There is something about Nora Roberts that keeps you hooked to her books from page one. The Winning hand is no exception. It is a story set in the back drop of Las Vegas and its famous casinos which makes it all the more colorful and interesting. The book is part of the MacGregors series (which I was not aware of till I was well into the book). The book is number seven of the series, but it can be read as a stand alone novel as well. I have not read any of the other books in this series, but was still able to enjoy it.
Darcy Wallace arrives in Vegas with just nine dollars and thirty seven cents to be precise after having her purse stolen and her car getting broken down in the middle of nowhere. But the fire in her keeps her going and she walks up to Vegas and finds herself drawn to The Comanche, a casino. Deciding to try her luck, with hardly anything to lose, she puts all her last money into a slot machine. And Viola! She hits the jackpot winning close to two million dollars!
She faints in the shock and wakes up in the arms of Robert MacGregor Blade. He is the ultimate hero of all novels, tall, dark and handsome. And of course, the attraction is mutual. Mac describes Darcy as pixie like with her delicate frame and short hair. He is often seen comparing her to a fairy (without the wings). Meanwhile, Darcy is a librarian cum budding writer who is fleeing her past from Kansas city. She has a dominating fiance- Gerald who makes a short appearance after her press conference regarding her stroke of luck.
Darcy seems to be on a winning streak, not with just the money flowing into her hands, but also in terms of her love life and career. She completes her two books while staying at the Comanche. What a life! The relationship between Darcy and Mac is however, predictable. There are sparks flying and of course, Mac cannot be sure whether he just wants to protect this innocent virgin (Yes, you heard that right!) from the bad world out there or whether, he has indeed fallen in love with this petite woman.
We can also see a lot of other interesting characters of the MacGregor family including Mac's parents, his grandfather and his Uncle. They make the story more lively and prevents it from dragging. The chemistry and fireworks between Mac and Darcy is predictable, but necessary for the story to move on. Another character which fascinated me was Serena, Mac's mother, a strong independent woman with an eye for gambling and winning. I would love to hear her story and maybe shall try to get my hands on that book (Playing the odds, which is the story of how Serena and Justin- Mac's parent met, on a Caribbean cruise, no less!).
The Winning Hand, is rightly named and does justice to the fans of Nora Roberts, who will not be disappointed on reading it. Bottom line- I really liked it and would definitely give it a four stars on five as I enjoyed it immensely and finished it over the night. The book is not too long, which is a plus point, else it would have definitely been a drag. Go for this one, if you are looking for some romance and an interesting plot. After all, we have all dreamed of being Darcy at some point and turning a millionaire overnight!