Lynn Spencer's Reviews > The Longest Night

The Longest Night by Cindy Dees
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bookshelves: dnf

I have liked Dees' military romance in the past, so I had high hopes of reading this for TBR Challenge but I finally had to give up.

Here's the basic set-up: Military sniper Jake Harrington is sent to St. George in the Caribbean island nation of Gavarone to take out a crime kingpin who was thought to have been killed 5 years previously but turns out to still be alive. While there, he needs to set up in a condo with a good line of sight to the bad guy's lair - said condo turns out to be rented by Shannon McMahon, an American schoolteacher.

So far, so good. However, once the story really gets cranking, it just got too crazy as well as too emotionally uncomfortable for me to keep on going. One of the first things we learn about Shannon is that she was the victim of a horrible crime and that she has fled to Gavarone so that she can be totally off the radar when her assailant gets out of prison. Gavarone is not the world's safest place and it's on the verge of civil war, but I could still buy someone hiding out there. Or, at least I could buy it until we learn later on in the story that (view spoiler).

And then there's the interplay between Jake and Shannon. Shannon is the more obviously vulnerable character, with her history as a survivor of violent crime and her obvious discomfort around Jake and men in general. The storyline forces Shannon to come face to face with her demons by living in close proximity with Jake, pretending to be romantically involved with him, etc... It didn't feel romantic, but instead made me cringe for her. I didn't read far enough into the book to see whether there's magical trauma-healing sex but I sure hope not.

Jake's trauma is more hidden, but we learn over the course of the story that he had an absolutely horrific upbringing which ultimately led to him becoming a sniper because it was something he was good at. He could be perfectly still and he could lock down all of his emotional responses. I can see where a story focused on healing could be appealing, but I have to admit that I personally had a lot of trouble reading about Jake's memories of killing, his ability to almost flip a switch in his mind and become extraordinarily violent, etc... In such a short format book taking place over such a compressed time period, I just had trouble believing in the level of change that would be needed for him.

Ultimately, I bailed close to the 50% mark.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
January 7, 2019 – Shelved
January 7, 2019 – Shelved as: dnf

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