Zeek's Reviews > Wild Card

Wild Card by Lora Leigh
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Mar 01, 10

really liked it
bookshelves: rom-military, romance, rom-suspense, contemp-rom, alpha-hero
Read in December, 2008

There are only two series the prolific Lora Leigh writes I continue to follow: that being the Breeds and her Tempting SEALs series.

By far the Breeds are my favs, but the latest- and I believe the last Tempting SEALs team entry as well as the first in a band new one called Elite Ops, - reminded me so much of the Breeds, I enjoyed it much more than the previous entries.

Sure, there wasn't fated mating heat or animal "instincts" popping up everywhere, but the hero is uber alpha and that coupled with a scorching love story, almost matched it for me!

PLUS, for my fellow paranormal romance fans, there was just a touch of magic in the Hero's Irish eyes to appease even me!

In this story we finally get Nathan Malone's story. In previous novels, Nathan was captured by the mostly evil but certainly morally bankrupt Diego Fuentes. He was pumped full of a drug called Whore's Dust- sorta like a hyper ruffie- tortured, and generally soul scarred by the time he managed to survive an explosion that set him free.

Because of all he endured, he went along with the governments decision to allow Nathan Malone to be declared dead so he could join a covert ops team as a new man- one Noah "Wild Card" Blake. (DING DING! We have a title!)

One problem- Nathan is married. And though his love for his wife, Bella, kept him chaste while being tortured under Fuentes, he didn't believe for one second his soft-hearted wife could handle the hardened man Noah has become.

Only Bella isn't as soft as he thinks. For though it almost killed her when she lost him, she did eventually manage to pull not only herself together but also her husband's all but defunct auto mechanic business.

Up until now Noah has ruthlessly excised his former existence from his life- when his uncle gave him reports on Bella, he trashed them satisfied with the knowledge she was alive and well.

Things change when Noah's uncle lets him in on some bad things going down in his hometown. A mysterious militia group is targeting illegal immigrants and are now focusing on Noah's garage as well as Bella.

Noah can't resist the mission because, of course, Bella still owns his soul and he's can't fight the urge to protect her. When he returns, riding into town on his Harley with a new hardened visage, Bella has no idea it's the husband she's grieved for these many years. But something about him reawakens a part of her she thought lost forever and though she feels she's betraying her late husband, she finds herself helplessly falling for him.

Of course they eventually bust the Militia ring but not before they both learn what they thought they knew of each other is nothing like what they truly are!

I LOVED Nathan/Noah. Sure he's a jerk for letting the wife he supposedly still loved and longed for believe he was dead for 6 years- but hey, some guys just have no faith in the inner strength of a woman! And too, Sabella Malone hid her spine of steel from him. (She's was young when they got married, and stupid enough to believe that a wilting hothouse flower of a wife was what her in-control husband needed.)

Personally I liked the changed Bella and Nathan much more than their earlier persona's. They were much more intense and, hooooo boy, when they get together again? The pages sizzle with heat!

Yep it's a scorcher, but it also has an almost poignant tenderness about it that will melt the heart of any romantic reader out there!

This one gets a 4.5 out of 5 from me. The editor on this one- AGAIN- needs their hands slapped- different times whole sections were repeated like it was copy and pasted from later in the book and then forgotten to be deleted from it's original spot- but I easily overlooked it because I enjoyed this couple so much!
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