Book Reviews

Caught in the Current by Charlee James

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Caught in the Current introduces us to former Marine Jason and Private Ivestgator Alexandera as they try to find Jason’s kidnapped nephew.

Caught in the Current by Charlee James

Caught in the Current

Publication Date:  Sept. 24, 2018
Genre:  Romantic Suspense
Publisher:  Tule Publishing
Source: Publisher
Purchase: Amazon 
Length: 216 pages
Story Rating: 2/5

Retired Marine Jason Hall is a force to be reckoned with. When his nephew Luke is kidnapped by his fresh-out-of-jail father, he knows there’s one woman he can count on to help in the search. The last time he saw private investigator Alexandra Macintyre, they were steaming up the windows of her black SUV. Forgetting the scorch of her lips against his hasn’t been easy, but Jay knows the crippling pain of betrayal far too well.
Alexandra Macintyre is no stranger to tragedy. Haunted by her past, she seeks redemption by helping families find their loved ones, hoping their outcome is different from her family’s misfortune. Alex and Jay make a formidable team as they band together to rescue Luke, but the road trip south tests their emotional stamina. Alex is used to being alone, but Jay gives her a taste of the love and belonging she’s never dared to hope for.
Will Alex be able to make peace with her tragic past for a future with Jay?

Review:

Two sentences into the description I knew I would be reading this book. There was so much potential. Unfortunately, the description was the best part.

This wasn’t the book for me, it pushed a whole bunch of my buttons and I struggled to understand the rational behind some of the inclusions in the story. The story itself was good but I feel it was wrapped up and packaged poorly. Give me a second to try to explain.

Let’s start with the cover. It’s lovely, but not for this book. Throughout the book we’re told countless times about the jagged, menacing scar on the right side of Jason’s face. The scars which were the result of a military deployment are glamorized all over the pages. Although there was no mention of a beard in the pages, in an attempt to offer the benefit of a doubt, I Googled. Hair does no grow over scars. I’m not sure I can find the right words to express how I feel about this, but this whole situation rubs me the wrong way.

As a society, I think we throw around mental health diagnosis. A person will label themselves depressed when they’re feeling a bit down, call themselves bipolar when they have a mood swing or claim OCD because they spent a few minutes straightening out their room. It’s a problematic practice that trivializes and minimizes legitimate and potentially debilitating illnesses.

Every single character in this book was faced with one or more maladies that would generally require the intervention of a highly skilled professional.

Perhaps worse yet is that I read about characters named PTSD, Anxiety Disorder, Low Self Esteem, Survivors Guilt… The list goes on. The characters were quite one-dimensional and personified their designated personified versions of a trauma or mental illness perfectly. Their every word, thought, and action reinforced the fact that they needed professional help.

Several years ago, I came across a website More Than My Diagnosis. I thought it was an awesome way to looking at mental health issues. All too often, it seems a diagnosis does more harm than good. The diagnosis can quickly become a central part of a persons identify. While mental health counselling certainly isn’t my specialty, I’m confident an outlook such as that is detrimental to the healing process.

Overall, Caught in the Current wasn’t  my cup of tea. It’s unfortunate because it had the potential to be a 5 star read. The disrespectful way in which mental illness and physical injuries were handled had me shaking my head and gritting my teeth.

In fairness, I have to say at the end of the book is a very short sneak peek at the next book, and it sounds amazing! Although I don’t think I’ll be picking that book up, I am curious and looking forward to seeing the reviews.

If you like books that deal with PTSD you might enjoy Baking Lessons.

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