In the third novel in nationally bestselling author K.A. Tucker’s romantic suspense series, a young woman travels to Dublin and finds herself at the scene of a crime—and falling for the guy who saves her.
Armed with two years’ worth of savings and the need to experience life outside the bubble of her Oregon small town, twenty-five-year old Amber Welles is prepared for anything. Except dying in Dublin. Had it not been for the bravery of a stranger, she might have. But he takes off before she has the chance to offer her gratitude.
Twenty-four-year-old River Delaney is rattled. No one was supposed to get hurt. But then that American tourist showed up. He couldn’t let her die, but he also can’t be identified at the scene—so, he fled. Back to his everyday life of running his family’s pub. Only, everyday life is getting more and more complicated, thanks to his brother, Aengus, and his criminal associations. When the American girl tracks River down, he quickly realizes how much he likes her, how wrong she is for him. And how dangerous it is to have her around. Pushing her away would be the smart move.
Maybe it’s because he saved her life, or maybe it’s because he’s completely different from everything she’s left behind, but Amber finds herself chasing after River Delaney. Amber isn’t the kind of girl to chase after anyone.
And River isn’t the kind of guy she’d want to catch.
About the Author
K.A. Tucker writes captivating stories with an edge. She is the bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths and Burying Water series and the novels He Will Be My Ruin, Until It Fades, Keep Her Safe, and The Simple Wild. She currently resides in a quaint town outside Toronto with her husband and two beautiful girls.
Read an Excerpt
I weave around men and women alike with barely a pardon, struggling not to lose Aengus, nor to let on that I’m tailing him. The slick guy has done his part to make that tricky, his flinty gaze darting side-to-side as he briskly navigates the morning swell of pedestrians. Dressed in tan trousers and a plain white collared shirt, the beige tweed driver’s cap tipped low to help hide his face, he could pass for an office clerk or a salesman. Maybe a manager at one of the upscale Grafton Street stores. Someone responsible. Someone respectable.
Someone that he’s not.
It’s not even so much him that is making me suspicious. It’s that black leather satchel. The one he holds close to his body as if to protect it from being stolen or knocked by a passerby rushing to catch a bus or a streetlight.
It’s the sweat seeping through the back of his shirt, when the air this early June morning is crisp.
It’s the way he’s checked his watch three times in the span of twenty meters.
My gut churns with explanations, all of them bad.
Nothing good has come from Aengus since Portlaoise Prison spat him out four months ago. Six years inside Dublin’s maximum security walls have only fortified his connections, poisoned his convictions. Blackened his soul. They took in an ideological twenty-two-year-old Irish Republican and spat out an inspired criminal.
And here I am, thirty steps back, tracking him through the gates of St. Stephen’s Green just moments after security opened passage for the day, as if it were all perfectly timed.
Because, after all, he is still my brother.
I glance at my own watch. It’s seven thirty a.m. While they tend to open the Green earlier during summer months, this seems too early. And Aengus’s single nod toward the guard seems unusually familiar.
I haven’t been inside Dublin’s prime inner-city park in years. It hasn’t changed much. It’s still a vast expanse of winding paths and gardens—an escape nestled within a bustling city. Right now it’s serene, still waking after a night alone, free of visitors, the air misted, the pale yellow sun not yet high enough to warm the grounds. This quiet won’t last long, though.
Aengus glances over his shoulder and I dart behind the nearest bush. If he senses a shadow, he doesn’t let on, veering right at a fork ahead and disappearing around the bend. I follow cautiously, until he turns off the path and begins trudging through the open field. In a few hours, this place will be crawling with office workers and other Dubliners, lounging in the sun or reading beneath a canopy of leaves. Anything to escape their dreary day jobs and enjoy the fresh air.
Aengus checks his watch yet again as he marches briskly and purposefully toward an oak that’s cordoned off by a stream of blue-and-white tape, as if there’s a threat of the tree collapsing. Only, I notice that the perimeter reaches far past its widest branches, taking over half of the green space. Making me think that the tape has nothing to do with a hazardous tree at all.
“What the hell are you about, Aengus . . .” I mutter, touching my jaw where his knuckles landed last night, after he threw open his bedroom door and caught me eavesdropping on his phone call. I heard only bits and pieces of it—I couldn’t form even a murky guess as to the gist—but it was enough to make him throw a punch first and ask questions later.
When I shoved him into the wall—because violence is how we seem to communicate best—and reminded him that he just got out of prison, the only explanation he volunteered was that a warning needs to be delivered, no one will get hurt, and I need to keep my fucking mouth shut.
Another time check. Aengus crouches down and unzips the satchel.
I’m too engrossed in what he’s doing now to be on guard, so when his head suddenly snaps up, I can’t move fast enough. Hard eyes lock on me in an instant, freezing me where I stand.
It’s a showdown.
I shake my head, willing him to hear my thoughts. Walk away, big brother. Don’t do whatever it is you’re about to do.
His hand stalls inside the bag. For just a moment, I believe that he’s heard me. That he’s finally listening. That my presence here has derailed him from shortening that length of rope he seems so eager to slip around his own neck.
Foolish of me, really. Aengus has never been malleable to reason.
I inhale sharply, the air hissing through my gritted teeth. I watch him lay the long cylindrical tube down in the grass with careful movements and dread washes over me.
Jesus, Aengus. You’ve gone too far this time.
Hopping to his feet, he snatches up the satchel and charges toward me, his cell phone in his palm, his head revolving as he scans the emptiness around us. I square my shoulders and brace myself for a collision with his temper, as swift and nasty as a black adder’s bite.
“Are you insane?” I bark when he’s within easy earshot.
The glint in his eyes—the color of an overripe avocado, beginning to rot—would suggest exactly that.
“You said no one would get hurt.”
“Do you see anyone around to get hurt?” he snarls, continuing past me, punching keys into his phone. “You’ve got exactly sixty seconds to get the fuck out of here, River.” He takes off at a light jog, not waiting to see if I’ll follow.
Because I always have.
Oh, fuck me. A current of adrenaline shoots through my core. I glance down at my watch. One minute. Less, now. Fifty-five seconds, give or take. The muscles in my thighs twitch, ready to tear after Aengus because there’s nothing else for me to do. But a lot can happen in just sixty seconds. My conscience keeps me grounded, my wild eyes scouring the paths around me for signs of life. A jogger bobs along in the distance, so far away that I can’t be sure whether it’s male or female. Otherwise, I see no one.
I glance at my watch again, my heartbeat doing double time with each second that passes. Only forty-five remain before I look damn guilty to whoever finds me here. Unless I rat out Aengus—which will never happen—I’m as good as locked up for this.
I need to run.
Except . . . that perimeter set isn’t wide enough. If someone should come around the bend, cut across the field . . . But what can I do, really?
Thirty seconds. Beads of sweat trickle down my back. I need to get the hell out of here. Now.
I turn, intent on going back the way I came. But movement catches my eye and my stomach drops as I watch the very thing I just feared unravel before my eyes. A girl runs through the field, her attention alternating between her wrist and the unfolded map within her grip, her brow pulled tight with worry.
She’s clearly a tourist.
She’s clearly late for something.
And she’s heading directly into the blast radius of the pipe bomb that’s about to explode.
I’m out of time. I don’t have a choice.
I run. As fast as my legs can carry me, I run.
The Fusiliers’ Arch is this way . . . I think.
I’ve always seen myself as someone with a keen sense of direction. But then I embarked on this grand adventure to find myself and, well—I’ve found myself, alright. Twisted and upside down and heading blocks in the wrong direction enough times to accept that I actually suck at reading maps. If not for the tiny charm on my bracelet that doubles as a handy compass—a gift from the sheriff, ever worried for his twenty-five-year-old daughter’s safety—I wouldn’t know which way was north half the time.
I doubt that even the compass can help me now. The tour company brochure states a seven thirty-five sharp departure and it’s now . . . I glance at my watch and my anxiety spikes. Seven thirty-three. Stupid me for booking a day trip the morning after I arrive in Ireland. Just twenty-four hours ago I was plane-hopping from Charlottetown to Toronto to Amsterdam to Dublin, going back in time one hour before jumping ahead five. Instead of sleeping, I spent the overnight flight feeding my addiction to Mad Men. By the time I stepped off the plane at three in the afternoon, I was exhausted.
Of course I figured that two years of flip-flopping between night and day shifts at the hospital would make adjusting to the time change easy for me.
Of course my alarm rang for exactly thirty-two minutes this morning before my brain actually registered the sound.
And now I’m going to miss the freaking tour.
Cutting through this park is supposed to save me a few minutes of travel time. That was one of the few pieces of wisdom my taxi driver from the airport imparted to me yesterday. But he didn’t tell me which paved path, of the countless ones that snake among gardens and forested areas, to take. So in complete desperation, I choose an unconventional diagonal route, rushing past an English garden ripe with colorful summer blooms to run across a grassy field. The morning air is crisp, leaving my legs—bare, thanks to the jean shorts I threw on in my rush, not thinking—touched by gooseflesh, even as sweat trickles down my back. It’ll be okay later, I remind myself. They’re calling for a high of 74 degrees Fahrenheit today. Well, technically, 23 degrees Celsius. Even after traveling across Canada for three and a half weeks, I still can’t seem to grasp the metric system.
Seven thirty-four. “Crap!” I scan the city map held out in my hands as I run. So distracted that I don’t notice a section of the field ahead taped off until I’m almost tearing through it. There are no construction signs or pieces of equipment lying around. Probably just freshly planted grass seed or something. Whatever the reason, it’s smack dab in the middle of my path and I’ll lose time trying to avoid it. Time I don’t have. Beyond the field, another path winds its way to a fountain and benches and more paths. A round glass dome peeks out over the tree line farther ahead. That’s the shopping center I’ve read about. And to the right of that is where my bus will be waiting.
Or not, if I don’t hurry up.
I jump over the tape with a grimace and a silent apology. I check my watch again. Maybe it’s a few minutes fast. Maybe the tour bus driver isn’t really a stickler for a prompt departure. Maybe—
He comes out of nowhere, from the left.
My only warning is the sound of his feet pounding against the grass. I turn my head just as he plows into my side, sending me sailing through the air. Pain explodes in a dozen different body parts as I hit the hard ground, my lungs grappling for oxygen.
He’s on top of me in an instant, crushing me under his weight, his thick arms roping around either side of my head, smothering me. I can’t breathe, or scream, let alone fight him off right now.
I manage just one fleeting thought—that this man, with his forehead pressed against mine and his ragged breaths assaulting my face—is about to rape me in broad daylight in a city park.
And then I’m plunged into a strange void that devours all my pain and fear.
A wave of pressure races past a split second before all of my senses are swallowed by a deafening bang that rattles my brain and the ground beneath me. Then . . . nothing at all. Only eerie silence and air.
I know that time has passed, but I can’t say whether it’s been a split second or ten minutes or an hour when I realize I’m lying on my back, staring up at a plume of white smoke, the familiar sweet metallic scent of expended gunpowder permeating my nostrils, my head stuffed with cotton. That eerie silence has given way to a high-pitched ringing and I cringe as it echoes in my eardrum. Maybe I cry out, too. If I do, I can’t hear it. I’m struggling to string together enough thoughts to understand what the hell just happened.
“Are you okay?” The question floats in from somewhere distant. And then suddenly a man hovers over me, a fringe of coppery hair like an untidy halo framing his face, staring down at me through mossy green eyes.
“What happened?” I manage to ask, though my voice sounds far away. At least I’m no longer winded.
“An explosion. A bomb.”
A bomb? A chill runs through my limbs as my brain wraps around that word, delivered in a light Irish brogue.
I sense hands slide along my thighs, over my knees, curling to the undersides, but I don’t think to deflect them. “You’ll be fine,” he mutters, a sigh of relief sailing from his lips. He shifts on his knees, making to stand.
And I seize his forearm, surprising myself with a sudden wave of strength as I hold him down. “Stay.”
His muscles tense beneath my fingertips. “I can’t. But please know that I didn’t do this.” Honest, pleading eyes implore me silently for a few heartbeats, and then he’s gone, running—albeit staggered and off-balance—before I can ask more questions. I roll my head to the side and watch him disappear into a line of trees, a dark stain blooming in the material of his vibrant green T-shirt.
Moments later, a jogger reaches me in a pant, a cell phone pressed against her ear and a panicked look on her face. Shouts sound from somewhere in the park and a chorus of sirens scream in the distance. Another jogger arrives some thirty seconds later. Next a security guard, and then a couple dressed in suits, on their way to work. Within minutes I’m encircled by people.
Despite everyone’s insistence that I stay lying down, I manage to sit up. Everything is spinning. The granola bar and orange juice that I stuffed into my mouth on my way out the front door churn and I can’t be sure I’ll keep them down. But I force myself to focus on my surroundings—the charred grass, the divots gouged in the oak tree trunk nearby, the singed leaves dangling above, their ashes floating like sooty snowflakes.
It begins to sink in.
I could be dead right now.
Had it not been for that guy, I might have been. He wasn’t trying to suffocate me. He was shielding me.
“You saved my life,” I whisper under my breath, knowing that my words will never find his ear.
Cocooned within a haze, I watch emergency vehicles and the police and bomb squad charge in, herding the spectators away from the crime scene like cattle, their radios buzzing, their notebooks and pens out and ready. Reflective yellow letters that read “Garda” stretch across bulletproof vests everywhere.
Paramedics rush over to me. I’m fine, I tell them. In shock and my hearing is still muffled, but otherwise . . .
I can’t believe I’m fine.
They help me onto a stretcher and wheel me over to the ambulance to examine me further. Again, I promise them that I know what I’m talking about. I’m a nurse, after all. The female paramedic nods and smiles, dabbing at my bottom lip with gauze. Only then do I see the blood, do I taste the copper.
I allow them to check my vitals as I watch the police dropping numbered markers all over the grass and beginning to question witnesses. I wonder how my dad would handle something like this. I’m pretty sure he’s never dealt with a bombing in Deschutes County, Oregon.
“How is she?” someone asks, pulling my attention to the left, where two police officers stand, watching.
“Only the small laceration on her bottom lip from what we can see, and her vitals are fine. Though it’ll take a while for the shock to wear off. She’s had quite the scare.” That assessment’s delivered with a wink, and then she begins packing up her kit.
“She’s awfully lucky . . .” To me, the tall, average-looking officer says, “I’m Detective Garda Garret Duffy. This is me partner, Detective Garda Paul O’Brien.” The man next to him, a pudgy middle-aged officer with a shiny, bald head, offers a tight smile. “Can we ask ya some questions?”
Despite the situation, I smile. Duffy sounds exactly like the leprechaun in the Lucky Charms cereal commercial. “Sure. Okay.”
“And would ya mind terribly if our colleagues examined your bag? This is yours, yeah?” He gestures at a man with white gloves hovering at the side.
I look down at the limp black knapsack that holds my umbrella, a couple of bottles of water, and a bag of grapes, no doubt a mess of pulp and juices now. I don’t know why they’d want to, but . . . “Go ahead.”
“Thank you,” Duffy says, smiling kindly at me, his notepad already open in his hand and waiting to be filled. “Let’s start with your name?”
“And you’re American, from the sounds of it?”
I nod but then answer, “Yes.” My dad taught me to always answer verbally, to avoid misinterpretation.
“Do ya have identification?”
“My passport. It’s in my backpack.”
“Okay.” He nods toward O’Brien. “We’ll get that. What are ya doing here in Ireland?”
“Are ya here alone?”
His forehead wrinkles in surprise. I get that reaction a lot. I guess I can understand it. It is a bit strange for a girl my age to be traveling alone. If he knew that I have thirteen other countries to visit after this, I’m sure he’d have a comment. “Do ya have friends or family, or acquaintances, in Ireland?”
“And how long have ya been in Dublin?”
“Just landed yesterday.”
He scribbles his notes down quickly. “And what were ya doing in the Green this morning, so early?”
“I was late for my tour bus and I was running through here to try to make up some time.” I guess it’s safe to say that the bus has left without me.
“So . . . ya were running across the grass.” His eyes and finger trail through the air, as if trying to get his bearings. “From which direction, exactly?”
I point across the way.
“Right. And then the bomb just exploded?” His impassive eyes remain glued to my face, waiting, as if readying my answer for a scale, to weigh its truth. Just like my dad’s eyes weigh on a person whenever he’s asking questions, whenever he’s digging for information that he thinks the person may be hiding.
My heart pounds in my chest as I begin to see this for what it really is. You don’t grow up with a father like Gabe Welles without learning what distrust feels like. And you don’t grow up with a brother like Jesse Welles without learning what questioning a person who you think is guilty of something sounds like.
Twenty-five years in the Welles family has taught me the art of suspicion well.
I summon whatever calm I can muster and look at the blast site—cordoned off with a new, bigger square of blue-and-white tape—through new eyes. A marker sits where I was found. Another one indicates where I’m guessing the bomb went off. A man is measuring the distance between the two points. Another man photographs the oak’s tree trunk, riddled with gashes, while his partner waits behind him, with plastic gloves and bags and tweezers to collect evidence.
I can see why the police might be suspicious. They’re probably wondering how I could have been that close and not earned a single shrapnel wound, when that tree has been brutalized. But what do they seriously think happened . . . that I set the bomb and decided to play victim?
My stomach drops.
Maybe that’s exactly what they’re wondering. When I replay the detective’s words about being awfully lucky from a moment ago inside my head, it doesn’t sound as sincere anymore. I can’t believe this. One day in Ireland and I’m being questioned by the police. This is something that happens to Jesse. Not to me.
“No. A man ran out of nowhere and knocked me down to the ground. Then the bomb exploded.”
It’s so slight that it’s almost imperceptible, but Duffy’s brow definitely jumps. “What did this man look like?”
“I don’t . . .” I frown, trying to picture his face. “He was young . . . Irish . . . I don’t know. He ran off right after.”
“In which direction?”
I point toward the bushes where I last saw him.
“What else can ya tell us about him?” O’Brien asks. They both stare at me, waiting, their demeanor having softened somewhat now that I’ve given them reason to suspect that maybe I’m just an American tourist who was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“I didn’t get a good look at him. I was in shock.” I’m still in shock.
“Anything at all. Was he tall, short? Twelve stone, fourteen stone . . .”
Duffy smirks. “Ye Americans call it ‘pounds.’?”
“Oh.” I shake my head. “I’m . . . not sure. A hundred and eighty pounds, maybe?”
“Think hard, Amber. We need to find him,” he pushes. “You said he was Irish. How do ya know that? Did he speak to ya?”
“Yes. He said that he didn’t do this,” I whisper, hearing his voice as I repeat the words. Remembering that pleading look in his eyes.
Duffy and O’Brien share a glance.
“You think he set it, don’t you?” I ask.
“Maybe,” Duffy says.
I frown. “That doesn’t make sense. Why would he jump in front of it to save me, then?”
O’Brien shrugs. “Change of heart? He saw a pretty bird and didn’t want to be responsible for her death.”
My cheeks heat with the unwanted compliment, although I really want to roll my eyes. Sometimes people with the best intentions say the most stupid things. I mean, does it all come down to looks? If I were ugly, would the guy have run the other way and let me blow to pieces?
Duffy must see my irritation. “He ran. Innocent people don’t run.”
My eyes drift to the spot in the trees where I saw him vanish, and I start to question myself. Am I a fool for believing him the second the words came out of his mouth? I didn’t even question why he might say something like that. Maybe . . . he knew the bomb was there, lying in quiet wait in the grass. He knew exactly where it was and he must have known when it would go off, the way he ran at me. If he had nothing to do with it, how would he know those kinds of details?
Maybe a bomber’s word isn’t worth much when he’s . . . a bomber.
But he saved my life. He put himself in harm’s way to protect me. Maybe innocent people don’t run, but bombers don’t save lives.
I dismiss the detective’s suspicion. After all, five minutes ago, he was ready to accuse me.
“What else did he say?” Duffy pushes.
“He asked if I was alright,” I mumble. “And then he ran.”
Duffy scribbles it down. “Good, Amber. What else? What about hair color? Eye color?”
“Green eyes.” Rich, insistent green eyes. “And I think he was hurt.” Because he put himself in harm’s way . . . for me. Suddenly, I don’t want to tell these two officers anything else. Not until I can wrap my head around this. “That’s all I can remember. I’m sorry.”
Duffy brings his radio to his mouth and begins spouting off a series of words and numbers that I can’t identify beyond knowing it’s police code. Buzzing fills the air and several uniforms scatter, directing each other with fingers and shouts. They’ll be canvassing the park and the area beyond the walls.
I wonder if they’ll find him.
“That’s helpful, Amber. We’ll check the hospitals.” He pulls a business card out of his pocket and hands it to me. “Ya may remember more after a few hours or a few days. Give me a ring if ya do.”
“They’re going to be wanting to talk to ya.” O’Brien nods toward something in the distance. I peek out around the back doors of the ambulance that shield me from prying eyes. News crews have begun to trickle in, their mammoth black cameras sweeping over the area. Fortunately they’re held back by a wide perimeter of tape and I’m still hidden.
I can see the headline now: American Girl Saved by Irish Good Samaritan, Who Then Runs.
I’m guessing this would be a story that the media would love. It would probably go viral. It would certainly be my way of making sure my thank you reaches him.
But it would also reach my parents, and guarantee that my dad’s first trip out of America would be to Ireland, for the sole purpose of dragging his daughter back in handcuffs if need be, twenty-five years old or not.
I pull the rim of my pink baseball cap down. “Any chance we can avoid them? And keep my name and picture out of the media? My dad won’t take this too well.”
Duffy eyes the gathering crowd. “They are hounds, aren’t they? Maybe we should give ya a lift somewhere.”
“That’d be great. I’m staying at a house on Hatch Street, just off Leeson. It’s a few blocks away.”
“I know the street.” He radios for a spare jacket, and I use it to shield my face and upper body as they usher me to their car.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Never Underestimate the Power of a Good Irish Story Eeeeeeep another amazing hit by K.A. Tucker! if there is an author to put on your auto-purchase list it's her. Amber and River were amazing together the chemistry was there, their connection instant and raw. Everything Amber has ever known about life changes so suddenly but in a remarkable way. This can be read as a stand alone but I don't recommend that. This whole series needs to be read from the very beginning to know all of the intricate details that make each connection so wonderfully put together. Amber is related to a main character from the first book and their appearances and references to characters from other books is absolutely one of my most favorite things ever!! The Story, Amber is on a sabbatical trip sans the sabbatical part...Lol she is off to see the world and find her place in it. Second stop is Ireland cue the not so perfect but perfectly sexy River. Sacrificing himself to do the right thing he risks his life for Amber and that is the start of an addictive wonderful love story. There was definitely a lot of learning that took place from all of the characters. Not knowing the danger, these two embark on a journey of discovering themselves and what matters most. The Characters, watch out this one may be long. Amber is Very smart and assertive we see how beautifully her character grows into someone who is willing to take risks for love. Even if those risks are out of character she embodies what it means to love freely and fiercely. River is kind and hardworking his character holds family and tradition above everything. His passion for family and willingness to provide and protect are traits that Amber falls in love with straight away. Though by societies standards these two are complete opposites their connection and their hearts scream otherwise. Nothing was forced between these two. Amber is so used to everything being planned out that what she feels for River scares her in the beginning. River has never felt a pull towards a woman the way he does towards Amber. He knows he isn't good enough for her but he will spend the rest of his life trying to be. Once Amber is willing to let go of the strict rules things begin to fall into place for these two. River goes through so much turmoil but by the end he knows what matters most and he is once again willing to sacrifice his life in order to do the right thing. The side characters were a joy! Rowen and Ivy have something going on so I hope we get to find out soon what that is!! The bad guys are absolutely insufferable and get their just desserts. I will admit that there were a few times my heart went out to River's awful brother. Alas, that discussion is for another day. I look forward to more from this wonderful cast! The End, this one was a little different than most. Typically Tucker gives us a look at the after...ya know? Not necessarily this time. I will say there is a lot of leading to where our lovelies stand but there is no concrete "the end". This is very much a to each is own type of thing so I won't push my opinion but I will say I love knowing what everyone is wearing at the wedding. I'm 100% with Ma in this epilogue I want to hear church bells and see a baby bump! There were a couple of open story lines that I hope continue in the next installment. I cant wait to see what is next in the Burying Water Series. This has been a roller coaster of emotion that I recommend everyone reads!
Chasing River is hands down my favorite book in the Burying Water series. KA Tucker takes us into a world that is equals lets exciting, fresh, and sexy. There are so many reasons why this books is so great. First off the location of this story. Chasing River takes place in Ireland, at the heart of a city so full of culture and history. I loved the history that bleeds through this story. There are so many new things to learn, an added bonus that gives a certain level of credibility to this book. Second, I absolutely adore River and Amber. These two characters are fabulous. They both are so well developed and different but they click perfectly. Amber has been a secondary character in this series and it was great to learn more about who she is as an individual and what she wanted to experience out of life. As anyone who has been lured by wanderlust or the chance to escape and find yourself, you cannot help but admire who Amber is. She is innocence and strength- a woman who understands so much but longs to learn more. She is challenged in this story and I loved watching her work though her emotions and preconceived notions. It is powerful to watch her choose her path. River is the beautiful Irishman that makes your heart melt. Their first encounter is untraditional to say the least but these two are drawn to each other. When we learn more of who he is and where he comes from, he becomes more beautiful and fascinating. He is a complex character who cannot be put into a box. River is a family man and a hard worker the world has judged him based on this past and it was nice to see him break out of that stereotype and prove his worth in both word and action. The story has several themes that caught my attention. Family is a huge theme for both River and Amber. They both interact constantly with those they love. It is a foundation for both characters, one that has shaped who they are and allows the reader to better understand who they are. I loved the romance between these two. There is a connection that they cannot ignore but watching them come to terms with this emotion and what it means is well written and evokes a response from the reader. Another major theme is the history of Ireland. This story was a beautiful love story but the added history creates an edge to the book. I love learning the history of this country in a story that draws you in. When I visit Ireland one day, I feel like I will remember this story, the glimpses into the history and culture not always readily shared, and bask in the beauty around me. Chasing River is a wonderful story that will hit you in all the right places and leave you wanting to explore the world.
I really enjoyed Chasing River by K.A. Tucker. This the third book in her Burying Water series. This story focuses on Jesse's sister Amber whom we first met in Burying Water. "I'll tell you a story about a lowly Irish peasant bartender who falls in love with a beautiful American princess." Amber Welles has been saving her money for the last couple years to be able to travel around the world and experience life outside of her small town. When she makes a stop in Ireland she decides to spend the day on a bus tour. She ends up running late so she takes a short cut across Steven's Greens and something horrible happens. Lucky for Amber a mysterious stranger is there to save her but he doesn't stick around long enough for her to thank him. Will Amber ever be able to find the man that saved her life? River Delaney does everything he can to keep his older brother out of trouble and when he finds out that Aengus is going to plant a bomb at the Greens he follows him. He also ends up saving a beautiful American girl who happened to be running through the Greens as the bomb was going off. He hopes that the girl didn't recognize him as he doesn't want the police to come looking for him. He goes back to work at the pub and can't believe his eyes when the beautiful American shows up his pub to thank him for saving her life. He knows he should stay away from her but there is something about her that he is immediately attracted to. What happens when Amber finds out who River really is? Will these two be to make a relationship work or will their completely different lives push them apart? A river may be diverted, its waters pooled, its natural course interrupted. But its current will only ever truly flow one way. I loved the connection between River and Amber. The secondary characters added lots of depth to the storyline. I loved the twists and turns the story took. I really enjoyed learning about some of the history of Ireland and now hope to be able to visit there someday. I can't wait to read Surviving Ice which is the next book in the Burying Water series.
Another great story! This author never diappoints, I love her writing style and the fact that i alwsys learn something from each of her books. I think Amber and River may be my favorites to date. Thanks KA Tucker for another awesome book! Bev Norcross
Wonderful read. I went into this book expecting K.A. Tucker to wow me with her witty yet compelling writing style and was pleasantly surprised to be introduced to a new element as well, history. A little too much history for my taste as I found it slowed down the story but it didn't take too much away from the overall story. Amber and River's story was beautiful. The way they got to know each other despite their unconventional first meeting was so sweet. I loved watching Amber slowly come out of her comfort zone. I didn't want to put this book down. I love the colloquialism embedded into the conversations. It really made me feel like I was in Ireland hearing the accents and all. I think a lot of people can find a little but of themselves Amber. She was so life like. A very real character with realistic character flaws. Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I'm really looking forward to Ivy's story and am hoping to see a little more of Amber and River in Surviving Ice.
Jointly reviewed with my co-blogger, Becca! THE STORY: Becca: Lisa and I were so excited to be reading Chasing River together! We are both such huge KA Tucker fans and she is definitely a must read Author for both of us! When we participated in the Cover reveal for Chasing River and saw this gorgeous cover and read the synopsis we were both sold! Chasing River is Amber’s story (Jesse from Burying Water little sister). She has decided to finally follow her dream and travel around the world and there is no better time since she just went through a very difficult break up . Her travels bring her to Ireland where she is immersed in their country and learning the somewhat volatile history of the country. While walking one morning a complete stranger saves her life and Amber makes it her mission to find him. The story of Amber and River is riveting and exciting! Even more interesting was the History and knowledge of Ireland that Tucker incorporates throughout the novel. I have some knowledge of the country’s history of turmoil but Tucker did an amazing job of including the history, while also making it an interesting part of the story and I really enjoyed it! Lisa: YES to everything Becca said! I fell in love with Amber in Burying Water, and I was so incredibly happy to find out we would finally get more of her in Chasing River. Amber, who worked as a nurse, was so career-driven and really worked her butt off. I was so happy to see she finally saved enough money up and was able to travel, as she had always dreamed of. (Can you tell how REAL these characters are to us? That’s K.A. Tucker’s amazing talent right there in full swing.) Amber, along with the help of her friend, came up with a Travel Bucket List, things she promised herself she would do. And the number one thing on that list: “1. Have a torrid affair with a foreigner.” The history included in this book was definitely interesting, I totally agree! It did make Chasing River a bit different than the others in the series, simply because of the amount of background and story building it had. Chasing River was less suspenseful and action-packed than the others, but it was still thoroughly entertaining! Especially the sexy Irish boys! THE CHARACTERS: Lisa: River, with his accent and standoff demeanor, was nothing like the kind of guy Amber usually falls for. American Princess Amber, with her fancy clothes and successful family, is the farthest thing River would bring home to his parents. But the two are thrown together, a simple case of being at the wrong place at the wrong (or right?) time, and their attraction to each other is undeniable. “And then I want to come back here, light all these candles…’ He kisses me again. ‘…and tell you a story about a lowly Irish peasant bartender who falls in love with a beautiful American princess.” I loved the slow burn of this relationship. Both knew it wasn’t right. There was no way a relationship between these two would work. River lived in Ireland and Amber was only visiting for a short time… and they fought their connection tooth and nail. River was so stubborn, yet protective and very family-driven. Amber was naive and came off as weak at times, but her inner strength was admirable. The few months together really changed both of their lives… for the better AND the worse. Becca: Lisa and I do enjoy a good slow burn romance and this definitely was that! I really liked River... a little too much. I kind of having a thing for cute accents a
K.A. Tucker has yet to disappoint.
KA Tucker's books just keep getting better and better. I fell in love with this auther the minute I started 10 Tiny Breaths. River and Amber's story has to be my favorite of this series. Please keep them coming Kathleen Tucker!
Let me start off by saying that normally I’m not one for suspense books. They makes my nerves shot and my stomach all twisty. But this Burying Water series by K.A.Tucker is one of the exceptions. This series has characters that draw you in. While some may not be the “perfect” characters(I mean, let’s face it, no one’s perfect) but you’ll find yourself rooting for them and hoping they find the right path. River is one of those characters. I liked River. I mean, let’s face it, he’s Irish. What’s not to like? He risks his life for someone, when most people would’ve just ran away. He works hard to keep his family’s pub running smooth, while trying to keep his trouble maker brother out of harm’s way. So when this American girl shows up and shows interest in him, he really should try and push her away. He’s not good enough for her. Amber Welles has wanted this trip for years. She even made a crazy vacation bucket list, with her brother’s girlfriend, Alex. #1 Have a torrid affair with a foreigner. Sounds easy enough. Everyone does that. Well, when you’ve just been saved by a ridiculous hot Irishman, an affair sounds like a good idea. YOLO, and all that. What she doesn’t know is that her savior, isn’t all she thinks he is. He has secrets that could change this course she’s on, if she’s not careful. Their love affair was not without lots and lots of bumps in the road. His past isn’t all sunshine and roses, and getting mixed up with the Sheriff’s daughter, who always does the right thing, may not be in his best interest. But maybe, just maybe, being chased is the best thing for him. I actually found myself really liking all the side characters, in this one. The Delaney family, with the exception of the oldest brother, was fun to read. I could hear Rowen’s teasing tone, right through the pages. But my favorite was Ivy. She may seem tough on the outside, but that girl has a sweet side that I’m sure will come out in the next book. I just know her book is going to be great!!
Another great installment from KA Tucker-solid 4.5 stars. This is the third in the series and while the beginning was a bit slow (even given that we know these characters from the previous two books) it was a captivating read once it got going. I loved the setting...Ireland baby...so beautiful. Loved the concept of the bucket list but truthfully I thought it would take a more prominent role-well that more would be crossed off (perhaps those will be in the next installment). Amber has been featured in both installments of the Burying Water series and it was so good to really get to know this good girl on her own personal journey of self discovery. River's entrance into her life was legendary...I mean how many men come into your life during an explosion...literally! I don't want to give the plot away, but Tucker's ability to hook readers with her romantic suspense style in unmatched and worth the investment of reading time. A perfect escape!
I really loved the first two books in this series and chasing river falls into line with the rest. The story takes you to Ireland and into the dark crime theme I've come to enjoy from K.A Tucker. This story pulls you in from the first few sentences and keeps you enthralled. Chasing river takes place during the same time as becoming rain. It allows you to get to know Amber and also introduces you to Ivy, the tattoo artist in burying water. It's a great set up for future books in this series and I felt the stories end was more completed than becoming rain. Definitely another favorite K.A. Tucker novel
Overall: 4.5 Stars 'Chasing River' is the third book in the 'Burying Water' series, but can easily be read as a standalone. While Amber was introduced to us in 'Burying Water' as Jesse's sister, much of the info we knew about her is reiterated in 'Chasing River,' though not all. But if you are new to this series, you can jump right in here, then go back to 'Burying Water' if you are intrigued to know more about Jesse and Alex's story (who we catch up with briefly, so there are some spoilers) and go back and read it. Now, while I found 'Burying Water' to be a captivating, compelling story, I also found it to be quite melancholy. Not the case with 'Chasing River,' which I liked even more. Sure, we are given a perspective on the IRA and Ireland's bloody history. Yes, our hero and heroine are faced with some difficult and trying circumstances. Yes, there are some irreversible repercussions to certain events that occur. But, overall, I found the relationship and romance between Amber and River to be super sweet and uplifting, and I loved their story so much. I loved Amber and River. Getting to know Amber and watching her handle things was both appealing and refreshing. She somehow was able to balance shyness and boldness, naivete and wisdom, love and realism. Not only is she traveling the world alone, but when she gets the scare of her life, she takes the detour in stride. It's no wonder that River is attracted to her, beyond just the physical. I loved the chemistry between them and the genuine sincerity with how they treat each other with respect. But knowing their time is limited, I also loved how they didn't let that stand in their way. And River was such a fantastic guy. With the hurts of his past, he could have easily gone the negative route. But instead his character has grown over the years - quite literally to hero status. Amber was one lucky gal to be saved by this lad. Then watching River's life and family unfold, I liked him even more. And then there's the way he treats and respects Amber that puts his awesomeness status to the top. Seriously, these two needed to be with each other because, even though on paper they were so different, they couldn't have been more perfect for each other. Overall, 'Chasing River' was a wonderfully captivating read, a breathtaking journey amidst the craziness of an Irish vacation, but the beauty of finding the perfect person in imperfect circumstances. I easily fell in love with River and Amber. And did I mention River has two brothers? I really hope we see more of them in the future, along with River and Amber. I'm so very curious!
I settled in for a little K.A. Tucker binge read about a week ago. Somehow, I’d missed reading Becoming Rain, even though I had a review copy. (Major fail on my part.) I devoured it and loved it, so I decided to keep going to and read Chasing River while I was still in that world. I’m glad I did, too. It was an excellent addition to the Burying Water series. Chasing River starts off with a quite literal bang when Amber happens upon a bomb laid by a radical group while on holiday in Ireland. Fortunately, she’s saved just in time by an Irish stranger. What she doesn’t know at the time is this stranger’s brother is responsible for her near death experience. This truth comes out sooner rather than later, after she goes hunting for the stranger who saved her life. Some other truths, however, take a little longer to do the same. I was relatively warm to Amber’s character after having met her originally in Burying Water. We didn’t learn that much about her in that book, but I liked what I knew. I was hoping she would get a book of her own one day. I really liked that the backdrop for her story took her away from Sisters and to where she could be her own woman and find herself away from her parents. She needed that. Over the course of this book, I only grew to like Amber more. River was an interesting guy to try to wrap my head around. I mean you can’t NOT like the guy who saves the heroine – especially when he’s a hot Irish bartender. I just had some issues with him not being upfront with Amber about just what she was getting herself into by spending time with him. I mean, I understand why he was trying to protect her, but it doesn’t mean I liked it. When it was all said and done though, I really liked River. He was more than his past would lead you to believe. He definitely made me swoon a couple times. One of my favorite things about this book was how Ireland’s history was woven seamlessly into the story. I knew I was getting a bit of a history lesson, but it wasn’t anything like reading out of a history book – and I never felt like it was being shoved down my throat. It was a great complement to the romance and even the suspense and action of Chasing River. That said, I also did love the romance. I liked watching Amber and River come together with the knowledge that an ocean would soon keep them apart. Of course, I was hoping they’d find a way to make things a little more permanent, but I won’t tell you if they did or not. You’ll need to read to find out. Chasing River was a great follow-up to two amazing stories in Burying Water and Becoming Rain. I liked that we got a few glimpses into the lives of some of the other characters, even with them not being together geographically at the time. I also really enjoyed learning more about Ivy, who will be the heroine in the next novel, Surviving Ice. I kinda fell in love with her spunky self in this book, so I’m even more excited to read her story now. I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.
Rating 4.5 Unlike the first two books, I wasn’t left unsatisfied with the ending of Chasing River. Of course, I’d love more of Amber and River’s story, but it’s not because of a lack of conclusive ending. It’s purely wanting more of two characters I enjoyed. So, once again, K. A. Tucker delivers another book that I absolutely love. Pros: – Ireland: This book definitely gets bonus points for taking place overseas (and in a place that I’d love to visit). – River: Swoon worthy! And I’m totally a sucker for green eyes. – Ivy: Seeing Ivy in this book makes me impatient to get my hands on her book, Surviving Ice (expected publication October 13, 2015). Cons: – Not enough travel! Amber was set to travel the world and I selfishly would have liked to see more of it. * This book was received from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. * You can read all of my reviews on my blog, KDH Reviews.
Chasing River. A book that not only transported me to the beautiful country of Ireland, but convinced me I'd never want to leave. K.A. Tucker absolutely captivated my heart and soul with this book. We get the stunning descriptions of a land I am anxious to discover and a love story that I couldn't get enough of. Amber Welles and River Delaney are two people so very different yet somehow are the perfect match. River saving Amber's life was certainly the most unusual start to her European trip, yet that wasn't the most shocking part of her journey through the Emerald Isle. As much as these two belong together, since their chemistry is downright intoxicating, and the pure joy in their eyes whenever each is nearby is simply blissful, secrets held by River threaten to destroy the very happiness each has finally found. The story-line is simply exquisite. We have a gorgeous love story with Amber only in Ireland for a week, falling for a pub owner who she suddenly can't be without. And underneath is a tale about the Delaney family history, some noble, some criminal. The way the author combines the two is genius. With each new book in this Burying Water series, I can't help but praise K.A. Tucker's writing and watch as it again reaches yet another level. Some great surprises in the form of Ivy, the tough tattoo artist, who shared some painful years in High School with Amber and a visit by daddy Gabe,the retired sheriff, gave this book some great highlights. In addition, Rowen Delaney provided some much needed comic relief when moments felt too heavy. I am truly and unequivocally in love with this book. Talk about the feels. I've got them tenfold and still don't want to let go. I can't recommend this book highly enough. I have loved all the author's work but this one now has a special place in my heart. You will swept away in this small-town in Ireland and much like Amber, will not want to move on. A huge 5 +++++++ stars!
I really didn't think that I was going to care for Amber's story all that much as she just wasn't someone I was super interested in from Burying Water but I LOVED this book. Amber and River are amazing and there's plenty of other things going on without being distracting. This was a fantastic read and I can admit that I stayed up way too late to finish this book.
Chasing River is the third book in the burying water series by K.A. Tucker. River and Amber are from two different worlds. River's brother is into some criminal activity that puts not just himself, but his entire family in danger. Amber was the popular girl with the cop father. Their worlds cross while Amber is on vacation. The attraction is quick, but it could be clouded by the fact River saved Amber's life. The violence and trouble continues on after the rescue because of River's brother's shady dealings. Through the story, we're given a lot of history. I don't know much about Ireland's history, so I can't vouch for the accuracy, but it sure was interesting and sad. I haven't read the previous books in this series yet, but after reading this one, I would like to go back and read those as well. The ARC of Chasing River by K.A. Tucker was kindly provided to me by the publisher for review. The opinions are my own.
I am such a huge, huge fan of K.A. Tucker’s so of course I had to jump at the opportunity to review book 3 in the Burying Water series. I adored books 1 and 2, and Chasing River (Burying Water #3) did not disappoint! Throw in a sexy bad boy with a wicked Irish accent and…OMG… Amber Welles finds herself on an adventure around the world where she is slowly ticking things off on her bucket list. But her time in Dublin, Ireland is one that she will not forget. Could it be because she almost got killed by a bomb that goes off in a public park where she just happens to be walking through? Probably. Could it be because of the hot guy who saved her life from said bomb and who, in turn, sustained an injury because of this act? Most likely. As fate would have it, upon one of Amber’s excursions, she sees the crest that she remembers about her white knight from a tourist’s t-shirt. So what’s the next logical step? Track him down of course! River Delaney’s life is not perfect, and it’s not made any easier thanks to his oldest brother and his ties to the IRA. And River couldn’t predict that by trying to stop his brother from planting a bomb at a public park that he would also be saving the life of an American tourist. Thinking that it was a onetime encounter, River continues on with running the family pub. But who should walk through the doors? Someone River thought he would never, in a million years, think that he would see again. I’m gonna throw this out there…Aside from a man in uniform (because *swoon*), a man with an accent is dead sexy. So of course River was totally swoon worthy in my head. Throw in the “bad boy” aspect and whoo hooo, you have yourself a new book boyfriend, people! Amber, on the other hand, was a character that I slowly grew to like. I felt that she felt she was “too good” for some things…like it was beneath her. That annoyed me. I did like how she grew as a character in the book and was able to leave her past behind her, and move forward with her life. The connection between River and Amber is one that you can’t miss. There was a lot of flirtatious back and forth, but they don’t act on it right away, which left me screaming in my head for them to just get it on already. But as I’ve been told (and obvi have a hard time practicing), patience is a virtue and with patience came a super sweet love story that was unfolding before my very eyes. The appearances of past characters is again something that happens in this book, and I love it! I love when characters make guest appearances in books, and this one did not disappoint. But with the old also comes the new, and I adored a lot of the new characters that were introduced in Chasing River by K.A. Tucker. The writing continues the same as the first two books in that it is a lot darker, but not at all disappointing! Author K.A. Tucker continues to wow me with her stories and writing style, and her characters are all unforgettable in their own way (the good AND the bad). If you’re looking for a read where the main character finds herself, this is the book for you. If you’re looking for a book where the male lead will sweep you off your feet, dude, this is the book for you. Don’t hesitate in picking up a copy of Chasing River by K.A. Tucker, and while you’re at it, pick up the first two books in this series. You will not be disappointed.
Absolutely loved this book...Definatly a favorite of mine. It kept me on the edge of my seat.
When I pick up a book by K.A. Tucker, I know it’s going to be a wonderful reading escape. Her Burying Water series has been such a captivating reading journey. Even if all the books can be read as standalones, I highly suggest you read all of them. K.A. Tucker’s writing style is phenomenal!!! Each time I read one of her books I feel like I’m not only reading the story, but I feel like I’m living it. In Chasing River we follow Amber Welles and River Delaney. Amber is travelling the world with a bucket list that is out of this world!!! I’m so jelly of the things she has crossed off that list!! She has visited some spectacular places and Ireland is one of them. When she arrives in Ireland, she has it all planned out until a mysterious stranger saves her from an explosion that could have been fatal. She is determined to find him so she can say thank your for saving her life. A man wearing a t-shirt with a familiar logo brings her straight to the doors of Delaney’s Pub. As days go by, Amber and River grow closer and their chemistry is undeniable. River can’t deny that the beautiful American girl has gotten under his skin. He has never met anybody like Amber and the more time he spends with her, the more he wants her to stay in Ireland. Getting close to her means letting her know about his past and the secrets he’s been keeping. What will happen when Amber finds out about River’s past and his secrets? Will she continue her once in a lifetime trip or will she stay behind with River? I really enjoyed this story! Amber and River are such an adorable couple that made my heart happy and their incredible journey left me with a smile on my face. K.A. Tucker’s characters are always strong, confident and fascinating. They all have that little something that makes them unique. I connected with Amber and River from the very beginning. I could feel the chemistry between them and River made me swoon so many times I lost count!!! I don’t want to reveal the details surrounding River’s family, but what I will tell you is that I was at the edge of my seat to see what was going to happen next! River had some difficult decisions to make. I loved how he confided in Amber. I don’t think he was expecting her to understand his life journey, but she did. The conversations they had about their lives made me connect with them event more. By the end of this book, I felt like I knew these characters all my life. It was fascinating to read about Ireland. It makes me want to pack my bags and leave on a long trip just like Amber did! The supporting cast of characters was amazing!! Each character had a role to play in Amber and River’s journey. From River’s family to Amber’s friend, Ivy, I really enjoyed what they brought to the story. It’s always a pleasure to read about the people that are surrounding the main characters. This was a fantastic reading journey that I highly recommend. Pick up this book and embark on an amazing reading escape that will leave your heart happy! I give Chasing River, by K.A. Tucker, 4 fascinating, swoony, page-turning, pack your bags and escape to beautiful Ireland stars!
3.5 (liked it a lot) I wanted to read Chasing River because I enjoyed the first two books in the series, and her other NA series. She writes perfectly flawed characters that are easy to love, and an addictive plot. I love the premise of River saving Amber and that being the catalyst for their romance. He dove in front of a bomb to knock her down and shelter her and then he ran because it was his brother who planted the bomb. The beginning for me was a little slow while in the POV of River, maybe it was the accent and word choices that aren't familiar, or maybe another factor, but soon enough I liked hearing his thoughts. Amber is Jesse's sister from the previous series. She is a nurse and known by a lot of the town as the sheriff's daughter, so she felt a lot of pressure growing up to not let down her dad, his image, or the one she percieves as herself. But she is traveling around for a few months because she has dreamt of it for years. Ireland surely wasn't what she'd planned though, from the bomb, the gorgeous guy who saved her from dying or much worse injuries, to making a new friend of a girl she went to high school with but they both had animosity towards the other for misunderstandings as they came to realize once they talked about it. River helps run his family's pub, and he loves the culture, the closeness with his younger brother who works day to day with him, and his parents who run the business end. But he has the black sheep of the family, his older brother, who is a part of the IRA, what was once a resistance group fighting for a better Ireland, but now terrorists just using the prestige of the name. River loves Aegnus, his brother, but can't get him free of the trouble that he's wrapped up in. But he's family so River tries to protect him as much as he can, because of all of the things that Aegnus is not, he is loyal. Amber can't get the handsome guy out of her head that saved her and then ran, and a few chance encounters with a local to their pub leads her to him. The intensity of what they experienced together and the closeness and attraction they felt in the moment where River saved her causes an intense bond and neither can shake the memory of the other. So when she walks in it sets off the series of events that lead them even closer together and finding their time focused on the other. Though it is insta-love pretty much, explained a bit by the circumstances that they met. Amber tries to hold on to her rational mind. At first, she thought maybe he would be a perfect candidate for the first item on her travel bucket list-- have a torrid affair with a foreigner. But the more time they end up spending together, the more they want to stay together longer. Through a series of events that left me pretty speechless, but can't talk about much here without spoiling, violence didn't end with that first bomb, and both River and Amber have to make some hard choices when their run ins with the garda, the law enforcement, won't leave them alone about the bomb and subsequent violence, because Amber is protecting River, and River is trying to protect Aegnus. When Amber learns some truths about her dad, some that she would never expect in regards to her brother, it helps her understand more about what River was feeling with his brother, but also gave her insight on when its okay to bend or break the law to protect people you love and when you have to let natural consequences be the guide.