Saturday, March 1, 2014

Book Review: With Good Behavior (Conduct #1) by Jennifer Lane

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With Good Behavior
Conduct #1
By:  Jennifer Lane
Published:  July 13, 2010
By:  Omnific Publishing
Source:  Author

GR's Summary:

In a world gripped by organized crime, family dysfunction, and dim hopes of redemption, can true love persevere? For Sophie Taylor, a beautiful psychologist who lost everything when she violated an ethical boundary, and Grant Madsen, a handsome naval officer who sacrificed everything to protect a loved one, finding that love may carry an unbearable cost.

Starting their lives over in Chicago, both are fighting influences from their family and running as fast as they can to escape the past. When their paths cross outside the parole officer's door, the attraction is instantaneous. But a hidden connection may not only shatter their fledgling love, but prove deadly to them both.

My Take on this Journey:

With Good Behavior, by Jennifer Lane, was an amazingly, fast-paced, thrilling novel.  It was filled with a great cast of characters and had a lot of character building sequences.  Unfortunately, 29 year old Sophie Taylor, a tall, thin, beauty with strawberry-blond hair, cannot escape the one huge mistake she has ever made in her life.  A mistake in judgement that has cost her her career as a Psychologist, her family, her reputation, and a sentence of 2 years in the Downer's Grove Women's Penitentiary in Illinois.  She only served a partial sentence for good behavior, but is now thrown back into the real world, with Parolee Officer, Jerry Stone, who is very intimidating, and has to report once a week for the next year, keep her nose clean, and find a job. Only problem is, how do you find a job when the question always arises, "Have you ever been arrested of a felony, and what was your crime?"

Grant Madsen, is 28 years old when he goes to prison.  He is dark complected, good-looking, a self assured, golden adonis, with crystal blue eyes that seem bottomless, the hands of an artist, and has just gotten out of a three year sentence early from, Gurnes State Penitentiary, in Illinois.  Grant was a former Navy man, who was dishonorably discharged for his felony, and he has a lot of secrets about his family, his former life, his psychological breakdown in solitary, and more, that will follow him everywhere he goes, mixed with a tremendous amount of guilt.  He just so happens to be at the office of the same Parolee Officer, waiting to be seen.  When out of nowhere, a long legged beauty walks out of said office and turns his head.  Both take that extra glance at one another, like two ships passing in the night.  There is a definite immediate attraction, and each wonders if they will see the other again.  For Sophie, his eyes penetrate her soul, but for the love of her, she doesn't know why.

Sophie's father, Will Taylor, blames her for her mother's death, due to her being put in prison.  She is going to live with her friend, Kirsten, her friend that is in the midst of writing her dissertation to become a therapist.  Grant's mother's brother, Uncle Joe Madsen, his only father figure, is the only one he considers family.  Now that he has let everyone down in his life, he feels he has no one and no where to go, so he stays at a shelter for the first night out of prison.  He definitely doesn't want anything to do with his father's side of the family, who are all a part of an organized crime family.  All of a sudden his Uncle Joe comes looking for him and he can breathe again.  Life won't be as bad as he thought. 

The characters were very engaging, and multi-faceted.  From the first sentence, Ms. Lane grabs her audience and throws them in to this roller coaster ride of intrigue, suspense, and tension that builds to a crescendo that leaves the reader on the edge of their seat. Grant is wound deep in to the background of the Mafia, but has been trying to break loose at every turn, throughout his life.  They just won't let him go.  They will do anything to draw him in, including using the woman he loves.  These two characters have an insta-love relationship, built on lust and attraction.  There is a definite affinity to secrets, which each leaves the other dangling out of the loop.  Ms. Lane draws the reader in to a web, where each character is connected to the other, without their knowledge. The angst and intrigue leaves you reeling, wondering what is going to happen next, when they find out about each other, and their unknown connection to one another.

As an avid reader of suspense, drama, intrigue, mystery, and romance, I found this novel superbly written.  The characters are dimensional, there is definite character growth, and the novel had a definite beginning, middle, and end.  Ms. Lane has written a great romantic novel with exceptional leading characters that will fill your heart and leave you so engrossed in their journey, you won't want to break the spell that captivates you, as you hold out hope for these two characters that didn't deserve what life threw their way. The secondary characters were all wonderfully written, relatable, sexy, and realistic. Get your hankys ready, this story has an unforgetably, sad history that will make your heart break for Grant and Sophie.  I loved this novel and look forward to the sequel.

I give Good Behavior, by Jennifer Lane, 5 Intriguing, Suspenseful, Endearing, Sweet, Love Filled, Second Chance Stars!!!     

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About the Author:

People fascinate the psychologist/author (psycho author) known as Jennifer Lane. Her therapy clients talk to her all day long about their dreams and secrets, and her characters tell her their stories at night. Jen delights in peeling away the layers to scrutinize their psyches and emotions. But please rest assured, dear reader, she isn’t psychoanalyzing you right now. She’s already got too many voices in her head!

Stories of redemption interest Jen the most, especially the healing power of love. She is the author of The Conduct Series—-romantic suspense for adult readers—-and recently completed the third and final installment:On Best BehaviorStreamline is her first foray into writing for young and new adults, but she’s found this sort of writing even more fun. A former college swimmer, Jen was able to put a lot of her own experiences into this book. 

Whether writing or reading, Jen loves stories that make her laugh and cry. In her spare time she enjoys exercising, attending book club, and hanging out with her sisters and their families in Chicago and Hilton Head.


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  1. I've seen this book around a lot, and wondered if it's one I would enjoy. I loved Lane's novel Streamline, so I know what a great writer she is. I'm so glad you enjoyed With Good Behavior, Ro. Great review!

  2. Thank you Andrea. I haven't read any other books yet, but I plan to now. I will start with Streamline, since you liked it. Your picks are always worth reading. Thanks for stopping by friend. It's always appreciated.

  3. This book seems intriguing and different from others that I have read before and I really like that. I am always on the search for a book that stands out of the crowd from others. Thank you for writing it and I cannot wait to read it.


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