26236956The Obsession
by Nora Roberts
Release Date: April 12, 2016
Publisher: Berkley
Source: ARC from Netgalley
Rating: starstarstarstarstar (4.5)
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

The riveting new novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Liar.

Naomi Bowes lost her innocence the night she followed her father into the woods. In freeing the girl trapped in the root cellar, Naomi revealed the horrible extent of her father’s crimes and made him infamous.

Now a successful photographer living under the name Naomi Carson, she has found a place that calls to her, thousands of miles away from everything she’s ever known. Naomi wants to embrace the solitude, but the residents of Sunrise Cove keep forcing her to open up—especially the determined Xander Keaton.

Naomi can feel her defenses failing, and knows that the connection her new life offers is something she’s always secretly craved. But as she’s learned time and again, her past is never more than a nightmare away. – Goodreads

Review:

Although not well reviewed here, Nora Roberts is one of my authors. I have tried to read through her backlist, but there are, as you are probably aware..a few. Her newest, The Obsession might be my new favorite. It involves everything I love about Roberts’ books: a dog, a strong heroine, a handsome man, and a serial killer. I’m just kidding about the serial killers, her books do not always feature a serial killer.

What The Obsession did however was show a strong character who didn’t want to rely on anyone after a traumatic childhood.

“Then, in her Sabrina the Teenage Witch T-shirt, she pillowed her head on her hands and studied the shadows.”–1% eARC.

When Naomi was 12 years old she caught her father partake in a violent crime. She saved a girl’s life, but she also ruined her life in her own way. Her whole life changed. Her younger brother and her mother, and Naomi moved in with her uncle and she was always the girl with the notorious serial killer for a father.

16 years later, Naomi is still wondering, does she have that serial killer blood running through her veins? Is she destined to be a serial killer? Or alone, running away from her past? What we see is it’s mostly the later. Naomi has made a good solid life for herself as being a photographer. Her brother works for the FBI and her uncle and his husband are still thriving. Naomi literally has everything going for her but it’s also clear to the reader she is not overly happy. I don’t have much in common with Naomi, my father works for a college..and is not a serial killer but there were aspects of her that I understood. The photography. The keeping to herself. There were moments I wanted to hug her and be like “I understand. I get you.”

“Nine times out of ten I’d rather be alone than with anyone.” — 42% eARC

She’s also made herself part of this small town in Washington. She doesn’t mean to but she begins to mean something to that town. The contractor who works on her house and his wife become friends with Naomi, they also bring Xander into the fold and organically a friendship is formed. Nothing in The Obsession felt forced.

“I should tell you, then, I’ve decided we’re going to be really good friends, and I’m just relentless” –38%, eARC

Oh Xander, the mechanic who reads everything. Let me draw heart eyes on your photo and let’s have a moment together. Xander breaks down Naomi’s walls, but also breaks down his own walls. The two of them shouldn’t work, but they do and it was the perfect Roberts romance that I needed back in my life.

“He went home with her, and late into the night when whatever dream chased her made her whimper and stir, he did whatever he never did. He wrapped her close, and held her” –55%, eARC

I went into this just knowing that it was a Roberts book and I left with a new favorite.