Criminal Instinct by Kelly Lynn Parra
Thanks again to the kind folks at Carina Press for giving me a copy of Kelly Lynn Parra‘s Criminal Instinct. This is the first non-paranormal / urban fantasy title that I’ve read from their imprint and so I was eager to see if I would enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed their paranormal / urban fantasy books.
The basic premise of Criminal Instinct is that Ana Moreno was given a choice – five years in prison or five years working as an undercover agent as part of a secret task force, along side other criminals. This team (SIDE – Secret Information Drug Enforcement) is trying to stop a shipment of Ecstasy and so Ana is forced to get close to Jonas Saven, a valued employee of a drug dealer thought to be importing the drugs. This, of course, leads to instant attraction and steamy love scenes, as well as conflict between the two leads as they have very different goals.
I’m sad to say that Criminal Instinct isn’t nearly as satisfying as the other titles I’ve read from Carina Press. The plot is fairly predictable but I still enjoyed reading the story. The cast of characters is quite nice – Ana is tough but vulnerable, Jonas is suitably mysterious, and many of the supporting characters, particularly the other members of SIDE, are interesting. I think some of the other characters could have been fleshed out a bit more but their lack of development didn’t really detract from the story. This was the first story that Kelly Lynn Parra wrote and I think she’s got the makings of an interesting writer but this novel didn’t quite get there for me.