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Impossible Promise

(Unchecked #1)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  276 ratings  ·  59 reviews
Three years ago, Layna Blair listened in horror over a telephone line as her parents were murdered. When the killer said she was next, Layna panicked and made a deadly deal—his secret in exchange for her life. She’s paid the price every day since, becoming a prisoner in plain sight.

Marine Sergeant Blaze Johnson offers Layna a way out—her freedom, his rules, no questions as
Kindle Edition, 276 pages
Published March 23rd 2015 by Carina Press
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Average rating 4.07  · 
Rating details
 ·  276 ratings  ·  59 reviews

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I tried 25%, but not feeling it for the main characters.
The heroine is all over the place, even from her POV, I don't know what the heck is she thinking.
I am torn by this book. I enjoyed reading it, I really did. But from the first time Layna meets Blaze, I just didn't buy the connection or his need to protect her. I enjoyed the action part of the story line immensely, however the romance aspect felt seriously forced. Blaze was NEVER there, and honestly I didn't really know where Sybil Bartel was going with the whole Talon aspect. I wasn't sure is she was trying to bring in a menage trois aspect or if Layna was just a cheater. Honestly I found m ...more
Shireen  Hakani
1.5 Stars!

I disliked the h. She says she loves H but is always checking out the other guy (Talon). She is mouthy, irritating and mostly foolish. Yelling and pick up fights for no reason.

This book is waste of time.

Check out my other reviews at Little Miss Bookmark!

Now, this is the story all about how my life got flipped-turned upside down ... just kidding. I had you going, didn't I? That song is stuck in my head today. Anyway, Impossible Promise is about a woman named Layna who has been on the run from a faceless villain for three years. One day, she walks into a church (seemingly the only place where her henchmen stalkers will leave her alone) and kind of meets Blaze. Within the few seconds of their inte
Elizabeth (Liz)
Aug 05, 2017 rated it liked it
starting the follow-up it stands, I think she picked the wrong guy...we'll see if that changes....
Mar 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
RATING: 3.75

Love me some Sybil Bartel! Another fun read by one of my favorite people!

This is definitely an emotionally weighty read, in my opinion. There's a lot more to take in and a lot more to figure out. This story follows Layna Blair and her struggle to stay out of the hands of the people that killed her parents. She is constantly on the run, trying to protect herself, until she can't anymore. She meets the mystery Marine Sargeant, Blaze Johnson, who decides to involve himself in her fight
Paula  Phillips
Mar 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Have you ever come across a book that you read and it sticks with you , the storyline and the characters. For me, that was Impossible Promise and trust me readers, I wasn't expecting it to and to be completely honest I am not sure why it is still sticking in my head as it's not like the storyline was completely original or anything. I think it was the way that the story was written as the writing captivated me and made me not want to put the book down and the characters , I fell in love with Tal ...more
Heather / Obsessed With Myshelf
Buck is a complicated hero. One look at Layna and he's in - no questions asked. At least not right away. The attraction between them is instantaneous. You might even call it Instalove. The question is whether Layna can get rid of her past and break down Buck's walls to even get to the part where they can hope for the future.

On the whole, the book is good. It has a decent amount of action, the characters and scenes flow well and I didn't find the writing style to be off. However, I didn't fall f
This review originally appeared on BrizzleLass Books.

Oh my freaking God!

You know it’s kind of weird jumping all the way back to the beginning. I know ultimately how this story turns out because I’ve read all of the later books featuring other characters who are just on the periphery in this book but I just needed to read Blaze and Layna’s story and hot damn, is it lighting a few fires!

This is where it all starts, this is where the groundwork is first laid for all those guys I’ve already fallen f
Tina ( As Told By Tina )
Mar 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Original review can be found at Tina,The Bookworm

I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, this does not affect my review in any shape or form.

Imagine, you are sixteen on the phone with your parents probably rolling your eyes at whatever they just said and then you hear it. A voice, a chilling voice some arguing, some gunshots and you scream. The voice comes back on the phone threatening you, say a word and you’re dead too. He owns you now and you don’t even know his real name.

You can
Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
These guys!!!!!!!!

I probably should have started with these two books (yes don't judge me, the second book in this series is already waiting for me lol). But it does make for an interesting read seeing Talon, Neil , Graham and a host of the other guys here in this story. Especially since I've already read THEIR stories.
Melyssa Winchester

Title: Impossible Promise
Author: Sybil Bartel
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance, Suspense
Series or Standalone: Series (Unchecked #1)
Rating: 3.5 Stars (rounded to 4 for Goodreads & Amazon)



Impossible Promise is the first novel in the Unchecked Series by Sybil Bartel and is told from the point of view of the main character, Layna (Jennifer) and follows her life on the run from resident bad guy Miami and straight into the arms of Blaze (Buck).

Layna three years before found herself on the o
T.H. Hernandez
I was immediately sucked into Layna's story. It begins in a church where she escapes to find a moment of solitude -- something she desperately needs because she's constantly being watched, followed, and threatened, by the mysterious Miami. Blaze Johnson is the marine in the pew next to her -- a trained soldier who knows when someone is in need of help. The problem is, everyone who tries to help Layna winds up dead.

The book is fast-paced full of sexual as well as other tension, and builds to astr
Kristine Ruiz
Feb 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Layne is running and wedding in the world that is know her life, having geared her parents being murdered over the phone at a young age and heart g the killer, she knew she was intros le when they treated her life too. So she finished school as fast as she could and moved out of town to start her life in hidding and keeping her self closed off from others. Working dead end jobs to make sure no one gets close while being watched and reminded her life is always in danger. After a bad week and scum ...more
Apr 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book took me by surprise and didn’t let go till the very end! Impossible Promise takes you on a wild ride where you attempt to know which way is up and which path is the right one for Layna. This story has passion, intrigue, romance, and adrenaline pumping moments! I loved reading about Layna, Blaze, and Talon. This story was well developed and exciting!
I would like to preface this review one of the reasons this books surprised me. I am not a fan of love triangles and this story has a bit o
Feb 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgallery
When I looked at Impossible Promise to review I wasn't sure whether to go for it or not. The New Adult/Romance genre is flooded with books and at times it can feel like you are reading the same thing time and time again with a few name changes. However, I hadn't read a book with marines in for a while and the cover looked interesting, add to that this would be the first book I was reading by the author Sybil Bartel and I decided to go for it - I am so glad I did!

I read this book in an afternoon/
Mar 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
ARC generously provided by publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Layna has been captive by her parents murderer for the past three years. He watches her every move and controls her entire life. Layna dreams of an escape, but after hearing her parents being murdered over the phone line she has no doubts he will kill her in a heartbeat.

Then a marine, Sergean Blaze Johnson, enters her life. All he does is see her in church and he breaks down all her walls and can see right insid
Diaries of 2 Thick Chicks
Dec 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
The title Impossible Promise says it all about the storyline of this book because it is impossible to see where the story will eventually land and which character will win the girl. Sybil Bartel was first introduced to me with her first book, No Apologies, which I really loved so when I saw this one, I thought let me give it a shot.

While there are some fatal flaws with the book, the storyline is really engaging and I just couldn't get enough of Talon. As a secondary character, he rocked my worl
Kristen Johnson
Mar 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, blog-tour
Impossible Promise is basically a thrill a minute. From the start of the book, you know that you are about to embark on a wild adventure that will hopefully A) Give you some answers and B) push the main characters together because their initial attraction and chemistry is palpable.

Layna has lived her life everyday for the past 3 years essentially trapped. Having overheard something she should not have, she's been following another person's rules just to stay alive. Every day the weight of this
Mar 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
ARC provided by netgalley for an honest review. I loved the concept of the story. It was just what I needed to read. There was plenty of danger and a lot of wondering how did it happen. But the more you read the more you find out and it like I didn't see that coming. As for Layna some of the things she did annoyed the crap out of me and some of them she was funny and I loved her smart mouth she was sometimes funny. I really didn't feel a connection between her and Blaze. I thought she had more o ...more
The BookWhisperer
Jul 30, 2015 rated it liked it
Impossible Promises is a good sultry romance, and I found the back and forth between Layna and Blaze to be quite entertaining. Beware that this is a instalove kind of story, so for it will take a bit to accept the determination of a stranger to step into this obviously dangerous situation. Once I was over the shock and questioning of his motives I quickly fell for his character, and the alpha possessive nature he finds himself often overwhelmed with. I felt a tremendous amount of potential out o ...more
Apr 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I have to admit Sybil got me with this. How can a man not recognize when a female is running trying to keep herself safe? Even when she won't admit that she needs help. He and his friends protect her and start getting to the bottom of why she is running, but Blaze never expects to start falling in love with Layna....nor does she expect to fall in love with Blaze but Sybil did take my emotions for a rollercoaster ride! I can't wait to read book two!!!
Apr 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Can't wait for the next one

I really enjoyed this book, its one with a situation that I don't usually like (no spoilers) but I was so intrigued these are some seriously likable characters. I'm very excited about the next, so much happened its hard to put it down.
Jan 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Like all of Sybil's books, once you start you can not put it down. Her books are full of suspense, romance, mystery ... her stories are some of the best I've read and absolutely a favourite. I started with Thrust, then Talon and Neil. Now, I see that this book is the beginning. I was able read the others as stand alone but I can see a bit more enjoyment from reading at the beginning, so that's my plan, including rereading Talon and Neil (yes, they are that good). This story is about Blaze (Buck' ...more
4 stars. Ok this is a toughie. Firstly I really enjoyed the book with a good suspenseful storyline. This is where it gets a little tricky, the H/h and the instant attraction jsut didn't quite gel for me, maybe because it was all the heroine's POV you didn't really pick up on the intensity of feelings the Hero had for her and I found Talon a much more intricate and complex character. Saying that I totally understood the shifting emotions of the heroine, she is only 19 and has kept herself apart f ...more
Jul 03, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
I did not finish this book. I like the author’s style in other books I’ve read, but the reasons I couldn’t finish:

1. The whole story was written from one POV and the thoughts were all over the place.
2. The scenes were too volatile. The emotions were high in every scene and there was no breath so it made it annoying to read.
Sep 14, 2018 rated it liked it
i love the story. i will read the second book but i give 3 stars because i hate CHEATING! .
Nov 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: five-stars
Update. Tried it once more and finished the whole series in a couple of days. Great read!! Review consist of all three books.

See the last book.


Started it, but stopped because I knew going in it would be a long ride considering their story is spanned over two books. Can’t do a long one right now. Need something a bit easier.


I’m pausing it.

* A review copy was provided by the author via Netgalley for the Blog Tour *

~ 4 Just the Start Stars ~

Impossible Promise is the first book in a two book series by Sybil Bartel. To be honest I really enjoyed this story. I wanted to give it 5 stars, but I just couldn't because the author put two of my hard limits into the story. My biggest pet peeves are cheating and love triangles and the author included both of these in Buck (Blaze) and Layna's story. I still can't figure out why she did
Mar 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
3.5 to 4 stars

This story pretty much hits the ground running, jumping straight into the action to the point I had to double check the author's published works to see if I missed a prequel that gave background on how Layna got to this point in her life.

From the minute Blaze aka Buck lays eyes on her in the church where she is trying to gain a few moments of peace from the men following her every move for the last three years, his protective instincts kick into overdrive and he is dead set on keep
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Sybil grew up in Northern California with her head in a book and her feet in the sand. She used to dream of becoming a painter but the heady scent of libraries with their shelves full of books about wistful summer days and first loves drew her into the world of storytelling.

Sybil now resides in Southern Florida and while she doesn't get to read as much as she likes, she still buries her toes in t

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