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Trapped in his tiny mountain cabin, she didn’t expect to fall for his big heart.
Exposing a prominent criminal family with an investigative news report didn’t exactly work out the way Sabrina had hoped. Instead of basking in the glory of her article’s success, she’s on the run from a powerful man who wants her dead. To stay safe, she’s forced to trade one bad situation for another. Stuck in the Montana wilderness, she’s secluded from anything resembling civilization or the modern-day world. The only good thing about her situation is the gorgeous mountain man assigned to protect her. Too bad he isn’t the slightest bit interested in a city girl like her.
Beau likes his life quiet and simple. Give him a peaceful day hiking in the woods with his dog, and he’s a happy man. He has no use for large crowds, noisy cities or dramatic women. So when a hotshot reporter rolls into town, dragging her big-time problems with her, he should have run for the hills. Instead, he volunteered to keep her safe. Bringing her into his world won’t be easy, but if he can convince her that Montana isn’t as terrifying as she believes, they might just be the perfect match.
If it hadn’t been for the prologue drawing me into this story, I might have quit reading it. The first half of The Outpost seemed long, slow, and at time torturous. I didn’t connect with the characters and had to force myself to keep going because I was sure it would get better (and I wanted to know why she’d left ‘him’ if the months spent with him were so life-altering. I am glad I stuck it out, the last half of the book did redeem the first, although the rough start did affect my rating.
The Outpost is the Fourth in Devney Perry’s Jamison Valley series, although it can be read as a stand-alone. I haven’t read any of the books in the series, and I never felt lost in this book. There are a couple of characters I’d like to know more about, so I will likely pick up the previous books and read the series in its entirety, though. It is told in dual POV, Sabrina and Beau’s, but more of the book is told from Sabrina’s viewpoint than Beau’s
While I did feel empathetic toward Sabrina, I had a hard time connecting with her. It was definitely a ‘me’ thing, as I don’t think she was poorly written. It just seemed to me like a lot of who she was, in the beginning, was so superficial I think I wrote her off from that point forward. There were times she seemed too wrapped up in what her life used to look like to understand where her life was heading in the present. All in all, Sabrina was just a character I found difficult to relate to.
Beau was very much the opposite, and I desperately wish we would have had more scenes in his POV. He was such a quintessential ‘good guy’ and seemed to be a straight shooter; I think it would have been easier for me to connect with the book if I were in his head more often.
The Outpost did keep me on my toes for a good portion of the novel. There was a constant looming threat in the background and other moments of suspense thrown in to keep things interesting. Most of the on page happened in the final half of the book which helped me to enjoy the overall experience. I loved the glimpse of the other couples and tertiary characters; those scenes made me feel like I need to go back and read their stories too.
My wish for this book is just that the beginning of the book be more attention-grabbing. It started with a few big bangs and then fizzled for several chapters, that huge change in pace – while important for the character – was not great for the pacing of the novel. I also would have liked Sabrina to have been a more sympathetic character. While I did feel sympathy for her situation, I didn’t feel it for her as a whole.
Devney Perry is a new to me author. I’ve had several friends suggest her books since The Coppersmith Farmhouse was released, I just hadn’t taken the time to read them. After reading The Outpost, despite the slow beginning, I do see myself checking out her backlist. Her writing was good, and I enjoyed the journey she took me on. The fact she made me feel so much for secondary characters shows how good she is at drawing in her readers.
“Bryce,” the producer called from behind the row of cameras. “We’re all set.”
“Thanks.” She waved over the hair and makeup team. My blond hair got fluffed and placed while her skin was dusted and blushed. With both of our lips recolored, we settled in for the interview. The cameraman gave us his countdown and then Bryce did her introduction before turning to me.
“You’ve had quite the year, Sabrina. Just a little over one year ago, you wrote an article for The Seattle Times that shut down the biggest gun-smuggling operation on the upper West Coast. Then you disappeared for six months, only to reemerge as a best-selling romance novelist. You’ve just won a Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting and I’ve heard that there are talks of making your book into a blockbuster. How does it feel to have reached such success in your career?”
“Thank you. It’s been wonderful, albeit very busy.” I smiled and glanced at my lap to hide the flash of pain that crashed through my heart. Nothing about my successes gave me joy. Talking about my accomplishments just reminded me of how much I had lost.
“You’ve made some major achievements since you came back to Seattle,” Bryce said. “Most journalists, including this one, would kill to be in your position. How does it feel?”
I gave her my rehearsed answer. “It’s been incredible. Surreal, really. I’m still in shock at how much has happened over the last year.”
“I can imagine.” She flipped to a new note card. “Let’s talk more about the article.”
My cheerful face belied my true feelings. I was miserable on this television set. I was exhausted from talking about that damn article. I was done having people fuss over its success.
Everyone thought it was the article that had changed my life.
It had been the six months I’d spent in Montana.
It had been the six months I’d spent with him.
Devney lives in Montana with her husband and two children. After working in the technology industry for nearly a decade, she abandoned conference calls and project schedules to enjoy a slower pace at home with her kids. She loves reading and, after consuming hundreds of books, decided to share her own stories.