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Man With a Past by Jayne Ann Krentz
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Man With a Past

by Jayne Ann Krentz (Author)

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This has been my least favorite Krentz book. Krentz usually writes hero's with such character and excitement. Cole, however, is much more the villain than the hero in this book.

He starts out with scaring Kelsey, the heroine, nearly to death. She tries to end their casual month of seeing each other on weekends, and he reacts by smashing a glass of brandy in his hand (one of a couple of glasses he smashes in anger). He then chases Kelsey out into the rain when she runs to try to escape him. Freezing cold and scared, Kelsey walks slowly back to the house, where he jumps out from behind a tree, grabs her by the waist, covers her mouth with his hand and tells her she can't escape. He brings the terrified Kelsey inside and forces himself on her. She finally gives in (why I have no idea) and they sleep together. He then claims that she belongs to him.

He refuses to answer any questions about his past and expects Kelsey to trust him unconditionally (his behavior to me would indicate that he's very violent and possibly a serial killer, but Kelsey is expected to trust him unconditionally). She goes back home to avoid him and thinks her solo cruise she has planned will give her space to clear her mind.

Little does Kelsey know, that Cole follows her onto the cruise (can we say "stalker) and pays a cruise ship employee to give him her room information. When he doesn't see her there he pays another person to arrange her seat at dinner with him. When she doesn't show up to dinner, he bangs on her door, and barges in. (Um, hello, psychopath!). Kelsey is in her room sea-sick so he calls the doctor to give her a sedative which will knock her out. He insists on staying in the room and she is too weak to fight him. She wakes up once in the night and notices he is going through all of her papers and then steals said papers. When she asks him about it in the morning, he then taunts her to "turn him into the police" and is angry with her for not trusting him.

He goes on to yell at her about who she can spend time with, question why she is out of the house, require her to obey orders, threatens to take her over his knee and hit her when she doesn't, criticises what she wears, asks her to leave her job and move in with him (but he is "kind" and accepts eventually that she wants to keep her job to which Kelsey is very grateful- seriously?!?), intercepts her messages, reads her mail from her boss, yells at her, tells everyone she belongs to him, tells her she isn't allowed to leave and he will chase her down, oh and she says she loves him and they will live happily ever after...

There is a little side story going on, but don't want to add any spoilers, so just tlaking about the hero/heroine here.

Seriously?!?!?! I'm all for dangerous bad boys and mysterious men, but Cole is downright creepy! I can't understand at all why Kelsey agreed to all of his conditions when she should have been getting a restraining order and running for her life. I'm OK with females who are a bit submissive, but the extent to which Cole is creepy and she agrees with him is jut scary. This is more like a story for abusive relationships, than a romance. I'm very disappointed in this book.

Maybe the audio version made him sound even creepy than the paper book would have, but his behavior is unexusable and unacceptable in any realm. He's a very possessive controlling man with an anger problem. Kelsey should've kept on running! ( )
  Azacia | Dec 8, 2013 |
For Cole Stockton, the past is a closed book - for Kelsey Murdock, Cole's refusal to share is a complete deal-breaker. Can a man who insists on blind trust and a woman who hates secrets find a middle ground? They can if Cole has anything to say about it.

Spiced up with a Caribbean cruise, corporate intrigue, and a lesson or two in jungle survival, this is typical vintage Krentz. ( )
  SunnySD | Apr 29, 2012 |
Even compared to the standard of the rest of JAK's early work, this seems more like a primer on abusive relationships than a romance. Seriously. ( )
  thewalkinggirl | Jan 17, 2012 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Krentz, Jayne AnnAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Salamanca Garay, RocíoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This was the night she would have to tell him she was not going to see him again.
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Book description
She'd fought him every step of the way. and he'd won every battle... Cole Stockton had a will of steel and a raw determination to go after what he wanted - including Kelsey Murdock. he'd invaded her life, assaulting her with his sensuality, tempting her to be reckless. She sensed something dangerous about the man - in the secrets he refused to share, the past that still haunted him, the coiled tension that denied intimacy. For Cole, the past was a closed door. For Kelsey, that meant too many question and no answers - and the best reason to walk away, before it was too late. But when a simple business trip turns into a dangerous survival game, she is plunged into a world Cole knows all too well. Now Kelsey must trust he knows it well enough to keep them both alive.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0373251459, Mass Market Paperback)

Cole Stockton had a will of steel and a raw determination to go after what he wanted – including Kelsey Murdock. He’d invaded her life, assaulting her with his sensuality, tempting her to be reckless. She sensed something dangerous about the man – in the secrets he refused to share, the past that still haunted him, the coiled tension that denied intimacy. For Cole, the past was a closed door. For Kelsey, that meant too many questions and no answers – and the best reason to walk away, before it was too late. But when a simple business trip turns into a dangerous survival game, she is plunged into a world Cole knows all too well. Now Kelsey must trust he knows it well enough to keep them both alive. “Who writes the best romance fiction today? No doubt it’s Jayne Ann Krentz.” – Affaire De Coeur

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:48:32 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Cole Stockton had invaded Kelsey's life, assaulting her with his sensuality, tempting her to be reckless. She sensed that he had secrets he refused to share, and that was the best reason to walk away, before it was too late. But when a simple business trip turns into a dangerous survival game, she is plunged into a world Cole knows all too well. Now Kelsey must trust he knows it well enough to keep them both alive.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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