Comment: This is the last story in the Dock Five universe, created by Linnea Sinclair. I've had this book to read for some months and decided to read it before buying more books by the author.
This is the story of David, he's the youngest brother of Phillip, the hero from the previous installment.
David is the youngest son but his life is about to be as well used for the family name as everyone else's has been. However, David's oldest nephew is seen leaving his room and his bodyguard is found dead after. The mystery about who did it and why amounts to an adventure for David, the butler, the nephew and the woman David never forgot despite knowing she was forbidden, for she was married. But now it's a run against time to understand who wants to hurt the Guthrie family and why.
Overall, I can't say this was a bad book, because it filled all the expected spaces in terms of romance, storytelling, writing style, goals and HEA. I just found this book to be less exciting than the others and the romance, despite there and despite the HEA, wasn't as powerfully exploited or heartfelt for me.
My biggest issue was the development and conclusion of the romance. Although I enjoyed the angst and the dilemmas David faced over his feelings for Kaidee, someone who worked for his family and who was married, I still wasn't totally convinced over the end of the story for them. The beginning of their meeting again, situation and finances apart, was very promising because we had two characters with different experiences in life and I wanted to see them finding common ground. David has had a crush on Kaidee since she was an employee and his honor stopped from saying anything, both due to professional and personal reasons. Of course i expected him to want to be with her and close to her in the adventure thy saw themselves in.
Kaidee, however, apparently didn't feel the same in those past years, although we know she respected and admired him, as a person. Throughout the novel, we see their feelings change and grow but honestly I wasn't convinced Kaidee was actually falling in love, it always seemed that things were almost like retribution from her. I know she says differently in the book, but it was the feeling I always had.
This sort of shaped my idea of them as a couple so I never bought their love relationship too deeply. Then the HEA comes in the end of the book and once again, it felt flat. I wish the author had taken he time to build up something bigger about their lives, even more so if this was the final book. Hints and possibilities didn't seem enough.
There are good parts too, mainly plot related, but I do confess the resolution felt a bit rushed and with too much drama...authors do like to take their worlds to the edge.
The best thing, as always, is the world building, the imagination and creativity we can see in every page, because we can picture the world and how things must be to work the way she describes here.
I think the writing style, plot details and world building seem as effortlessly done as anything despite the reality surely be the opposite.
This conclusion to the series was a good enough effort, but I couldn't help thinking it could have been so much better. There are many plot related issues, Kaidee's experiences, David's mind and thought processes, the mystery, the situations which show up the character's potential, many things to bring this to life. But, for me, what should have been the best, wasn't. Fr that I feel this wasn't as wonderful as it could be, despite the good and fascinating writing.