2 stars and a half

Category Romance Review: Beware of the Stranger by Janet Dailey

Beware of the Stranger, Janet Dailey, Harlequin, 1978, cover artist TBD
Harlequin Presents #256
2 1/2 stars

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Beware of the Stranger by Janet Dailey was a real meh book. The best part of it was the 1970’s kitsch; the hero is introduced wearing a forest green blazer and plaid pants. The heroine’s wardrobe is full of plaid blouses and light-blue bell bottoms. Plenty of smoking, tossing those cigarettes down, and then engaging passionate make-out sessions.

As for the plot…

Well our plaid wearing hero shows up at the heroine’s newspaper job, claiming to work for her wealthy father who needs to see her immediately. He takes Samantha hundreds of miles away to a secluded island in the St. Lawrence River, never lets her off the island, and never lets her use the phone.

Samantha is a wily journalist with sharply-honed instincts, so it only takes her 100 pages of this 190+ page book to realize that she’s been kidnapped!

The hero’s a shady guy hiding the truth from her as his name changes every 42 pages or so. First he’s Owen, then he says he’s Chris, then he reveals he’s Jonas, then… It was like a Scooby-Doo mystery with a face reveal under the first face reveal loop that never ended.

Oh, and this was Janet Dailey’s Harlequin Presents dedicated to the State of New York? As a lifetime New Yorker I’m offended this one was so boring.

I’ve read quite a few Janet Dailey books, including Show Me, and I recall that she said that she finished her manuscripts in only 4-6 weeks, but many times would write a book over a weekend.

It shows.

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