/living does he immediately pick up the phone to call her (she has a satellite phone after all--she'll always have signal)? No again. What he does is he packs up his 11, almost 12 y/o daughter (Gee, I wonder who she might be?) and heads out to the camp to find the killer himself. Wait. Hold up. You think there is a serial killer at or near this lodge hunting for his last victim and you also think it's a good idea to bring your daughter (who is also more than likely Olivia's daughter and quite possibly TWLK's as well) and put her in his sights as well. Are you effing kidding me?? Sorry. Nope. Just nope. This does not work for me. Not at all. This is where we must part ways book. You are dead to me book, do you hear me? Dead.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sheyla ✎

    "You are strong. You are enough." Where does this author gets her inspiration? Because by all means..she needs to continue writing. Her stories have a uniqueness to them. They are so different and so good. I barely sleep or eat because I NEED to know what happens next. The Dark Lure is an amazing rollercoaster of feelings. There is sadness, pain, impotence, excitement, regret and hope. Much needed hope. Sarah Baker, now Olivia West, has known all of these feelings. She was abducted, tortured "You are strong. You are enough." Where does this author gets her inspiration? Because by all means..she needs to continue writing. Her stories have a uniqueness to them. They are so different and so good. I barely sleep or eat because I NEED to know what happens next. The Dark Lure is an amazing rollercoaster of feelings. There is sadness, pain, impotence, excitement, regret and hope. Much needed hope. Sarah Baker, now Olivia West, has known all of these feelings. She was abducted, tortured and raped for months. She is the sole survivor of the Watt Lake Killer. “But sometimes people are broken and don’t know how to mend because they aren’t able to say what they need or deeply want. Sometimes you get to a point in life where you realize you’ve made a terrible mistake and you desperately need to fix it, but it’s so deep and bitterly ingrained you can’t start.” After twelve years, her recent found peace is about to come to an end. The killer or a copycat is back chasing her. At first, she just thinks she's been paranoid but she can't seem to shake the feeling that someone is watching her. Soon, more clues point to evil lurking in the shadows. Cole McDonough has been gone more than a decade from his home, Broken Bar Ranch. After a terrible accident which took his mother and brother's life, he had to move away. His father blames him for the accident as much as he blames himself. Now, he is back home and Olivia is a mystery he wants to unravel. Clearly she has secrets and he wants nothing else than to get to know the real woman behind the facade. When her life is in danger, he's determined to help her survive it. “Without fear, there cannot be true courage” This book is amazing and even though it guts you, it's worth the pain. The characters are so well developed that you can almost see them going through the motions. You want to jump in and help them or stop them from doing something moronic - you hear me constable Gage Burton? I'm talking about you here. Now, I need to read In the Waning Light. “Whatever. Wherever you’re wallowing in your own self-pity, drinking yourself into a stupor every night is not going to bring your family back to you. You’re no survivor, you know that? You know dick about surviving. All you know is your own narcissistic pursuit.” Cliffhanger: No 5/5 Fangs MrsLeif's Two Fangs About It | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

  9. 5 out of 5

    Linda Strong

    Twelve years ago Sara Baker was kidnapped, tortured, raped, and after being held hostage for months, during which time she became pregnant, she was turned loose in a mountainous area and hunted like an animal. By the grace of God, she managed to escape. She now goes by a different name .. Olivia .... and she still suffers flashbacks. She has not only lost all sense of self, but her husband and parents turned against her when they learned of all she had endured and the shame of having 'his' child. Twelve years ago Sara Baker was kidnapped, tortured, raped, and after being held hostage for months, during which time she became pregnant, she was turned loose in a mountainous area and hunted like an animal. By the grace of God, she managed to escape. She now goes by a different name .. Olivia .... and she still suffers flashbacks. She has not only lost all sense of self, but her husband and parents turned against her when they learned of all she had endured and the shame of having 'his' child. She felt forced to give her baby up for adoption. The man who kidnapped her was caught and died in prison. So who is shadowing her ... leaving 'gifts' that remind her of her captor? There are lots of suspects ... a cop who had worked her case and his daughter who have booked a cabin where Olivia works. the dying owner's son who has not been home in many years .... the owner's daughter who wants Olivia to leave so that the property can be sold ... and there's the unethical man who is depending on having the property for a resort. I have to tell you .... at the end my throat was constricted and I shed a few tears. No spoilers. I really liked Sara/Olivia. Even with all she endured she has emerged a lot stronger than she believes she is. She keeps trudging forward and fighting the flashbacks with all that she has. The ending came as a real surprise ..... out of the blue. So who will live ..and who will die before the mystery can be solved? My thanks to NetGalley/Amazon Publishing for the opportunity to read and review A Dark Lure.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Loved, LOVED this book! This was my choice for the Kindle First Choice for June, and I was torn whether to go for this book (not typically my genre) or a fantasy YA book (so my go to genre) and I decided to go out of my comfort zone and take a risk. And what a brilliant risk it was, though I suppose it cannot really be classed as a risk when you are only spending £1! Anyway, let's move on! Right from the start this book captured my interest, the whole back story of a broken woman who is a survivor Loved, LOVED this book! This was my choice for the Kindle First Choice for June, and I was torn whether to go for this book (not typically my genre) or a fantasy YA book (so my go to genre) and I decided to go out of my comfort zone and take a risk. And what a brilliant risk it was, though I suppose it cannot really be classed as a risk when you are only spending £1! Anyway, let's move on! Right from the start this book captured my interest, the whole back story of a broken woman who is a survivor from a horrific experience, who was struggling to take charge of her new life and live was so compelling. I really liked the focus on the brutal mental scars and how actually it can take such a long time to recover. This book can be classed as a romance, but I would say the focus is more on self-love, learning how to accept what you are and coming to terms with it and moving onto loving it. I felt it offered a very powerful message of accepting the past and creating a better future. I really liked the characters, Olivia and Cole were wonderfully broken and I loved their interaction. Olivia was especially amazing, her inner thoughts about survival really had me rooting for her, she was such a strong person! I really liked that we got a POV from the Watt Lake Killer, as I enjoyed hearing his side of why he abducted, raped and eventually killed woman. Getting into the psyche was interesting and horrifying at the same time. But I also loved the side characters, especially Cole's father, a fab old, grumpy man who was beautifully sweet, and Tori was good to hear from and see her piece together her background. The whole story was such a page turner. I was never bored, or skim reading to get to the good parts. Loreth Anne White skilfully manages different POVs, as well as quite a few different things happening at the same time in her story. I really got behind the main characters, so much that I was shouting out loud at the ending! All in all, this is a engaging, suspense-filled, powerful, beautiful story that leaves you feeling empowered about taking charge of your future. Would totally recommend! I have never been so happy that I didn't go for my obvious choice of the fantasy book!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Brittany

    4 Stars!! 🌟🌟🌟🌟 But sometimes people are broken and don’t know how to mend because they aren’t able to say what they need or deeply want. Sometimes you get to a point in life where you realize you’ve made a terrible mistake and you desperately need to fix it, but it’s so deep and bitterly ingrained you can’t start.” 12 years ago, Sarah Baker was abducted and assaulted for months before escaping. Her captor was caught, but Sarah lost the life she loved, her family and a child. While struggling 4 Stars!! 🌟🌟🌟🌟 But sometimes people are broken and don’t know how to mend because they aren’t able to say what they need or deeply want. Sometimes you get to a point in life where you realize you’ve made a terrible mistake and you desperately need to fix it, but it’s so deep and bitterly ingrained you can’t start.” 12 years ago, Sarah Baker was abducted and assaulted for months before escaping. Her captor was caught, but Sarah lost the life she loved, her family and a child. While struggling with PTSD, Sarah changes her name to Oliva and finds a job and sanctuary living and working at Broken Bar Ranch. As soon as her scars are finally beginning to heal. All hell breaks loose. The cop involved with her case all those years ago, remains convinced that the real killer/abductor is still out there. He sets a lure for him and a new body is discovered. Now Olivia has to face the past again- could it really be him?? Did he come back to finish the Job? As winter approaches the ranch, only one person can help Olivia. Cole McDonough, a writer, and the ranch heir. He stirs up something inside Olivia that she didn't even know she craved. But this time, Olivia's fight to shut out the past may ruin her chance at love and cost her- with her life. I enjoyed this book so much! It was full of twists and turns- and had me hanging by the edge of my seat. The last 100 pages were crazy intense and I loved it! I thought the characters were great and the story and plot were well thought out. Each character had their own issues to deal with so there was a great bit of depth to them and they all end up intertwined with one another. The ending was great and you are holding your breath right till the last word. I thought Sarah/ Olivia was a fantastic MC. We get to go inside her head and watch as things unfold for her, and see her growth as the book progresses. Overall I recommend this book! And thought it was a great mystery/thriller with the perfect amount of emotional pull.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

    A Dark Lure, by Loreth Anne White, is a wonderfully addictive story! It is the story of a woman's painstaking survival against all odds. A heroine with remarkable strength. A dark, suspenseful page turner that I couldn't put down. Highly Recommended!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    Twelve years ago, the Watt Lake Killer kidnapped Sarah Baker, locked her up for months while he terrorized and raped her, then turned her loose to hunt her like an animal. Somehow Sarah managed to escape. The culprit was caught and sent to prison where he eventually died. Suffering from PSTD, Sarah lost her husband, her child, and her family over the incident. Changing her name to Olivia West, she starts her life over as a fishing guide at the Broken Bar Ranch. Life on the ranch lets her physical Twelve years ago, the Watt Lake Killer kidnapped Sarah Baker, locked her up for months while he terrorized and raped her, then turned her loose to hunt her like an animal. Somehow Sarah managed to escape. The culprit was caught and sent to prison where he eventually died. Suffering from PSTD, Sarah lost her husband, her child, and her family over the incident. Changing her name to Olivia West, she starts her life over as a fishing guide at the Broken Bar Ranch. Life on the ranch lets her physical and mental wounds begin to heal. But a former cop believes that the wrong man was arrested for the Watt Lake murders. He is trying to lure the killer out in the open and using Olivia as bait. Olivia once again finds her life on the line. This is my first book by this author, but it won't be my last. It took me a little while to figure out exactly what was going on in the story. But once I got everything straight, this book was very hard to put down. The story had a good balance between the suspense portion of the story and the romantic elements. I really liked that Olivia found she could trust the owner's estranged son, Cole McDonough, when he came to the ranch to visit his sick father. There were a lot of twists in the story. I figured most of them out before they were revealed, but it didn't affect my feelings for this book. My rating: 4.5 Stars.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Zannie

    A Dark Lure by Loreth Anne White is a harrowing story of pain, survival, and new beginnings. That seems neat and tidy, but it's not. It's a windy, intricate story. I listened to the Audible version of A Dark Lure, and when I initially saw it was 14 hours, I groaned. BUT I was committed to the blurb and reviews, so I started listening. In my experience, 14 hours of audio typically means three collective hours of minutia. I was very pleasantly surprised. A Dark Lure was all story all the way throug A Dark Lure by Loreth Anne White is a harrowing story of pain, survival, and new beginnings. That seems neat and tidy, but it's not. It's a windy, intricate story. I listened to the Audible version of A Dark Lure, and when I initially saw it was 14 hours, I groaned. BUT I was committed to the blurb and reviews, so I started listening. In my experience, 14 hours of audio typically means three collective hours of minutia. I was very pleasantly surprised. A Dark Lure was all story all the way through to the end. Sure, there's some background info - what story doesn't have that? But the background info was just enough to be exciting and not so much that it dragged. Great balance! The Watt Lake Killer The Watt Lake Killer abducted, continually raped, and held Sarah Baker prisoner, like an animal with a lead around her neck. Whence fall commenced, he handed her a weapon, released her, and began to hunt her. To his shock, Sarah Baker won that hunt. Sarah reinvented her life, and she became Olivia West. She was finally free. The Watt Lake Killer committed suicide in prison, and with her new persona, Olivia settled into her new life. Then things start to happen. Things that give her the niggling feeling that the Watt Lake Killer is back. But isn't he dead? Hmmm... I enjoyed this book enormously. Loreth Anne White can write, that's for sure. And how amazing is the cover? I thought it was VERY suiting to the subject of the book, as was the title. The "good guys" are genuinely likable and the "bad guys" suck. I hate when I don't find the "good guys" to be likable. That is a sure-fire way to ruin a book for me. There's a hurting little girl, a craggy old man, a pompous son, a jerky real estate developer, and of course, a woman who is just trying to survive, both literally and figuratively. From beginning to end, I remained invested in this book. 4-stars for me!

  15. 5 out of 5

    E.

    I keep trying to expand my reading horizons. Exploring different genres, or different corners of the genres I like. I kept passing "A Dark Lure" by because it was frequently categorized as "romantic suspense". I like suspense, but the romantic aspect kind of turned me off. I've got nothing against romance, in a book or otherwise, but when that's the focus of the story I find it a little.... um .... stupid. cheesy. boring. Ok, I've said all of that, to say this: This was a pretty good atmospheric I keep trying to expand my reading horizons. Exploring different genres, or different corners of the genres I like. I kept passing "A Dark Lure" by because it was frequently categorized as "romantic suspense". I like suspense, but the romantic aspect kind of turned me off. I've got nothing against romance, in a book or otherwise, but when that's the focus of the story I find it a little.... um .... stupid. cheesy. boring. Ok, I've said all of that, to say this: This was a pretty good atmospheric suspense thriller. Set in Canada, amidst rivers and forests, fishing and hunting, lots of snow, and lots of evil and violence. We sorta knew what evil was lurking, hunting. There was a little mystery involved in the specifics. The title was a play on words, in that it involved luring someone in, and a hand made fishing lure that kept showing up. And yes, there was romance. I found it a little cheesy but pushed through it. The characters were actually well drawn. They were all broken in their own way. Some were survivors, but they didn't all survive... Some odd words or phrases were repeated enough that it kind of bugged me. "Subterranean" (referring to feelings) and "time folding in/back on itself" (also a feeling). I predicted a couple of the twists, but the plot, writing style and atmosphere made it worth the read. 3.5 stars

  16. 4 out of 5

    LenaRibka

    I actually decided to read ( in my case, listen to) this one because I got the second book of the series on NetGalley, and wanted to start from the beginning, but now I am not sure if I'll read the second book at all. I think I would have liked this book a little more without the stupid romance in it, and if it had been a bit shorter, not to mention an absence of an emotional bond between the main characters (it is how it felt for me), and...really, why this unnecessary sex scene?! It didn't add I actually decided to read ( in my case, listen to) this one because I got the second book of the series on NetGalley, and wanted to start from the beginning, but now I am not sure if I'll read the second book at all. I think I would have liked this book a little more without the stupid romance in it, and if it had been a bit shorter, not to mention an absence of an emotional bond between the main characters (it is how it felt for me), and...really, why this unnecessary sex scene?! It didn't add anything to the story at all, just the opposite. At least I know now that I dislike a f/m suspense romance with a forced sexual tension and a predictable ending with all my heart. Meh.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Yvonne

    4.5 Stars Wow, now that’s how you do a Suspense-Romance. The suspense is front and center and as dark and creepy as anything Karen Rose has written. The romance is a slow build and appropriate for the story. This is a keeper and I'll be sure to read more from this author.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kelli Wilson

    Wow! This was awesome sauce. It's intense, suspenseful, thrilling and a love story to boot! So well done. So well written. It's not a huge twist and turns book, but it's a heart felt locks you in, good guys vs bad guys, intense ride. Loved it!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Michele Rene

    Review to follow

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jan

    ****4.5 Stars**** Review full of spoilers! (view spoiler)[ This has been a hell of a ride and I have enjoyed it loads. It had everything to be a 5 Star read, almost. I don’t read many thrillers but every now and again I come across a psycho in my Romances. Some of them are not built in a solid creepy psycho way and fail as a character whereas other, like Sebastian here, has the ability to make a chill crawl over our skin. I swear I could feel his malevolence. Does this kind of shit really exist in re ****4.5 Stars**** Review full of spoilers! (view spoiler)[ This has been a hell of a ride and I have enjoyed it loads. It had everything to be a 5 Star read, almost. I don’t read many thrillers but every now and again I come across a psycho in my Romances. Some of them are not built in a solid creepy psycho way and fail as a character whereas other, like Sebastian here, has the ability to make a chill crawl over our skin. I swear I could feel his malevolence. Does this kind of shit really exist in real life? I really hope not. Sebastian liked to hunt. Not Bambies and Bunnies though. Humans. He used to capture and keep them like animals. With no clothes and a rope around the neck Sarah was kept all winter, just to be released on spring to be hunted, by him. He whispered into her ear Sarah Baker was the only one among eight women who survived Sebastian’s sick game and ordeal. She escaped and Sebastian went to prison. A few years later he was found dead hanging on his cell. Here is where this story starts. Sebastian being released from prison and looking for Sarah. How?! He was supposed to be dead for God’s sake! Well, you will have to read the book. Sebastian with all that calculating, cold, evil and patience skills that characterize a psycho waited and planned for years, while in prison, a way to find and get Sarah Baker back. Sebastian finally founds Sarah and as an insane person he was he wanted to make sure she would know he was alive sending her a special message: he killed a woman and left her gutted body hanging by the neck on a hook with her entrails spilling out. A kind of signature. She got the message all right. Now, let me tell you about Sarah. Sweet, caring, kind, strong, brave and broken Sarah. I've read dozen stories this year about broken woman. They all feel faded to me after this book. Sarah has been taken, hunted and broken. She lost her child in the middle of this ordeal, her jerk of a husband who couldn't get over what happened to her, her parents and finally her identity, because to carry on living, she had to kill Sarah Baker and become a new person. She was left with nothing apart from scars. What let me down: 1 Tory, the child in the story was way too mature for her age. I can’t imagine my 11 yrs old, under pressure, trying to get in my PC, guessing my password, locating a file and finally transferring it to an e-reader. Also, when reading her thoughts I had this feeling that was a bit too much for her age. 2 Where the hell was Cole when Sarah went crazy wild stabbing Sebastian? Huh? A tad bit of romance we get here. Cole is our hero but I am not going there as I already said much more than my usual. Just need to say that this story kept me on a high up to 90% with that panic edgy followed by the feeling of ignoring everything and everyone *read family and colleagues* hence my 4.5 Stars. How creepy was that? (hide spoiler)]

  21. 5 out of 5

    Elaine

    Who is the hunter? and who is the hunted? Twelve years previously Sarah Clarke is abducted and abused by the Watt Lake Killer...... She escaped........... She now has a new identity and is living and working on a ranch as Oliva West. She is still coming to terms with the terrifying time she was keep captive, she finds peace there. A local cop working on the case back then still believes the murderer is out there and tries to lure him out. But how can that be? the killer was found and is now dea Who is the hunter? and who is the hunted? Twelve years previously Sarah Clarke is abducted and abused by the Watt Lake Killer...... She escaped........... She now has a new identity and is living and working on a ranch as Oliva West. She is still coming to terms with the terrifying time she was keep captive, she finds peace there. A local cop working on the case back then still believes the murderer is out there and tries to lure him out. But how can that be? the killer was found and is now dead. So who is out there watching her and waiting to finish the job and hunt down Olivia/Sarah? and is she ready for the killer this time. My Thoughts Well there is certainly alot of creepy tension in this. Unfortunately it just didn't work for me in a way I thought it would. It started off brilliantly, tense, not over graphic but the author did still give you enough details of Sarah's ordeal to give you a feeling of the type of characters you were dealing with. It had a very atmospheric feel as the story continued. What didn't work for me was as the story progressed was the predictable plot. I found it was a bit all over the place in parts and without giving any spoilers some of the characters actions were ... I do read alot of thriller and suspense type stories and I know what works for me. Although this one didn't, it was still an ok suspenseful read. Great fun reading along with Jan and Mo

  22. 5 out of 5

    Gea

    This was a very dark novel of survival and healing. It's a page turner with a great beautiful but dangerous setting. I don't normally read this genre, but Amazon gave me this book for free through Amazon Prime and to my surprise I read it in a few days. I had a really hard time putting it down. It was deeper than I expected, with a lot of character development and three compelling plot lines. I don't think I've ever read a book with such a brutalized, damaged heroine. There is some romance here, This was a very dark novel of survival and healing. It's a page turner with a great beautiful but dangerous setting. I don't normally read this genre, but Amazon gave me this book for free through Amazon Prime and to my surprise I read it in a few days. I had a really hard time putting it down. It was deeper than I expected, with a lot of character development and three compelling plot lines. I don't think I've ever read a book with such a brutalized, damaged heroine. There is some romance here, but I would not call this book a romance and after Olivia West's horrific trauma it's a miracle she could ever love again. A Dark Lure stretched the bounds of my belief a few times, but overall it was very well written. If you like well written suspense in a remote mountain setting with compelling, finely drawn characters, I would definitely recommend it.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Dee

    5 Stars This is a heartbreaking story which had me welling up at times. It had a few issues such as Gage's (the Cop who was originally working Sarah's/Olivia's case) thoughts and actions and why he did certain things (trying not to give any spoilers!), but he was a desperate man who was obviously unwell and not thinking everything through. I would have liked an epilogue showing Olivia, Cole & Tori living as a family......Sappy I know but that's the romantic in me! Originally was going to give th 5 Stars This is a heartbreaking story which had me welling up at times. It had a few issues such as Gage's (the Cop who was originally working Sarah's/Olivia's case) thoughts and actions and why he did certain things (trying not to give any spoilers!), but he was a desperate man who was obviously unwell and not thinking everything through. I would have liked an epilogue showing Olivia, Cole & Tori living as a family......Sappy I know but that's the romantic in me! Originally was going to give this 4.5 Stars but had to give it the full 5 due to Olivia's strength and will to survive and all the emotions this story stirred in me. This is the 3rd book I have read by Loreth and have tagged her as one of my auto-buy authors.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sandra

    I listened to this book on audio over a period of a few months. This may have detracted from the experience, but I found the story had too many coincidences and was overly written in places. The relationships / sex scenes were slightly cringey ( maybe as I was listening rather than reading??) . Overall I did enjoy the book and it was simple enough story with a limited number of characters so ideal to dip in and out of.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Anita

    The term "Psychological Thriller" is such a cliché. "A Dark Lure" is that and so much more. I had a viscera reaction to this book, it grabbed me on the first page and didn't let go till the last. The characters all grabbed me, dug in deep and would not let me go. Sarah Baker is the only victim of the Watt Lake Killer to survive her captivity and live to tell about it. She should have been hailed a hero and lauded for her strength of character and determination to live. Instead her family turned The term "Psychological Thriller" is such a cliché. "A Dark Lure" is that and so much more. I had a viscera reaction to this book, it grabbed me on the first page and didn't let go till the last. The characters all grabbed me, dug in deep and would not let me go. Sarah Baker is the only victim of the Watt Lake Killer to survive her captivity and live to tell about it. She should have been hailed a hero and lauded for her strength of character and determination to live. Instead her family turned their backs on her and she spiraled down. At her lowest point she comes across a battered, malnourished German Shepard, saves him and saves herself. Sarah reinvents herself as Olivia West and takes a job at manager at the Broken Bar Ranch. There she finds a measure of peace. Three years later the owner, Myron McDonough, is dying. He is estranged from his children, Cole and Jane, and Olivia feels deeply that they should have a chance to reconcile before it is too late. Unknown to Olivia, a cop, Gaga Burton, who worked the Watt Lake Killer case, has for the past right years been searching for who he believes is the real killer and he has laid a trap to bring the killer directly to Olivia's door. When the killer responds to Gage's lure, a deadly game is set in motion and Gage, also terminally ill, may not be able to control the outcome.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Richard

    I felt a bit guilty giving A Dark Lure (audio book) 2 stars, it was so nearly 3 but it was strangely written. We listen to audio books on long car journeys, and as we don’t have too many long journeys, this book took months to complete :) The novel was well written to a point but maybe overwritten. Everything seemed a little too much. The language was too heavily poetical in places. The violence was detailed, graphic and a bit gratuitous. The love scenes were awkward and wince inducing. The sex I felt a bit guilty giving A Dark Lure (audio book) 2 stars, it was so nearly 3 but it was strangely written. We listen to audio books on long car journeys, and as we don’t have too many long journeys, this book took months to complete :) The novel was well written to a point but maybe overwritten. Everything seemed a little too much. The language was too heavily poetical in places. The violence was detailed, graphic and a bit gratuitous. The love scenes were awkward and wince inducing. The sex scenes were explicit and cringy! In fairness, all of this was probably exaggerated as it was a shared listening experience and we didn’t really take to the narrator. On the plus side, although a little unlikely in places, the plot was involving, tense, exciting and the characters well drawn. Loreth Anne White can obviously write well, but to me, needs to tone things down a little.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lynne Davis

    Disappointing This one just didn't do it for me. Some things I just couldn't accept: the idea that a former police officer would try to bait a serial killer using the actual victim's picture and work address? I just couldn't get past it. And the victim had no idea he did this. I couldn't connect with the story. One thing I did like was the author's descriptions of fly fishing in the lake. I've never been much of a fisherman, but now I kinda want to!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Lorraine Southern

    Great read. Intricate and suspenseful, lots of twists and turns. You think you know ‘whodunnit’ but you don’t really know til the end 😉 I’d never heard of this author before coming across her here, but I shall defo hunt out another of hers at some point very soon 🙂

  29. 4 out of 5

    Radd Reader

    ”Can you pinpoint the exact instant your life starts on a collision course with someone else’s? This story creeped me out because it made me think about the strangers I encounter in my every day life. You see the headlines everyday..... - he picked out his victim as he watched her get on the bus - he picked out his victim as he watched her sitting at a table in the coffeeshop - he picked out his victim when he saw her.....wherever-you fill in the blank. Predators are out there-watching and waiti ”Can you pinpoint the exact instant your life starts on a collision course with someone else’s? This story creeped me out because it made me think about the strangers I encounter in my every day life. You see the headlines everyday..... - he picked out his victim as he watched her get on the bus - he picked out his victim as he watched her sitting at a table in the coffeeshop - he picked out his victim when he saw her.....wherever-you fill in the blank. Predators are out there-watching and waiting. 😬😬 In this case...he picked her out while she helped him at a sporting goods store and her life became pure hell because of that chance meeting. This is a story about survival, forgiveness, reconciliation, self-discovery, acceptance, romance, love, closure, and lots of white knuckling along the way. It was clear early on the killer was definitely sick and twisted. ”The Watt Lake Killer had hung, gutted, flayed, and bled out his victims like slaughtered deer. Photos of the shed where he’d done his butchering, images of a generator-powered freezer that had revealed unspeakable horrors. Pictures of the shack beside the shed where he’d shackled and roped his victims alive, where he sexually abused and fed and kept them over the winter before setting them out for a spring hunt.” The heroine lived months with that monster, torturing and raping her, and she survived. What kind of strength does it take to persevere through that?? Unimaginable, that’s for sure. So, how much did I love and respect her??? A whole bunch! Twelve years later, it appears she is once again in danger and I was biting my nails as I witnessed events unfold. There was more to this story than just the suspenseful aspect. Every person in this story had some type of past or current tragedy (even the dog) and those issues were a significant part of the story. There was always something that kept the plot pushing forward and twists and turns that kept me completely engaged. The book had several different POV’s and I’m the type who always likes more, not less. So I very much appreciated the various POV’s and the ability to get inside the head of everyone (including the killer). Also, the violent sexual acts and the hell endured during captivity were off page. Thankfully there were not lengthy descriptions about specific things she went through. I didn’t want to read about what she survived and I was fine with the non-specific references related to her captivity. The writing was fantastic. Lots of imagery and descriptions that enhanced the story. However, sometimes I felt like there were just a few too many descriptions and that muddied up the story a tad (example....I didn’t care what type of sandwich 🥪 they ate). I’m knocking a star off because I felt the book left a couple issues unresolved. 😏 Other than that, this book delivered on so many fronts and I thoroughly enjoyed the rollercoaster ride I experienced. ”It’s not a game until both sides know they’re playing.”

  30. 5 out of 5

    Beatrix

    It's not a game until everyone knows they are playing.... the prey must be aware of the hunter... After finishing and loving Angie Pallorino Series by this author, I knew I wanted to read more from her. Sadly, because Angie Pallorino is now my favorite mystery series, my expectations were too high. I still got what I came to expect from this author: amazing writing, atmospheric setting, unique characters, but the story itself was disappointing. I couldn't get behind the stupidity of certain cha It's not a game until everyone knows they are playing.... the prey must be aware of the hunter... After finishing and loving Angie Pallorino Series by this author, I knew I wanted to read more from her. Sadly, because Angie Pallorino is now my favorite mystery series, my expectations were too high. I still got what I came to expect from this author: amazing writing, atmospheric setting, unique characters, but the story itself was disappointing. I couldn't get behind the stupidity of certain characters (view spoiler)[Gage, ex-cop, who set the lure. After that colossal mistake he didn't think to let anyone know that the killer is on the way?? (hide spoiler)] . Also, the heroine Olivia felt such shame at being a victim, I didn't like that, she didn't want to confide in anyone. And I understand, had those things I wanted happened sooner, the book would've been only 20 pages long, there would be no story. But I still think the conflict could've been done better. Everything was too simple. Still, by the end, I was a bit teary-eyed, because as I've said, the characters were done well, and the relationships between them. I cared. However, I wouldn't recommend this book. But - I am definitely reading more from Loreth Anne White. Maybe I'll have more luck next time? It started, as all dialogues do, when a path crosses that of another...

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