|An exciting new series featuring Mike "Primetown" Brown, a character from her popular "Black Ops, Inc." series. |
For the seven years after Operation Slam Dunk went south, Mike Brown got drunk on each anniversary. The eighth year was no different--until he was drugged by a woman and woke up to her questions about what had happened eight years ago in Afghanistan. CIA attorney Eva Salinas has her own theory behind what happened to Mike's team--which included her husband--in Afghanistan eight years ago, and she's determined to prove foul play. Though she doesn't trust him, Mike is the only person she can turn to for help. Under an assumed name, Eva convinces Mike to assemble a new team and go after the traitor who screwed up both their lives. As they track down the rogue who started it all, Eva and Mike discover they can't live without each other. But can they stay alive while an enemy is still on the loose?
Mike Brown has been living in the past for 8 years. He can’t let go, he can’t forget, his life as he knew it ended 8 years ago during a mission gone horribly wrong. The blame landed squarely on his innocent shoulders, but he took it. He took a deal that ended his military career and the careers of his two (former) best friends, the only other men on his team who survived. Mike didn’t have it in him to fight and he’s trying to live the lonely life he has now, but it’s not going too well for him.
Enter Eva Salinas. She has a personal connection to that mission gone wrong, Operation Slam Dunk. Everything she was told that had happened is a lie and she was handed classified documents by an unknown person, detailing out everything that happened that night. She wants answers and she tracks Mike down demanding them. They form an uneasy alliance when it’s made perfectly clear that Eva is digging up details that someone wants to remain buried and her life is on the line. Her passion to find out the truth slowly starts to get to Mike and he joins the fight, finally. He finally has something to fight for, he wants to know the truth, he wants to clear his name and more importantly his friends’ names and he wants the men responsible to pay. Eva, God love her, charges right in from chapter 1, fires up the story, fires up Mike and gets the ball rolling on an investigation that has them flying from coast to coast, going undercover and getting help from our favorite team, Black Ops Inc.
“What? You expect me to tell you I’m sorry for dragging you into this? Well, that’s not happening. You’ve been in it from the beginning.”
“I’ve been out of it for eight years, thank you very much.”
“No, you’ve been hiding out. Big difference. Grow a pair, Brown. It’s past time.”
I’m a huge fan of Cindy Gerard’s and I love how she always manages to gives a great mix of alpha hero, a completely kick ass heroine and a suspense storyline that brings in new faces, familiar faces and always a bad guy that needs to be taken down in the end. The romance between Mike and Eva takes off on page 1 when Mike puts his drunk moves on Eva, who’s only goal is to get answers. They go from enemies, to holding each other hostage, to an uneasy truce and finally realizing that more intense feelings between them have developed in the middle of all the madness. Their romance is a bit of a whirlwind, the entire story takes place over the course of about a week. Normally, this isn’t something that works for me, but the entire scope of the story felt like it was taking place over more time and that helped make the romance work. Plus, they’re just damn sexy together. Mike and his humor, Eva and her unwillingness to just sit on the sidelines, she puts herself out there right beside Mike and I loved that about her. For as much as Mike tries to hide, he really does wear his emotions on his sleeve. With Eva, he breaks down remembering the horrible night he lost so many friends, but he starts to live life again and with Eva’s help and a little push, he tries to mend the bond between friends he hasn’t talked to in eight years, Taggart and Cooper. The sex between Mike and Eva isn’t front and center, it never really is in Gerard’s books, but the emotion is off the charts and I loved seeing this couple come together. I especially loved seeing Eva’s influence on Mike and how it changes his life for the better.
The suspense is completely centered around what went down eight years ago on that mission gone wrong and how far the reach is, from Afghanistan back to America, and there ends up being more than one big player that Mike and company need to bring down. Mike needs help and he calls in a favor from one of my favorite heroes, Joe Green (Last Man Standing). This leads to a very pleasant surprise, the amount of page time we get with Gabe Jones (Show No Mercy). I loved his presence in this story for a couple reasons. One, it’s Gabe. He could pop up randomly in any book and I’d be happy. But it really helped to create a connection from the Black Ops Inc men to the men making up the One-Eyed Jacks. For as much as I loved getting to know Mike, Taggart and Cooper, it was still nice to have Gabe and Joe be a part of the story. And who knows, with the direction this new series takes at the end, we may get to see more crossovers between both teams.
He’d done a lot of stupid things in his life. Some he’d thought about. Some he hadn’t. But as they stood there with Jenna’s flowers all around them and the sky doing its moonlight and madness thing above them…[H]e quit thinking about the fact that she’d [Eva] drugged and shanghaied him.
He only thought about how much he wanted to kiss her. How much he needed a connection to someone. No, a connection to her. Someone who had lost as much as he had.
It had been a long time since a woman had needed him. A long time since he’d wanted one to. But he wanted to be important to her, strong for her, and even weak for her so she would understand how much she was giving him in return.
The story came completely alive when Taggart and Cooper came on page. They had me laughing and so very interested in finding out more about who these men are, and what they’ve been doing for the past eight years.
This was a great start to a new series, bringing us more alpha heroes and the woman who are their matches in every way. Mike and Eva are a strong couple, fierce and I enjoyed following them on their journey. As is usually the case with Gerard’s books, I’m left with a happy sigh at the end and anxious to get more.
Release Date: January 22, 2013
Publisher: Pocket Books
Cindy Gerard: Webpage | Facebook | Twitter
Buy Here: Amazon.com | B&N
*ARC provided by publisher for review*