Snagging a marriage proposal for her client while on an all-expenses-paid vacation should be a simple job for Ciel Halligan, aura adaptor extraordinaire. A kind of human chameleon, she’s able to take on her clients’ appearances and slip seamlessly into their lives, solving any sticky problems they don’t want to deal with themselves. No fuss, no muss. Big paycheck.
This particular assignment is pretty enjoyable… that is, until Ciel’s island resort bungalow is blown to smithereens and her client’s about-to-be-fiancé is snatched by modern-day Vikings. For some reason, Ciel begins to suspect that getting the ring is going to be a tad more difficult than originally anticipated.
Going from romance to rescue requires some serious gear-shifting, as well as a little backup. Her best friend, Billy, and Mark, the CIA agent she’s been crushing on for years—both skilled adaptors—step in to help, but their priority is, annoyingly, keeping her safe. Before long, Ciel is dedicating more energy to escaping their watchful eyes than she is to saving her client’s intended.
Suddenly, facing down a horde of Vikings feels like the least of her problems.
This delicious urban fantasy surprised me on several levels. I didn’t expect to like it as much as I did considering the main character had something of a harem going on but you know what? I just went with it and enjoyed the heck out of it. Ciel has this irrepressible voice, irreverent and charming – she is the quintessential younger sister with many older brothers who coddle her and protect her even when protecting is the last thing she wants. There is also a delicious friend of older brother who never seems to see her for the woman she is and a best friend who has recently blurred the lines of their relationship. Then there is the action – you are running, screaming, avoiding been shot, being drugged and then escaping – there are mad men wanting to increase the testosterone level of the general male population and a sexy CIA agent who may or may not be kissing (and other things) Ciel’s crush. And most irritating of all, there are all these men who keep on trying to “protect” Ciel.
The pace of the story is akin to riding a roller coaster and I’m not just saying that. This is not a serious affair where the survival of the world depends on these characters but more a light hearted foray into a family, somewhat like the mafia, who are able to change their appearance at will. It’s fun, it’s sexy and it packs a hell lot of a punch. I really liked this one. The whole plot and the overarching narrative is a bit out there but not enough that it is utterly unbelievable. The villains are, of course, appropriate villainous but more caricatures than actual serious villains and it works in this novel.
Where the romance is concerned, I, of course, see-sawed between Billy and Mark because though the latter seems more dependable, the former is more fun and rather more honest. Billy doesn’t play games but Mark, it seems, does. Billy also wins major points for letting Ciel be the person she wants to be without wanting to protect her every second. Who knows what the triangular relationship is going to look like next but if Grimes has taught me anything with In A Fix, it’s that I’m going to enjoy finding out. Strongly recommended for those who love wicked wit in their protagonists, delicious kisses and just sheer irrepressible fun.