Review: The Doubting Heart by Brenda Gayle

The Doubting Heart by Brenda Gayle
Series: Heart’s Desire (# 2)
Release Date: January 25, 2013
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Pages: 350
Source: book provided by the publisher for review



A woman determined to prove her friend was murdered questions her sanity when his look-alike appears.

When Shelby Holt convinces a friend to work at Wildhorse Pass tourist ranch, she never imagines he will die there. The police say Michael’s death was accidental, but Shelby doesn’t believe it. Haunted by guilt, she puts her academic career on hold to investigate.

Just back from the Middle East, Chad Graham is guilt-ridden over Michael’s death too. He poses as a ranch hand at Wildhorse Pass to investigate the woman claiming his cousin’s death is suspicious. Were the police wrong? Or is Shelby hiding something?

Shelby knows she can’t trust her heart, but when it comes to Chad, she can’t trust her head either. He looks uncannily like Michael. Yet even as their distrust deepens, sensual attraction simmers between them. The closer Shelby and Chad get to answers—and to each other—the closer they get to dangerand to a killer who will stop at nothing to avoid discovery.


Review: When I read the blurb for this title I thought to myself that this sounds  like  an exciting read. I am not conversant with this author’s writing style as such I was not  sure what she had in store for me. However the one thing I was expecting is that I would get a story that would keep me thoroughly entertained. It was entertaining to some extent, but it simply did not deliver that WOW factor that I have come to expect from the romantic suspense genre.

The story started out rather well and it had my attention at the start, still, there were portions of this story that I found quite boring as a consequence it took me some time to finish it. It did not grip me in the way I was expecting it and so it left me a quite disappointed. There were no unexpected surprises nor were there any twists and turns that one would expect from this type of genre. It was quite easy to figure out who the villain in the story was as such when it was revealed it came as no shock. In spite of this the story did have some merits, especially in the areas of character development and the theme.

The manner in which the characters were portrayed made it easy to understand what they were thinking and feeling. I found the female protagonist, Shelby Holt to be very insecure. She was of the mind that she was not beautiful and she found it difficult to believe that Chad, the male protagonist would be drawn to her. When it came to her belief that her best friend, Michael Graham was murdered she was very tenacious. She is willing to go to any lengths, even if it meant risking her life to prove that this was the case. It was this character that caught the Chad’s eyes. At first he was not sure what to think of her, but has he got to know her better he realized she is the woman for him.

Chad came to the Wildhorse Pass Ranch with the intent to look into what really happened to his cousin Michael. He also meant to ascertain what Shelby’s motive in all of this was. The one thing he was not expecting was to be attracted to her.

The author’s writing style was rather descriptive, especially as it relates to life on the ranch. It was rather engaging and it made feel as if I was actually there.

The Doubting Heart is a story of passion, betrayal, secrets and forgiveness. It portrays the devastating and the disabling effect that secrets can have on a relationship, but with love and forgiveness it can be healed. Although I did not get the experience I was expecting from reading this title I am still looking forward to reading more of this author’s work.