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Undertow by Cherry Adair ~ Book Review

Undertow by Cherry Adair ~ Book ReviewAuthor: Cherry Adair
Title: Undertow
Series: Cutter Cay #1
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 337
Release Date: December 28, 2010
Genres: Romantic Suspense

Teal Williams is content with her career as a ship’s master mechanic—until Zane Cutter, the “Casanova of the Caribbean,” makes her an offer she can’t refuse: to climb on board with him for a real-life treasure hunt. Teal must help him dredge up a shipwrecked vessel containing an abundance of gold, silver, and emeralds—and she’ll claim part of the prize.


Zane needs a mechanic—not a lover—and Teal, who can also dive, is perfect for the job.  So it suits him just fine that Teal is completely immune to his charms…or so he tells himself.  But with a deadly enemy in their midst—one who’s silently edging closer—Zane and Teal sink into troubled waters. Trapped in the middle of a perilous sea, they have no one to turn to but each other as they face down a danger that runs unfathomably deep—and a passion that runs even deeper…
Format: Paperback
Also by this author: Stormchaser
AmazonAdd to Goodreads

Undertow is the first book in the Cutter Cay series by Cherry Adair. This is the second time I have read this romantic suspense novel, which is available to read in both paperback and e-book.

This is what I said on Goodreads about it the last time: “The characters are interesting and there’s enough action to satisfy someone who really isn’t a reader of romance novels.”

While that’s true, I wanted to do a more in-depth review for the blog before I move on to reading the next book in the series.

Undertow has a lot going on. Zane Cutter is finally realizing his dream of salvaging a Dutch frigate he has spent the last four years looking for. His ship mechanic is sick with cancer, so his daughter Teal steps in. At first Zane thinks Teal is perfect for the job because he thinks he won’t be distracted by her since she’s not much to look at. He finds out quickly that he was wrong. So, not only does he have to deal with her, he has to deal with the many other things that get in the way of him realizing his dream, such as his ship being sabotaged, someone stealing treasure from them, Teal getting kidnapped, hungry sharks, a huge storm that reduces underwater visibility, and a plane crashing that is carrying a self-detonating microchip.

If you look at it from Teal’s perspective, there is also the issues of her dying and emotionally distant father, her verbally abusive ex-husband, her unrequited love for Zane, and her social awkwardness.

There were a lot of things I liked about Undertow. Here are some of them:

1. Fast-paced

2. Well-researched, especially about diving and ship engines

3. Good at casting suspicion on multiple people

4. Teal and Zane have history, so no possibility of insta-love

5. They wait until more than the middle of the book before having sex

6. I like that Teal was able to rescue herself the second time she got kidnapped

I have a few complaints:

1. Sometimes it hops from Zane’s head to Teal’s head (point of view problems)

2. The secret government installation and Special Ops stuff doesn’t fit with the rest of the story; it comes unexpectedly

3. If Teal is so stubborn and argumentative, why did she allow herself to be abused for three years?

4. Teal bitches a lot about Zane’s womanizing. She finally tells him that they slept together the night of his father’s funeral, but she doesn’t ever tell him the most hurtful part, which was how he treated her the next morning. Don’t you think this is something you should get off your chest before getting into a serious relationship a person who hurt you in the past?

Overall, the things I didn’t like aren’t enough to change my overall opinion of the book. I enjoyed reading Undertow a second time. I definitely plan to continue the series. I recommend it to people who like stories where the lovers must first overcome their misconceptions about the other person. Also, I recommend it to readers who like stories about recovering treasure from sunken ships, complicated by danger in many forms.


About Cherry Adair

Cherry Adair has garnered numerous awards for her innovative action-adventure novels, which include White Heat, Hot Ice, On Thin Ice, Out of Sight, In Too Deep, Hide and Seek, and Kiss and Tell, as well as her thrilling Cutter Cay series for St. Martin’s Press. A favorite of reviewers and fans alike, she lives in the Pacific Northwest.


Jen Schaper
I am a mom of three kids, a wife, and a wannabe author. For Books That Hook, I review books, create features and discussions, design the website, and do all the administrative stuff.

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