HEATED RIVALRY - Patricia Sargeant
REVIEWER: Susan Plummer | RATING: B
REVIEW: HEATED RIVALRY by Patricia Sargeant lives up to its title with a riveting plot and memorable characters. Valerie Parker wants to prove to her father, Garrison Parker, that she deserves a promotion in the family’s Ad agency. When she lands a sales pitch for a major ad campaign, instead of allowing Valerie to make the presentation, Garrison hands it off to his partner, Steven Crennell, Valerie’s rival. Steve is a retired basketball star launching a new career. He wants to make a home at Parker Agency but he also wants Valerie. Valerie is attracted to Steven but he stands between her and her promotion. Pitted between father and daughter, Steven is torn. He finally makes a decision that could end his budding relationship with Valerie although he’s made the right choice. Valerie is mad thinking Steven sided with her father. Steven defends his choice, knowing he went with his gut instinct. Grudgingly Valerie acquiesces admitting that Steven did not side with her father but chose what he thought was best overall. The couple unites and Valerie no longer has to worry about Steven’s choices. No matter what happens, they’ll always be by each other’s side.
HEATED RIVALRY has several subplots and they comingle smoothly. There’s an ex who doesn’t want to remain an ex, secrets unspoken; just to name a few. Valerie is an accomplished marketing exec yet when it comes to her relationship with her father, she is reduced to this needy person who feels invalidated by his indifference. In Valerie’s defense, she falters but doesn’t fail despite her father’s lack of support. Steven has flaws too but they don’t detract from him being a strong male who is very considerate of others. I liked these human qualities in characters because it makes for a more interesting story. Valerie’s father is a great protagonist but his motives are revealed in the end.
The story is set in Coral Gables, Florida which is a great location but not integral to the plot. However, Steve and Valerie’s trip to Colorado was quite comical. HEATED RIVALRY is a perfect descriptor for the exchanges between Valerie and Steven. Their dialogue is always spirited whether they agree or disagree. It gets more combustible when they finally act upon their feelings.
HEATED RIVALRY is an enjoyable novel with great characters. I liked the layers of the story and how each unfolded giving answers to questions posed earlier. Overall this is an entertaining novel that is sure to appeal to many readers.
Reissue - Reviewed 1st May 2010 | firstname.lastname@example.org