Nico (Ruin & Revenge #1) by Sarah Castille

Series:
Narrator: Aiden Snow
Source: Tantor Audio

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Title: Nico by Sarah Castille
Series: Ruin & Revenge #1
Release Date: December 27, 2016
Format: Audiobook (11 hrs 19 mins)
Genre: Romance, Mafia Romance
Published By: Tantor Audio

In , Las Vegas Mafia boss Nico Toscani is used to getting what he wants, whether it is having the City of Sin under his rule or a beautiful woman in his bed. But when he meets his match in the gorgeous, headstrong Mia Cordano, the daughter of a rival crime lord, all bets are off . . . Sexy computer hacker Mia struggles to break free of her ruthless father’s Mafia ties . . . but she can’t resist the powerful and seductive Nico, who will stop at nothing to possess her. With their families locked in a brutal war for control of the city, Mia and Nico enter into a forbidden game. Will they surrender to the passion that burns between them and risk tearing apart their families? Or will Nico be forced to betray the only woman who sets his blood on fire?

four-half-stars

This story was well developed, well written and completely engrossing. The narrator, Aiden Snow, nailed the voices of the main characters with an authentic Italian accent. His voice was a perfect complement to the entertaining writing of Sarah Castille.

Mia Cordano is a mafia princess but she wants nothing to do with the life. Mia’s father is obsessed with power and he has lined up a marriage for his daughter that will gain him an alliance with more power. Mia attempts to rebel against her father’s decree and begins making a life as a hacker. When it’s clear that Mia can’t escape her father’s arranged marriage, Mia find a champion in Nico Toscano. Nico is a Capo who wants revenge against his Uncle and all those who had a hand in the murder of his parents. Marrying Mia will create an alliance between the Toscano and the Cordano family. When Mia and Nico sneak off and marry subverting Don Cordano’s plan, the Cordanos vow revenge. Now Nico and Mia have to navigate the treacherous mafia world while fighting a growing attraction to each other. In the end, will love win over family loyalty and revenge?

I really enjoyed Mia as a heroine because she did not relish the role of being a mafia princess nor did she glamorize it in her head. She had a good grasp on what she wanted out of life as well as a husband even though she was forced to marry Nico Toscano to escape a worse fate.
The evolution of Mia and Nico’s relationship was gratifying to witness. She had a good sense of herself and so did Nico, who was looking for his place in the mob world. I like that Nico and Mia’s relationship wasn’t instantaneous, instead the author slowly developed their relationship. It added authenticity to the love they eventually found.

This book is one of the best written mafia romances I’ve read in a long time. The characters and the plot were commendably developed and the entire listening experience was so enjoyable. There was action, suspense, sex, love and drama. The only thing missing for me was a little more emotional angst given the environment the main characters existed in. Still, I found this book to be in the top echelon of mafia romances and I am anticipating an awesome series.

Ezi

Fire Bound (Sea Haven, #5) by Christine Feehan @LibraryThing

Series:
Narrator: carol monda
three-stars
Fire Bound Book Cover Fire Bound
Sea Haven #5
Christine Feehan
Romance; Paranormal Romance; Urban Fantasy
Recorded Books
April 26th, 2016
audibook
13 hrs and 26 mins

Flame-haired Lissa Piner is a skilled glass blower whose delicate gift conceals a burning inner strength that can destroy as exquisitely as it can create. Commissioned to design chandeliers for a string of luxury hotels, her remarkable skills have taken her to Italy. But Lissa’s real mission there is a secret. For her entire life has been a lie, leading to a chance to avenge a terrible wrong.

Enlisted as her bodyguard is Casmir Prakenskii, a trained assassin living off the grid. In Lissa, he sees a kindred spirit—something unexpected and wicked, mysterious and sensual. But more than desire is about to bring them together: because both of their pasts cry out for revenge. And for two people with this many secrets, this much passion, and this many enemies, someone is bound to get burned.

Carol Monda was my least favorite narrator in this series. She didn’t quite capture the menacing tone of these highly trained yet controlled assassins.

I have been reading this series every month and this is why I tend to shy away from binge reading series. After a few books, this one was more of the same insta-love between a sister of the heart and a Prakenskii. All the other ones didn’t annoy me like this one, but the romance didn’t move me that much.

Lissa Piner was a sister that I didn’t know much about in terms of her special ability. She was definitely a leader and trusted voice amongst her sisters but I didn’t know what element she wielded until the book title.

When Lissa goes off on a secret mission, the Prakenskii brothers sent one of Their own, Casmir, to shadow her from a distance.
If you have read the books before then you know what comes next between those two.

The more interesting part of the story was Lissa’s background and the role it still played in her actions. That mystery and subsequentl revelation was the intrigue plot that kept me listening to this book.

Overall, I enjoyed the story but I would like the heroes to work a little harder to get the chick!

*Special Thanks to LibraryThing for the CD given in exchange for an honest review.
description

Blog Tour – Undercover Boyfriend by Jacob Z. Flores

 

 

Undercover Boyfriend 
(One Fine Day Series #1)
by Jacob Z. Flores
 
Blurb:
Two men, one lie, and a whole bunch of trouble.
Marty Valdez is in serious trouble. His sister’s wedding is around the corner, and everyone expects to meet Marty’s super-successful underwear model boyfriend—whom Marty invented. Now Marty has to produce a half-naked hottie or suffer the worst humiliation of his life.
FBI agent Luke Myers is in serious trouble. He’s been working undercover to take down a dangerous drug cartel, but his cover’s blown and he needs to disappear. Luckily, a geeky yet intriguing comic book artist gives him the perfect opportunity. Luke just has to pretend to be his boyfriend, and pretending is what he does best. But between Marty’s mother and his ex, Luke might’ve bitten off more than he can chew, and Marty’s knack for finding trouble might ruin more than just his sister’s wedding.
Release Date
Wednesday, June 15, 2016 
Available for pre-order at
Available in paperback

 

         
Excerpt

 

About The Author
Jacob Z. Flores lives a double life. During the day, he is a respected college English professor and mid-level administrator. At night and during his summer vacation, he loosens the tie and tosses aside the trendy sports coat to write man on man fiction, where the hard ass assessor of freshmen level composition turns his attention to the firm posteriors and other rigid appendages of the characters in his fictional world.
 Summers in Provincetown, Massachusetts, provide Jacob with inspiration for his fiction. The abundance of barely clothed man flesh and daily debauchery stimulates his personal muse.
 When he isn’t stroking the keyboard, Jacob spends time with his daughter. They both represent a bright blue blip in an otherwise predominantly red swath in south Texas.
You can find Jacob at
            

 Giveaway

 

Presented By

Undercover Boyfriend by Jacob Z. Flores

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

UndercoverBoyfriendLGUndercover Boyfriend by Jacob Z. Flores
Series: Dreamspun Desires, One Fine Day
Release Date: June 15, 2016
Pages: 236 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

A One Fine Day Novel

Two men, one lie, and a whole bunch of trouble.

Marty Valdez is in serious trouble. His sister’s wedding is around the corner, and everyone expects to meet Marty’s super-successful underwear model boyfriend—whom Marty invented. Now Marty has to produce a half-naked hottie or suffer the worst humiliation of his life.

FBI agent Luke Myers is in serious trouble. He’s been working undercover to take down a dangerous drug cartel, but his cover’s blown and he needs to disappear. Luckily, a geeky yet intriguing comic book artist gives him the perfect opportunity. Luke just has to pretend to be his boyfriend, and pretending is what he does best. But between Marty’s mother and his ex, Luke might’ve bitten off more than he can chew, and Marty’s knack for finding trouble might ruin more than just his sister’s wedding.

four-half-stars

I think this might just be my favorite from the Dreamspun Desires series. I cannot stop smiling and going over all my highlights from the book and I have found a new author whose backlist I need to stalk, like now.

Let me attempt to make this short and sweet. Don’t look like that, I can do it… maybe?

Marty is a man who has a knack for spinning tall tales about folks that don’t exist to make his life just a tad bit easier. When he needs a date for his sister’s wedding events to get his mom off his back and to show his ex that he too has moved on to bigger and better men, Marty is in a bind because his current boyfriend, Tim is only a figment of Marty’s over active and extremely vivid imagination.

OMG! Marty is one hell of a crack up. From the first word we get from him I adored him. The meet cute with Luke was ridiculously adorable and the follow up had me laughing out loud at my desk because, well it was funny as all heck.

I love the fake boyfriend trope! It’s one of my favorites and it always leads to the best moments when the fake fades and the real is all that matters.

…who was this man his father’s lucky coin had brought to him?

Luke, Luke, Luke… LUKE.. where do I begin with you? I adored Luke in so many ways. He is this big strong, super smart and talented FBI Agent who meets his match in Marty. I loved that being in Luke’s line of work, meeting someone like Marty who is inherently good kind of knocks his socks off and makes him take notice. His instinct to trust Marty and Marty’s to trust him made the the romance so much fun to read. I love a good long slow burn of a relationship but I am a girl who moved in with her now husband after 1.5 months of “dating” so I get that you can fall hard and fast and have it last a life time.

I love that this is all a matter of being in the right place at the right time. Sure, there lies/secrets a plenty in this story but they are cleared up pretty quick and we get down to the fun banter and super sweet moments with these two men as they let down their guard and become stronger because they have crossed paths.

Marty’s family is wacky and yet so supportive and loving of one another. The way Marty’s mom grills Luke as Tim to make sure he is okay for her son was endearing. The fact that Sophia, Marty’s amazing and hilarious sister, stirs up trouble with “Tim’s” occupation had me laughing out loud again but really, his family is what those of us without familial ties wish for; to be loved and supported for being your true self.

This was full of tropey goodness with a bit of action tossed in. Crispy was a great side character and the mystery around the lies was fun as it all unraveled and you wondered who really the target of the bad guys was.

But what makes this my favorite is not just the sexy and sweet romance but the witty banter between Luke and Marty and Marty and his family. I love to laugh and this had me grinning, snorting and cracking up time after time all while knowing everyone would be okay in the end.

Oh and that end??? Shut. The. Front. Door. because that kind of romantic gesture needs to be kept under a lock and hidden away for Luke and Marty because it was Happily Ever After perfection.

One last thing, this is in the Dreamspun Desire series but also listed as part of another series that I am kind of more than curious about. Do we get more of these two or more of…. I need to know!

About Jacob Z. Flores

Jacob Z. Flores lives a double life. During the day, he is a respected college English professor and mid-level administrator. At night and during his summer vacation, he loosens the tie and tosses aside the trendy sports coat to write man on man fiction, where the hard ass assessor of freshmen level composition turns his attention to the firm posteriors and other rigid appendages of the characters in his fictional world.

Summers in Provincetown, Massachusetts, provide Jacob with inspiration for his fiction. The abundance of barely clothed man flesh and daily debauchery stimulates his personal muse. When he isn’t stroking the keyboard, Jacob spends time with his daughter. They both represent a bright blue blip in an otherwise predominantly red swath in south Texas.

Kingpin (An Italian Mafia Romance #1) by W.S. Greer @EJBookPromos

Kingpin (An Italian Mafia Romance #1) by W.S. Greer @EJBookPromosSeries: Italian Mafia Romance #1
on April 30th 2016
Pages: 254
AmazonB&N
Alannah Sullivan met Dominic Collazo when she was only in the fifth grade. She knew him when the other kids called him names and made fun of his over-sized facial features. She knew him when he was a shy introvert with a quick temper. She knew him when he was first introduced to the mob lifestyle by his father, a made man in the St. Louis mafia. Alannah knew Dominic before anybody could see his potential, and she fell in love with him when she was just a teenager... just in time for her family to pack up and move away from the city and the boy she loved.

But, Alannah is back now, and after ten long years, Dominic Collazo is all grown up. No longer the quiet loner, Dominic is larger than life, and every woman’s fantasy. He’s a rich casino owner with the looks of a Greek god, and an alpha male persona to die for. He’s also a captain in the notorious Giordano crime family.

When the two of them meet again in the lobby of Lumiere Place Casino & Hotel, Alannah has no idea that her second chance with Dominic will also be her biggest curse. As drama immediately ensues and bullets start to fly, Alannah has to ask herself if Dominic is worth all the trouble that comes with him.

Would you risk everything to be with the love of your life, even if he’s the mafia’s newest KINGPIN?
four-stars

I liked this book even though it lacked the usual angst that I love in these kinds of Mafioso romance.
Dominic Giovanni Collazo was shunned by his classmates and they tormented him by calling him “ugly Dominic”. When Alannah Sullivan arrived at his school, Dominic felt protective of her especially since the same kids were making fun of her as the new girl. It’s a new school half way into her fifth grade year, but Alannah was no stranger to starting over. After all, she has moved around a bit due to her father’s station in the military.
Dominic and Alannah struck up a friendship and were able to be safe place for each other. I love the time the author spend laying a foundation for young love. At the same time, we got to see the events that shaped Dominic’s life, which allowed us to understand his need for respect and dominance.

Alannah’s father gets transferred again, and the high school students get separated.
It’s been ten years since Dominic and Alannah last saw each other and now the 25 year olds are reunited. They have to learn each other again but the pace of the story moves much faster and it is also darker. It went from high school bullying to outright mob violence. Alannah has grown up with a certain value system as her father was an Air Force officer and Dominic’s new role in the Mob doesn’t quite fit into those beliefs and ethics. So it is a hard adjustment for them as they clearly love each other. The problem is now figuring out whether what they feel for each other is strong enough to withstand Dominic’s lifestyle.

I though the author did a really good job telling this story using a dual POV style. The writing was more suspenseful and less anguish in the second half. But there was definitely passion and emotion but the actual mob part of the story was as central as the romance. The balance of both made this story even more powerful and genuine. I felt like I understood where both characters were coming from. I liked Alannah because she wasn’t weak and pathetic. She just had so much love for the boy and man who had been her everything from age 10. Dominic was also likable because his youth shaped his need for respect and strength. His father was such an instrumental part of his life that it’s clear to see how he arrived to this point in his life. This was a solid beginning to really interesting story. I look forward to seeing where the author takes us on phase two of Alannah and Dominic’s journey.

*I received this book in exchange for an honest review*

Last Kiss (Hitman #3) by Jessica Clare & Jen Frederick

Last Kiss (Hitman #3) by Jessica Clare & Jen FrederickSeries: Hitman #3
on May 5th 2015
Pages: 346
AmazonNarrator: Iggy Toma, Kasha Kensington
Naomi: When I was kidnapped I thought only of survival. I don’t thrive well in chaos. That’s why I gave my captors exactly what they wanted: my skill with computers. Making millions for a crime lord who kept me imprisoned in his basement compound kept my family safe. When he was taken out, I thought my ticket to freedom had arrived. Wrong. I traded one keeper for another. This time I’m in the hands of a scarred, dark, demanding Russian who happens to be the head of the Bratva, a Russian crime organization. He wants my brain and my body. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t intrigued, but I can’t be a prisoner forever...no matter how good he makes me feel.

Vasily: At a young age, I was taught that a man without power is a puppet for all. I’ve clawed—and killed—my way to the top so that it is my heel on their necks. But to unify the fractured organization into an undefeatable machine, I need a technological genius to help me steal one particular artifact. That she is breathtaking, determined, and vulnerable is making her more dangerous than all of my enemies combined. But only I can keep her safe from the world that she now inhabits. Soon, I must choose between Naomi and Bratva law. But with every day that passes, this becomes a more impossible choice.
four-stars

What a pleasant surprise. I wasn’t sure I’d like this one because Naomi (aka the emperor) was quite discombobulated in book 2 when her brother Daniel finally found her. I wasn’t sure how she would work with the ruthless Vasily. But the author did it! I enjoyed them just as much as the other stories.

Naomi (Daniel’s younger sister) has Asperger’s syndrome and it renders her social inept.

According to Wikipedia: Asperger syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) that is characterized by significant difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication, alongside restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior and interests

The person is usually socially inept and get fixated or obsessive about certain issues and Naomi certainly had her quirks.

Vasily came to Daniel’s aid in book 2, only to take Naomi because she was one of the best cyber hackers they knew. Here in Book 3, Vasily was trying to institute himself as the new leader of the Petrovich. Bratva, and needed to prove his mettle as the top dog by finding a specific painting as required by the other Bratva members. Vasily had an idea of where it was but he needed the emperor’s hacking skills to pin point the exact location.

These two began searching all these den of iniquities to find the painting that would hand Vasily rule over the Bratva. Vasily and Naomi just worked! They were both quirky individuals and he seemed to take her OCD issues like a champ. I found their chemistry to be hot and really enjoyable. Naomi’s lack of filter cracked me up. She said things exactly as they were and from a detached literal perspective! Vasily was ruthless but he wasn’t without boundaries. He had a vision for a more progressive Bratva. I liked both characters individually and as a duo. The unconditional acceptance of each other, flaws and all, made this read so enjoyable.

I could have done without the donkey scene, but Naomi telling her brother Daniel about it was one of the funniest things I’ve read! I like that Naomi may have Asperger’s but she was so smart and resourceful. She made a great partner in crime for the Russian mobster.

The narrators did a great job making the characters endearing. Their voices allowed Vasily and Naomi to shine within the plot. I actually liked this book better than the one preceding it. Bravo! The author did it! I enjoyed them just as much as the other stories. The author really elevated her game with this installment. Now it’s time for book 4.

*Special Thanks to Tantor audio for the audiobook given in exchange for an honest review.

The Paper Swan by Leylah Attar @TantorAudio

The Paper Swan by Leylah Attar @TantorAudioon November 17, 2015
Pages: 390 pages
AmazonNarrator: Shirl Rae, Zachary Webber
They say it takes 21 days to form a habit.
They lie.
For 21 days she held on.
But on Day 22, she would have given anything for the sweet slumber of death.
Because on Day 22, she realizes that her only way out means certain death for one of the two men she loves.


A haunting tale of passion, loss, and redemption, The Paper Swan is a darkly intense yet heartwarming love story, textured with grit, intrigue, and suspense. Please note: This is NOT a love triangle.

A full-length, standalone novel, intended for mature audiences due to violence, sex and language. Subject matter may be disturbing for some readers.
three-stars

This book had few enjoyable moments for me as the Revenge portion lasted about 80% of the book and the Forgiveness portion the last 20%. I will give it credit to remaining real and gritty throughout most of the book. ★★★½ for the writing, ★★ for the characters.
cartel photo: las telenovelas y ele - cartel poseter-elcartel.jpg

The book starts with a kidnapping, which is quickly revealed a revenge plot. Damian Caballero is exacting revenge against the man who robbed him of a loved one using the eye-for-an-eye rationale. Damian kidnapped Skye Sedgewick, a pampered rich girl, whose father Damian blamed for his loss.

We soon learned that a decade or so ago, mob employee Warren Sedgewick made some hard choices for the protection and safety of his loved ones. In the same manner, his nanny Mama Lou made some choices to protect her young son and those decisions set events in motion pitting Damien against the mobsters for retribution.

I am sure many people ultimately had forgiveness for the brutal ways Damian went about to gain his pound of flesh. Maybe he was even justified but I had sympathy for the widow Warren Sedgewick. I had a hard time with Damian’s actions. As a parent, I felt that while as Warren made some selfish choices, I would wager that most parents make similar sacrifices when faced with real possibility of losing a child. Warren had already lost his wife to the life. Now, he was being threatened with his young daughter’s life. I am not sure what other choice he could have made.

I didn’t feel this consuming love between the characters as their initial relationship felt more like a sibling relationship to me. The time an attraction began to bloom was during the captor-captive situation, which made it feel more like Stockholm syndrome than romantic love.
Skye wasn’t a strong heroine to me, but I admire her courage to forgive. Damien went from an unfeeling criminal to in love with his captive after 1 week in a boat, which didn’t fit for such a scrupulous, grudging holding guy.
cartel photo: cartel 060804_cartel_santa_3.jpg

The pace of the story was a bit slow and but I did find that both characters grew up during the latter 25% of the book. Both Damien and Skye ended up letting go of their pain and anger, which gave way to redemption. They made consistent efforts to rebuild their lives, but aid others to have a safe haven and an out from criminal life.

I think the author did a realistic portrayal of how people hold on to pain and anger. A lot of times finding love doesn’t erase past hurts. So I thank the author for not being predictable and making Damian go soft overnight. In the end, while I was pleased with the happy ending. I wasn’t engaged to the story as I felt part of my empathy was cut off like finger during the initial kidnapping.

Special thanks to Tantor Audio for the audiobook, which was given in exchange for an honest review

Nine Minutes (Nine Minutes #1) by Beth Flynn

Nine Minutes (Nine Minutes #1) by Beth FlynnSeries: Nine Minutes #1
on July 19th 2014
Pages: 326 pages
AmazonNarrator: Monique Makena
RECOMMENDED FOR READERS 18 AND OLDER DUE TO STRONG LANGUAGE, SEXUAL SITUATIONS AND VIOLENCE.

Book 1 in the Nine Minutes Trilogy.

On May 15, 1975, fifteen-year-old Ginny Lemon is abducted from a convenience store in Fort Lauderdale by a member of one of the most notorious and brutal motorcycle gangs in South Florida.

From that moment on, her life is forever changed. She gets a new name, a new identity and a new life in the midst of the gang’s base on the edge of the Florida Everglades—a frightening, rough and violent world much like the swamps themselves, where everyone has an alias and loyalty is tantamount to survival.

And at the center of it all is the gang’s leader, Grizz: massive, ruggedly handsome, terrifying and somehow, when it comes to Ginny, tender. She becomes his obsession and the one true love of his life.

So begins a tale of emotional obsession and manipulation, of a young woman ripped from everything she knows and forced to lean on the one person who provides attention, affection and care: her captor. Precocious and intelligent, but still very much a teenager, Ginny struggles to adapt to her existence, initially fighting and then coming to terms with her captivity.

Will she be rescued? Will she escape? Will she get out alive—or get out at all? Part psychological thriller, part coming-of-age novel, filled with mystery, romance and unexpected turns, Nine Minutes takes readers into the world of one motorcycle gang and inside the heart of a young girl, whose abduction brought about its fall.
three-half-stars

I don’t know how to rate this book nor what to say. I am not sure I even liked it but I’m so engrossed that I finished the audiobook in 2 days. Then I quickly got book 2. It’s not the writing, it’s not the characters..maybe it is both. I didn’t dislike Ginny because she was just trying to exist. I just don’t find that Stockholm syndrome to really be “love” as there isn’t consent and there is an amount of brainwashing. This book was the journey of a kidnap victim turned wife of the leader of a motorcycle gang. All these things happening before age 16. The book begins with the trial of her husband kidnapper, the unapologetic and ruthless Grizz.

There was a lot of deceit in this truly complex story. There was statutory rape and generally stalking. But there was a make shift family and loyalty…as much as you can have in a criminal enterprise. So I was intrigued, curious and engrossed with the train wreck effect. I want to find out who Grunt really is because the ending made the nice guy appear to be much more sinister and cunning than I gave him credit to. This triangle with Grizz, Ginny and Grunt wasn’t as clean as I thought.

The fact that I wanted to read book two immediately means that I must like it a little bit, right?

*Special thanks to Tantor Audio for the audiobook, which was given in exchange for an honest review.

‘Til Death – Part 1 by Bella Jewel

‘Til Death – Part 1 by Bella JewelSeries: 'Til Death, #1
on November 25, 2014
Pages: 796
AmazonNarrator: Lidia Dornet, Roger Wayne
They say there's a fine line between love and hate.

There is.

I fell in love with a monster.
He used me. He destroyed me. He made a fool out of me.
I didn’t know it at the start. You never do.
You think you have found the man of your dreams. You think nothing could break you apart.
How wrong you are.
I loved Marcus Tandem with everything that was me.
To him, I was just a business deal, a way to keep something he’d worked hard for.
He never had any intentions of returning my affections.
He never wanted me in his life.
But I wanted him in mine.
When you fall in love with the devil, you expect to get burned.
Marcus burned me. He consumed me. He devastated me.
Somewhere inside, I knew he was no good. I just prayed having me in his life might be enough.
I hold onto that small hope, that maybe, just maybe, somewhere deep down in his soul, he might love me too.
Someday.

I’m surprised that I enjoyed this one as much because the story wasn’t really unique. However, the writing hooked me and I wasn’t able to stop listening to the book until the cliff hanger ending.
Marcus Tandem started off as a self-centered man seeking to achieve his professional goals at all costs. One of the caveats to Marcus’ accession to the business he has worked tirelessly to build was marriage for a period of no less than two years. Marcus the predator homes in on Katia, and charms her into marrying him. But Katia wasn’t in it for the money and the more Marcus got to know Katia, the harder it got to continue deceiving her. The author did a great job showing Marcus’s inner conflict.

Katia was a character easy to like due to her down to earth personality. She worked for her own keep and she was loyal. The narrator made this book more enjoyable because she infused Katia with joy and energy. I felt like I’d like to hang out with Katia. She didn’t push Marcus, but she didn’t play ostrich either. She picked her battles and I just wanted her to catch a break.

I am definitely getting book 2 shortly because I am his invested in how Marcus and Katia saved their marriage.

Special Thanks to Tantor Media for the audiobook review copy

 

Review: Do or Die (Reluctant Heroes, Book 1) by Suzanne Brockmann

Review: Do or Die (Reluctant Heroes, Book 1) by Suzanne BrockmannSeries: Reluctant Heroes #1
on February 4th, 2014
Pages: 577
Amazon
Navy SEAL Ian Dunn went rogue in a big way when he turned his talents to a lawless life of jewel heists and con jobs. Or so the world has been led to believe. In reality, the former Special Ops warrior is still fighting for good, leading a small band of freelance covert operatives who take care of high-stakes business in highly unofficial ways. That makes Ian the hands-down choice when the U.S. government must breach a heavily guarded embassy and rescue a pair of children kidnapped by their own father, a sinister foreign national willing to turn his own kids into casualties. Shockingly, Ian passes on the mission... for reasons he will not–or cannot–reveal.

But saying no is not an option. Especially not to Phoebe Kruger, Ian’s bespectacled, beautiful, and unexpectedly brash new attorney. Determined to see the abducted children set free, she not only gets Ian on board but insists on riding shotgun on his Mission: Impossible-style operation, whether he likes it or not.

Though Phoebe has a valuable knack for getting out of tight spots, there’s no denying the intensely intimate feelings growing between Ian and Phoebe as the team gears up for combat. But these are feelings they both must fight to control as they face an array of cold-blooded adversaries, including a vindictive mob boss who’s got Ian at the top of his hit list and a wealthy psychopath who loves murder as much as money. As they dodge death squads and play lethal games of deception, Ian and Phoebe will do whatever it takes to save the innocent and vanquish the guilty.

Or die trying
four-stars

I think I would have gave this book a 5-star if I had listened to the audiobook…and if I had already read the Troubleshooter series before hand.

Ian Dunn, a former Navy Seal, is serving an 18-month sentence on a murder charge when he gets a deal–Help the government rescue the kidnapped kids of a nuclear physicist and he can get the rest of his sentence commuted, provided he can deliver the kids unharmed.
The deal is delivered via a fed attorney and Ian’s new attorney Phoebe Kruger, even though Ian never hired her.
Ian doesn’t trust the deal so he turns them down, but someone how his released is arranged and Ian is sprung from the slammer, endangering Ian’s family.

See Ian purposefully went to prison, to hide and to protect his younger brother Aaron. Now that he has been relesed, the people he was hiding from can come after them. Ian has to rely on his military training to get his family to safety, and figure out the leak in the Feds, and rescue the kidnapped kids. A big picture with a lot of subplots made for an action packed book.

This is my first Suzanne Brockmann book and I enjoyed it. The hero Ian was definitely an alpha male, but he was sexy and confident. He was also witty and very protective. I also like Phoebe as she wasn’t a wilting flower. She held her own and was a good heroine. She gave as good as she got when she was bantering with Ian.

If you like stories featuring the mob, government and espionage, this is it a good book for that all that

*Thank you to Random House via Netgalley for the e-book copy**