Reviewed by Helyce
This story starts off with a bang when our heroine, Maxi, awakens to find herself outside her home and under the stars near the pond on her property, with no memory of how she got there. Understandably freaked out, she walks back to her house, grabs her keys, and drives away as fast as she can. The only person she can think of to help her is Miles Dartman, a man she’d met a few months ago who told her he worked for the Body Armor security agency. She decides that with all the weird and unexplained things going on at her place, a body-guard might be exactly what she needs.
Miles arrives at Body Armor headquarters and walks into his boss Sahara’s office to find Maxi sitting there. She looks like she’s been through hell, but he still gets that shock to his gut at seeing her again after she blew him off a few months back. Maxi relays what happened that night and what’s been happening to her since she inherited her grandmother’s place. Miles is both confused and thrilled that Maxi sought him out to help her. When they’d met a few months back, he thought they had great chemistry and was hoping that a relationship was forming, but all of a sudden Maxi was gone just as fast as she’d appeared.
Foster changes it up a bit, by giving us two characters who have a history with each other. Miles and Maxi had hooked up a few times-and though the no-strings-attached sex Maxi offered to Miles might have been every man’s dream, Miles was falling for Maxi more and more each time they were together. He was sure Maxi felt it too, and he’d wanted more, wanted to see where they might go with it, but Maxi left with no explanation. He hadn’t seen her for months and is shocked when she shows up looking for a body-guard.
I wasn’t sure about Maxi at first, but she quickly grew on me with her intelligence and headstrong ways. The youngest of three children, she felt like the black sheep of the family. Her brother and sister both appeared highly successful while she was a personal shopper with two failed relationships under her belt. The latter made her distrust herself and her decisions where men were concerned and was part of the reason she’d approached Miles for a last hurrah no strings affair before moving into her grandmother’s home after she died.
I liked Miles. He wasn’t so overblown with the he-man protector mode, and he quickly learned that Maxi was very capable, while knowing her limitations and knowing when she needed help. Foster gives us time in both Maxi and Miles’s head so we are clear how they feel about each other. Miles wants more as does Maxi but each is waiting for the other to make the first move.
This caused the story to drag a little for me and may be why I felt the ‘romance’ fell flat with these two. I’m a fan of second chance love and this kind of falls into that category, but it felt like we spent a lot of time in their heads while they mulled over how much they wanted each other and very little time with them actually getting to that point. I’m not talking about sex scenes, there are……a few. The pieces of a blossoming relationship were all there, but I felt they just struggled to come together. I never got to the point where I felt like, “OMG these two are just so good together.” While I’m a huge, huge fan of Ms. Foster, I understand that I’m not going to love every single book.
The suspense part of this story was played out well. When I read suspense, I always try to figure out who did it based on the hints the authors appears to throw. I also like when I’m wrong, because for me, that shows a well done, thought out, mystery. I was so sure I knew what was going on and who was responsible for all of Maxi’s troubles, then changed my mind along the way and was still wrong when all is revealed.
What I do love about Lori Foster is her brilliant ability to connect her series together. This current series links to her previous Love Undercover and Ultimate series and I really appreciate that she does this because once I fall for these characters it is so fun to revisit them in secondary character roles. She gifts us with several of the previous couples/characters who all come to help out at Maxi’s when trouble is brewing. We also get a to see Sahara, Body Armor’s owner extraordinaire, in a bit of a more casual light and I enjoyed seeing her this way. I’m pretty sure she gets the next book, so I’m really looking forward to that.
Good story, believable suspense plot, but sadly a bit lacking in romance department.