Heiress Alyssa Brooks learns her fiancé, Nate, has ulterior motives in marrying her so she breaks the engagement. His reaction frightens her so badlyHeiress Alyssa Brooks learns her fiancé, Nate, has ulterior motives in marrying her so she breaks the engagement. His reaction frightens her so badly that she runs to her childhood crush, Hunter Reece, for protection. He's a former Marine sniper, now an operative with Once a Marine Security.
This series has turned out to be one of my most pleasant reading surprises. Each book has featured women and men of substance who are making the best of troubling circumstances and this one is no different.
Hunter struggles with nightmares resulting from all of the kills in his career and turns to his sculpting for relief and release. Alyssa uses her photography as an outlet to express her true self, very different from her public image as a spoiled rich girl. I loved their relationship for its honesty and sincerity. They had deeply rooted feelings for each other stemming from their childhood and it was a great foundation for their developing romance. It was really well done, in spite of Hunter's fears that his past service made him unloveable.
The tension related to Nate's threats provided an element of suspense that made an already good story better. I loved and respected both characters as well as the romance. This series will continue to be an auto read for me.
(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)...more
Recently divorced Kate Kingston has received death threats, sent to her father who's a Philadelphia judge. Since iOriginally posted onThe Book Nympho
Recently divorced Kate Kingston has received death threats, sent to her father who's a Philadelphia judge. Since it isn't clear why she's targeted, Dad arranges for her to go undercover in Barefoot Bay with protection provided by Gabe Rossi. He figures he can kill two birds with one stone when he assigns another client, mixed martial arts trainer Alec Petrov to be part of Kate's cover and her bodyguard, posing as her newlywed husband. Alec's on the run from the Russian mob so the situation is dangerous.
It doesn't get much scarier than the Russian mob so things were always quite tense in this story. I loved the parallel points of view from all those involved as it kept the suspense level very high. However, it was balanced by the developing romance between Kate and Alec. I really fell for him as he was pretty special, not at all my typical "type" but a very well developed (pardon the pun) character. There were a few times, however, that I wanted to throttle Kate because of a couple of TSTL (too stupid to live) moments where she could have gotten Alec killed.
I loved the story, the characters (yes, Kate redeems herself), the suspense and the humor. The romance was lovely with some over-the-top sensual interludes. There's a couples massage on the beach that you really have to read and highlight because once isn't enough. Can't wait for the next book. 4.5 stars
(I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review)...more
Quick summary Jared Livingston was married and working as Kane Enterprises' lead investigator in his last major appearance. He's now divorced, an LCR oQuick summary Jared Livingston was married and working as Kane Enterprises' lead investigator in his last major appearance. He's now divorced, an LCR operative and almost nothing like the character we knew from that story. He's remote and has a reputation for taking significant risks but doesn't have relationships with anyone aside from his existing one with Lucas Kane. Mia Ryker runs a rescue operation in Chicago and reaches out to LCR when she encounters an infant abduction case that seems to connect with one of theirs. She's teamed with Jared and it's an unlikely but brilliant match.
What I liked Mia is now one of my favorite heroines and only she could bring down the cold and stoic Jared. She's natural and underneath that sweet personality and delicate frame is a well trained operative who handles herself. Jared never had a chance of getting away but not because of any guile or planning on Mia's part. It was her genuine nature that disarmed him and floored him. You won't find any games or trite misunderstandings in this romance. I loved them together.
We learn early on who's behind these infant abductions and I really liked the parallel scenes coming from the villains' points of view. I never wanted to see a bad guy taken down as much as the narcissistic jerk in this story. The final showdown was really well done as it's not just a test of skills but also an extraordinary connection established between Mia and Jared.
The bottom line I wasn't excited about starting this story but quickly got engaged. It's a very good balance of suspense and romance, all developing at a perfect pace. The climax was perfectly suited to the characters, weaving the romance and the op skillfully. This is one where the romance captured my heart. ...more