Some reporters have all the luck--especially plucky, ambitious, determined Texas TV news reporter Tiel McCoy, who walks into a convenience store on her long-postponed vacation and finds herself smack in the middle of the biggest story of her life. A couple of scared kids--an all-American boy and his very pregnant girlfriend, on the lam from her powerful, wealthy father who's determined to keep them apart--hold Tiel and a handful of other customers hostage. While Ronnie's brandishing the gun, Sabra goes into labor, and a mysterious, handsome stranger known as "Doc" takes over what soon turns into a life-threatening delivery. Only Tiel knows who Doc is: a brilliant, innovative physician who disappeared after a scandal involving the death of his wife. And only Tiel knows the identity of the gun-wielding boy and his girl, who are at the center of a manhunt the size of Texas. But there are some secrets she doesn't know, including the murderous reputation of two men trapped in the store with the rest of the hostages. As the drama unfolds, it becomes apparent that the kids would rather die than surrender, and the police, the FBI, and Sabra's father will precipitate a volatile end to the standoff.
Brown is a skillful writer, able to sustain suspense while fleshing out her characters. She saves the obligatory sex scene for the very end, but makes it worth waiting for. Tiel McCoy is an engaging heroine, and Brown fans will look forward to her return in another adventure after she wins the coveted promotion this dramatic exclusive will no doubt earn her.
completely unbelievable Although Sandra Brown's book are occasionally a little saccharine for me, generally, they are enjoyable reads with fun plot twists. This one, however, was totally unbelievable with plot twists that were so unlikely as to make the book impossible to enjoy.
First off, I wish they had asked someone with some medical knowledge to review this book before publication. The birth scene was truly the most unrealistic birth scene I have ever read. A 17-year-old who is in an absolutely terrifying situation for her first birth manages to go through an entire labor with nothing more than an occasional grimace, and she pretty much pushes the baby out without anyone noticing it's happening. An oncologist who hasn't touched a pregnant woman in over a decade manages to tell immediately from an exam that the baby is breech. The baby turns after the water is broken while the woman is in labor. (And as an aside, what is Sandra Brown's obsession with episiotomies? Just in case anyone out there gets their medical knowledge from her novels, there is no proof that episiotomies prevent bad tears, and most studies have shown that they are more likely to cause them.)
I was annoyed enough at how poorly the birth scene was written, I should have just stopped, but Brown's writing style is engaging enough that I wanted to find out how the book ended. Unfortunately, it got no better from there. We are supposed to believe that a group of people are unable to distract and overpower a scared 17-year-old boy whose girlfriend is in labor, but are able to do so to an experienced FBI agent. We are also supposed to believe that law enforcement would be willing to bargain with this same boy who has held 7 people at gunpoint for several hours, just because his girlfriend's father is a jerk. Also, we are supposed to believe that this boy chose to hold up a store in the middle of nowhere that happened to contain a TV reporter, a famous doctor who's been discredited and a Top 10 Most Wanted criminal.
Sandra Brown has done much better than this. Pass this one by.Best to pass this one by I listened to this book on audio tape while in the car - a new experience for me. Maybe it's because I prefer reading or maybe the narrator's voice became irritating, but this was not very entertaining. Sandra Brown is one of my favorite romantic-suspense authors and I have enjoyed many of her past works. Standoff is a light-weight story. Although the characters were together for many hours as hostages in a convenience store, I didn't feel like I knew them very well. The two teens who robbed the store and caused the problems definitely had some psychological issues, but I found myself not caring too much about them and waiting for the story to resolve. It does and ho-hum. Maybe it is more enjoyable in print, but judging from some of the other reviews, probably not. If you want to read a good Sandra Brown, try Witness or French Silk.Very bad end The story of the book is excellent, although it has too many coincidences at the beginning of it, nevertheless, the abduction and all the problems with the hostages will keep you in the book and you will not be able to close it... until the abduction ends. The last 30 pages could be written in 5 pages or less and that end just took away a star, you can end the book when the abduction ends and read the las two pages and you will have an excellent book.