Melanie Sharp is a talented up and coming artist. Landscapes and portrait painting are her passion, but she also designs ice sculptures for weddings and charity events. Life suddenly gets complicated for Melanie when one of her promotional fliers is found at the burned out home of a man she’d been seeing, until she learned that he was already married. Due to a previous arson charge and her association with the ‘victim’ Melanie becomes the primary suspect.
Melanie spent the night painting in order to have her latest work ready in time for her first exhibit. The last thing she needs or wants is a fabulously gorgeous man at her front door while she’s wearing as much color as the canvas she’d been painting. Knox identifies himself and proceeds to ask her a few questions regarding the flier and if she knows anything about the homeowners of the burned out house. Melanie does know who the owners are, but she denies it. Knox notices her too quick response but he doesn’t really expect her to confess either. What he doesn’t expect is the appealing effect she has on him. She’s definitely not his type and even if she was, he’d be risking his career by getting involved with a suspect.
The first time Knox sees Melanie out in public she’s all cleaned up and eating lunch with a friend at O’Malley’s. Melanie’s still definitely hostile, but Knox pays a visit to her table anyway. Melanie’s friend, Kay, is more than friendly and even invites Knox to join them, but Melanie succeeds in embarrassing both Knox and Kay by mentioning that Kay has a burning question for Knox - how far does his fire hose extend?
Jerri Drennen’s FIRE & ICE captured my interest from the very first page and didn’t let go until I’d finished the whole book. Knox and Melanie are both lovable characters who have had their fair share of relationship woes and are still dealing with ex’s who are doing their best to hang on. There’s an intriguing secondary storyline involving Kay and her ex-fiancé Paul, whom she’d left at the altar but is still secretly loves. It’s very easy to fall in love with each of these characters. The arson case fascinated me as well. I thought I had it all figured out several times, but the facts exceeded anything I had expected. This is a fun love story. It proves the old adage that FIRE & ICE mixed together definitely sizzles.