Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Synopsis: Britt Pfeiffer has never been that adventurous, but that’s about to change. Wanting to impress her ex-boyfriend, Britt convinces best friend, Korbie, to take a trekking trip with her. But when a freak storm leaves the girls stranded they seek shelter in a cabin, where they find two knights in shining armour. Or so they think.
Britt quickly realises that the girls need to get off the mountain, fast. In exchange for her life, she is forced to guide the boys down, and as they set out on a harrowing journey through the cold and snow, Britt realises the only way to escape with her life is to pretend she is on their side. But is gorgeous, sexy Mason an enemy or an ally? Tension mounts, and it’s only a matter of time before things turn deadly . . .
Dark and adrenaline-filled, Black Ice will have you on the edge of your seat right until the final twist
Review: Instead of spending her holidays with her friends in Hawaii, Britt and her best friend Korbie are spending their spring break at Korbie’s parents cabin and hiking through the Grand Teton Mountains in Wyoming. Britt has been planning this trip for months, training for it even, but things take an unexpected turn for Britt when Korbie’s parents insist that Calvin chaperones the girls. That would be okay if Calvin was just Korbie’s older brother, but Calvin is also Britt’s ex-boyfriend. He broke her heart, she still loves him, and now he will be there on their spring break.
After hitting a blizzard on their way up to the cabin, Britt and Korbie find themselves stranded. They go searching for help, and find it in the form of an old log cabin, and two handsome guys. Although one of these sexy guys is clearly hostile, they take refuge in their cabin. Even though one of the guys is making them slightly uncomfortable, they are warm, dry and not outside facing freak blizzard. However, things turn bad when they are both taken hostage by these two guys. They are fugitives and dangerous, and now the girls are fearing for their lives.
Britt convinces the guys that she can get them off the mountain. And using a map that she found in Calvin’s car, and a few smarts, she sets off into the blizzard as their hostage. Britt now has to fight for her life. She knows that girls have been murdered up here, and she knows the only reason she is alive because the guys think that she is their best way off the mountain. She is the middle of a forest with two dangerous men – could they be the men that killed those girls? All Britt knows is that she has to stay alive long enough for Calvin to save her.
I have to say, that Britt, although at times had her moments of genius, also had a lot of moments where I couldn’t stand her. She is a spoilt brat. She has constantly allowed the men in her life, her father, her brother, her ex-boyfriend, to look after her, to protect her. Although she recognises this, which I do give her credit for, it doesn’t excuse the fact that she likes to play the damsel in distress. During the story she does show signs of independence and intelligence, but she constantly fell back to “Calvin will save me” attitude.
Which that leads me to Calvin. Britt is clearly still pining of Calvin. In fact, this trip she planned was to impress Calvin. But as the book goes on, and you get to see some of their relationship via flashbacks, you get to see that Calvin is a douche. Why she was pining over a guy who treated her the way he did, I will never understand. I understand the whole “first love” thing, but seriously, the fact that this character pined over him made me rage. Especially when she is talking about wanting him back, but not until he has “sufficiently suffered”. But even after she is taken hostage, she constantly thinks about Calvin, and how great they were together and how she was waiting for him to come save her (then she could forgive him for everything he had done – yes, she actually said this).
And her childish little games didn’t only extend to Calvin, but also her best friend. She started flirting with a stranger, just to infuriate her friend. Now I am not saying that Korbie was a great friend (she was anything but), but here Britt was whining about the fact that Korbie thought everything was a competition, and yet she was more than happy to play games herself. They kind of had that sibling rivalry thing going on, and while I think that Britt honestly cared about Korbie, these two were not a great match.
But we do some good moments of Britt’s – she can be smart and resourceful when she wants to be. And these are the moments I liked. But they did not override the moments where she made bad decisions, jumped to conclusions, ignored some pretty disturbing facts, pined over her idiotic ex and played the damsel in distress.
Britt’s kidnappers Shaun and Mason are a very different pair. Not only are they different personalities, but Britt also can’t work out the dimension between the two. Shaun is the one who takes charge, but yet, he seems scared of Mason. Mason acts like the lackey, but at times will stand up and make a decision. It is an interesting dynamic, and it confuses Britt constantly. Mason kidnapped her, but at times shows her unusual kindness. He tells her that he will not protect her, but then goes out of his way to do just that. He is also clearly hiding a secret but Britt cannot work out what it is. And the other thing that confuses Britt is that tiny, little inconvenience of starting to fall for Mason. She tries to tell herself at times that it is Stockholm Syndrome, is that it, or is she really falling for the guy holding her hostage?
Overall, I didn’t mind the plot, but I wasn’t surprised by the “twist” either. I had actually worked that out quite early on. Britt as a protagonist was one that I can’t say I loved. She annoyed me more than I liked her, but she did get a little better towards the end (after a major “you idiot” moment).
The book itself was a little slow in parts, but hey, they are tracking through a mountain in a snow storm – there are going to be those moments. The story really picks up at around the three quarter mark. I have to say it was the strong ending that made me like this book. Without giving too much away, I liked the fact that it wasn’t a “the protagonist works out the truth, there is a quick encounter where she confronts him, the bad guy gets caught, the end” type of story. The ending for me was pretty solid even though it took her a while to get there. For me, the ending of the story was certainly the saving grace of this book, I really enjoyed the last part of this journey.
The mountains are a dangerous place, kidnappers, bears, murderers, snow storms, secrets – will Britt make it out alive?
“Go to hell.”
“Sorry, love, but we’re already there.”
“They say that when you’re about to die, your life flashes before your eyes. They never tell you that when you watch someone you once loved dying, hovering between this life and the next, it’s twice as painful, because you’re reliving two lives that traveled one road together.”
“You’re damn right I’m jealous,” he growled. “When I kiss a girl, I like to know she’s thinking about me, not the fool who gave her up.”