3 out of 4 stars
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After reading several books that had more serious content and required deep thinking, I was ready to read a light and easy-reading book. Thankfully, Cynthia and Dan: Cyber War by Dorothy May Mercer fit that description. It is a light romantic-suspense which, sadly, came to an end too fast. This book is a part of “The McBride Series” where the protagonist, Cynthia Patterson, is introduced in previous stories. Even though I hadn’t read the previous books, I found that Cynthia and Dan: Cyber War can be read as a standalone.
Cynthia Patterson works for Senator Mike McBride in Washington, D. C. as a part-time receptionist. Her part-time job is a cover for her real job: “chief of security, investigator and body guard.” While working, she notices terrorists on social media sites trying to connect with and convert impressionable people to their cause. Cynthia decides to start a high-tech war against the terrorists. To accomplish this task, she asks her brother, Glenn, for help. She also hires two young computer experts who work under her brother’s supervision. After meeting with her brother during the lunch hour, Cynthia rushes back to work, but traffic is stopped going into D. C. because of a drone appearing on the White House lawn. Mysteriously, Sky Eastman rescues her from the gridlock and offers her a late lunch. She accepts. Even though Cynthia has a current boyfriend, Dan MacIntyre, she is attracted to this mysterious stranger. Will Sky capture her heart, or will it be Dan? Will she win the high-tech war against the terrorists? Will she discover who is behind the drone incident?
This book was written in the third-person, and a joy to read. Mercer did an excellent job building the characters’ strengths and weaknesses, and of providing enough detail to know what they liked and what they were capable of doing. For example, Cynthia decided that Sky might be dangerous and that she had to cut off all communication from him even though she didn’t want to. She convinced herself to do this by thinking, “Well Cynthia, get going. Mother told you there’d be days like this.” (Page 108) There was a good balance between dialogue, action, and description that helped move the plot along effortlessly. Mercer addresses some serious issues like terrorism, contraceptives, and abortion. I thought she did a superb job of maintaining suspense with these topics without any descriptive violence or gruesome details. Until the end, I was continuously wondering what would happen next.
For everything that I liked about this book, I only had one minor disappointment: the ending felt rushed. I would have liked a little more interaction between Cynthia and the man who won her heart. As a reader, I felt they needed to have a closing discussion and it was just dropped with a happily ever after.
I didn’t find any grammar errors in the Kindle edition; however, I found errors such as missing quotation marks, extra words, missing words, and one misused word. I wish I could give Cynthia and Dan: Cyber War four stars in spite of my minor disappointment with the ending, but there were a few too many errors. With another round of editing, they could have been easily corrected. I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars because of the great character development, an engaging plot structure, and a perfect level of suspense. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to read something that is light and quick. There is a scene near the beginning which is sexually explicit, so I wouldn’t recommend this for younger readers.
Cynthia and Dan
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