I'm not only a writer but I love to read a good romance novel. I struggled through reading some romances and they were okay, but I had this amazing book waiting for me that I had waited for for over a year. That had been left on a cliff hanger for over a year!
Seriously, I devoured this book. I couldn't stop thinking about it when I wasn't reading it and I couldn't put it down when I was. There were issues with the storytelling. First person present tense and then last it went into past tense. She included a secondary first person point of view that I don't think really needed to be there. But overall the story telling was gripping, which makes me want to dissect it and figure out what makes it tick. Unfortunately that isn't my strength. I know other writers who could probably tell me exactly what technique she used that had me so captivated. A lot of time it boils down to voice, but in this case it was voice and questions. The outcome was never clear in my mind. I never knew who to trust and who not to (because the main character didn't and it was told solely from her POV). There are cameos of characters I loved from her past romance books.
Besides the story beginning (five books ago) with the death of her sister, only bad people died. Good people sometimes did bad things, but they all survived in the end. I know I cared about the characters and wanted to see them come through it. At times I didn't like some of them, but I always cared about the POV character, even when she was being stupid. If there's a secret formula it's evading me.
Moral of the story write a damned good book. How to do that? *shrug*
Back to the grind stone for me... Try to write a damned good book!