In brief: Sarah Burrows is a lowly assistant on a gossip magazine, but dreams of an investigative journalist career. So when a rock star flees the country, she pulls some strings to investigate his disappearance…
The good: Nick, the photographer, provides both laughs and eye candy.
The not-so-good: Took me a few chapters to settle into the roller coaster ride!
Why I chose it: Thanks to Pantera Press for the copy – they know I love my books about rock stars, journalism and travel!
Publisher: Pantera Press
Setting: Australia, Spain, Italy, France, the Netherlands…
Rating: 8 out of 10
Hot Pursuit is the debut novel from Rebecca Freeborn and behind the fun cover is a roller coaster ride across Europe that combines action, adventure, crime, thriller and romance all in one! It’s a novel that really sucks the reader in as the stakes get higher and higher for the main characters. If you’ve ever dreamed of chasing a rock star across Europe, fantasised about busting a crime ring or wanted to read about a hot photographer, I promise you will enjoy this book. It’s cheeky, fun and thrilling.
The main character of Hot Pursuit is Sarah Burrowes, who gave up beauty therapy to become a journalist. But that journalism degree only got her on to the lowliest rung of a gossip magazine. It’s kind of fortunate then that a night out to cheer herself up after her boyfriend dumped her lands Sarah in the bedroom of Chris Ford, almost-global superstar. But Chris receives a phone call that leads to him making a hasty departure. It’s only the next day that Sarah realises who he is – and that he may have murdered the band’s bass player. Sarah’s editor wants someone on Chris’s tail and through a few creative manoeuvres, Sarah lands the job. Unfortunately, it’s with her former one night stand and best friend of the ex, Nick the photographer. And so starts a journey across Europe to find the truth out about Chris that turns into something much more dangerous. Muggings, fires, secret clubs…it’s all there.
You might be thinking that Hot Pursuit sounds a bit dark and deep. I can assure you that it definitely isn’t! It’s a light hearted thriller that’s both comedic and fun (thrill-com?). I really think that Hot Pursuit would make a great movie as the plot is cracking once Sarah and Nick get on the plane and there are certainly many beautiful backdrops. The start of the novel was a little clunky for me as I established who Sarah was and her situation. (I must also admit to categorising Sarah initially as a bit of an air head – she’s definitely not). But once Nick got involved, the dialogue was witty and crackled with sexual tension and the plot really sped up. I also appreciated how so many beautiful landmarks across Europe were utilised and the use of Aussie slang amongst it made me smile. Rebecca Freeborn writes honestly and without superfluous descriptions or scenes. It’s all killer, no filler!
Sarah is a character who is real. Although she grows through the course of the novel, her journey is realistic as she experiences highs (guessing where Chris is by secretly interrogating his friends) and lows (the inability to keep her phone charged or documents locked). She’s flawed – indecisive when it comes to the ex or her feelings for Nick. That was part of the charm – not knowing if Sarah would succeed or end up with egg on her face temporarily! Of course Nick was there to help and redirect.
I enjoyed Sarah’s bumpy road to real journalist (and real happiness) in this novel. It really makes me eager to read what she writes next!