Born to Be Wild is the second in Donna Kauffman’s The Three Musketeers series. Dara Colbourne spent her childhood trying to be included in the close friendship shared by Zach, Jarrett and her twin brother, Dane. All she got for her trouble was merciless teasing by Zach. Now, all grown up, Dara works for a foundation that grants wishes to seriously and terminally ill children. She hasn’t seen Zach in years, but now he’s been picked by a donor to head up a camping trip for some of her kids. Zach runs an adventure business, taking thrill-seekers to extreme locations – like skiing down an active volcano or swimming with sharks. Dara doesn’t think that he’s the right person for the job but Zach won’t let it go and gets her to agree to a trial run. If she finds his plan acceptable, she will ask the foundation board to approve him for the trip. But spending time together might show them both that the teasing from their childhood has grown into something much more adult.
I have to be honest – I had to read this story twice. The first time I only made it about half way before I put it down to read something else. And I can’t pinpoint exactly why. The writing is great, the characters are interesting, and the plot-line is intriguing. I think maybe I just couldn’t personally connect with the conflict in the story. Dara’s history means she has issues with the way Zach makes a living – her dad died in a small plane crash when she was in her teens and she lost her fiancé to a surfing accident while in college. She’s afraid of losing someone else in her life because of their need for an adrenaline rush. Even though Zach works very hard to minimize any risks involved on his trips, it doesn’t make it any easier for Dara. Zach loves what he does but he can understand why Dara might have trouble with the dangers involved. Once they finally give in to each other the pages fairly sizzle and the ending was wonderful. I’m happy that I finished the book – it was satisfying and the story is handled delightfully.
Born To Be Wild is a story about reconnecting with your past and with yourself. Dara & Zach’s journey is fulfilling and, if you have the same problem I did, just keep reading. It is worth your time.
***Although this is the second story in a series it can stand alone. The characters do make appearances in each of the stories, but not in any way that would be confusing. Please keep in mind that this is a reprint and the original was published in 1995 so there is some outdated technology. Overall though, the story does not show its age. I also reviewed the first story in the series, Surrender the Dark. For that review, please visit here. ***