May 23, 2005

The Reef/ Nora Roberts

Not my typical read, but I wanted to know why it was so popular with women readers. This was the first Nora Roberts book I read and it's not bad.

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NLB Call No.: ROB (Adult Fiction section)

Main characters:
  • Tate Beaumont - the heroine who's in love with Matthew. She's got the looks, the brains, and is gutsy to boot.
  • Matthew Lassiter - the hero, a treasure-hunter who's got almost nothing to his name but his pride.
  • Buck Lassiter - Matthew's uncle, who after losing his leg to a shark, grew despondent and became an alcholic. But he recovered.
  • Silas VanDyke - Billionnaire, egomaniac. The bad guy who murdered Matthew's father and is obsessed with the "Angelique's Curse".
  • Marla Beaumont - Tate's mother. Great cook and seemed to be the perfect mother and wife. She came up with the idea to deal with the evil Silas VanDyke.
  • Raymond Beaumont - Tate's father. A millionaire in his own right. An amateur teasure-hunter who turned out to be great friends to the Lassiters.
The story & plot, in brief:
The "Angelique's Curse" is a richly jeweled amulet that went down with a Spanish ship. Legend has it that the woman who wore it was wrongly accused of murder and burned at the stake. And though it was found a few times throughout history, the owners always suffered mishaps.

The Lassiters are treasure hunters of ancient sea-wrecks. Matthew has a vendetta against VanDyke, whom he believed killed his father. The Lassiters meet the Beaumount and end up as partners. They find treasure. Matthew and Tate falls in love. Then bad luck struck -- a shark maimed Buck. VanDyke took the opportunity to steal all the Lassiter's and Beaumont's teasure. Matthew and Tate break up with misgivings.

A few years later, the Lassiters and Beaumonts get back together to find "Angelique's Curse". Matthew meets Tate again and they have yet to find closure and they get together, they break up, they make up... ah, it goes on. VanDyke is in the background, plotting to steal from them again. Matthew is adament about killing VanDyke.

Then Tate and Matthew finds and amulet. VanDyke kidnaps Tate and sends someone to kill Matthew. Tate escapes, Matthew survives. Marla comes up with a simple plan to entrap VanDyke. They succeed. VanDyke doesn't give up and confronts Tate, and he almost manages to steal the amulet...

The last part alludes to some mysterious happenings with the amulet, so I shan't give it away.

To quote a page from the last chapter: '...You've got murder, greed, lust, scarifice, passion, sex--'

The sex scenes, to me, seemed to have been thrown in for good measure because it was a Romance book. More like the garnishing to a dish (i.e. didn't matter if you didn't eat it anyway). The book has a credible plot and storyline, and has enough twists to sustain till the end.