SYNOPSIS: Photographer Jo Ellen Hathaway thought she’d escaped the house called Sanctuary long ago. She’d spent her lonliest years there, after the sudden, unexplained disappearance of her mother. Yet the sprawling resort off the Georgia coast continues to haunt her dreams. And now, even more haunting are the pictures someone is sending to her: strange close-ups and candids, culminating in the most shocking portrait of all–a photo of her mother…naked, beautiful, and dead. Now Jo must return to the island, and to her bitterly estranged family–and, with the help of one man, learn the truth about her tragic past. But Sanctuary may also be the most dangerous place of all… – via Goodreads
Okay, I am not a fan of romance fiction, though every now and then I try, especially if there is a mysterious element to it, a murder mystery, something. And it isn’t too heavy on the romance side. I try Roberts’s work once in a while because I know that it is light, fluffy, quick to read, and doesn’t need you to actually invest in it. I regret now not having asked Natasha about this one first, or for a recommendation, as I always do. I am sure she could have steered me in a much better direction. Let me preface where this is going with WOW! There is so much sex going on in this book! Like, so much. Natasha warned me that there was a lot of it going on (after I told her what I was reading), but seriously? Nookie up the wazoo! This is not something I appreciate a hell of a lot in a book. I have referred to one of her novels as a forest fuck fest before, but this one? Island Orgy! There are so many damn characters, and all of them have some form of a partner, and all of them are avoiding that partner and not wanting that partner and not interested in that partner then they are all worn down by that partner and then incessantly jumping that partner’s bones. I am serious. It was relentless, and it never ended. Plus I was not impressed with three main relationships going down. That means learning about each one of the characters (who were all so shallow and happened to be gorgeous, apparently) and then how they fit together, and then how they enjoy sex. It is unbelievable that all three siblings just so happen to find love at exactly the same time. There was an inkling of what could have actually been a pretty good story in here, but it was overshadowed by a bland story, and all the potential was pissed away when it was ultimately so flat and generic at the end. No guts, no glory. The climax was one of the most disappointing things in the world. Sanctuary also just asks you to suspend reality way too much. The characters are unlikable, and you don’t actually root for anyone. I was also not pleased with how intimately Roberts discussed the rapist and murderer at times. It was creepy – describing his attractive face, the lines, as well as how he felt while raping these women? How he climaxed and all? Way too detailed and intimate man, eeeeeew. Anyway, this is not a Roberts book that I can recommend. It races by quickly, and sadly has more potential than it eventually goes for, and could definitely have been shortened by a third at least to cut out sex and flesh out a story. Don’t waste your time, seriously.