Rating: 4.5 Stars
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for review from Author’s Pal and the author. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am posting this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising".
Full-time author, freelance writer and workshop facilitator, Julie Rowe’s debut novel, Icebound, was released by Carina Press on Nov 14, 2011. Ten novels and eight anthologies have followed. Her most recent titles are the MEN OF ACTION boxed set and VIRAL JUSTICE book #3 of the Biological Response Team series. Julie’s articles and short stories have appeared in numerous magazines, such as Romantic Times Magazine, Today's Parent magazine and Canadian Living. Julie facilitates business writing and communication workshops at Keyano College in her home city, and has presented writing workshops at conferences in the United States and Canada. She’s also a strong supporter of life long learning and moderates a free announcement loop for the promotion of online classes, workshops and webinars
About the Book:
About the Book:
Special Forces soldier and medic Walter River would give anything to snatch more than a few seconds of down time to see if he can rattle the no-nonsense and incredibly hot Dr. Lloyd he's protecting, but dodging explosions, snipers, and student radicals who've unleashed a lethal bio-engineered microorganism have made that almost impossible. Maybe he'll get a chance—if he can figure out how to keep them both alive.
CDC microbiologist Ava Lloyd races to find a cure for a bio-terrorism organism sweeping El Paso. The few stolen moments with her very hunky bodyguard River have been explosive, but no matter how alluring he is, she can't afford to get distracted. The clock is ticking, people are dying by the hundreds, and once this crisis is solved, they'll both be off on their next assignment, thousands of miles apart.
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Sgt. Walter River is put in a situation that I hope none of us will ever have to experience. He makes no excuses for how he talks or acts. I would certainly want him there should something happen to me. In this current place in time, I can’t say for certain that something like this couldn’t happen. I find it interesting how this comes out, as there’s a lot of terrorist activity happening lately. Adds a sense of realism to the story.
Dr. Ava Lloyd is in a situation not of her choosing. She’s a woman who seems to be able to hold her own. She appears to be good at keeping her cool in a tough situation. Loved the banter between these two characters that feeds into the beginning of a relationship.
I loved how the author included the time in the story. It helps us feel as if we’re in that moment of time. It reminds me of some shows on TV that would post a clock on the screen as you watch the episode unfold. It also creates a timeline for the set of events that are going down.
It’s sad to think how violent our world has become. It’s even sadder how what can be a work of fiction one minute could become our reality next. The saying used to be “you just can’t make this stuff up”. I don’t think we can say that anymore. This is one thing that makes this author so great. Her story and characters seem so real. I was all in with the action and suspense. For me, the romance was secondary. The author also reminded me of what I loved about the Andromeda Strain. I always thought there should have been a romance in there.
This was a great way to start the series. It piqued my interest and left me wondering how the author was going to top this in the next book. Having strong women characters is something I’ve come to love in a story – it shows how far romances have come since I first started reading them. And we have a male character that is willing to change. I loved that the ending was happy but left with questions, which may be a setup for the next story. It also left me wanting to read the author’s Biological Response Team series.
Ava covered his hand with hers, keeping it trapped against her soft skin. “Every time I think I understand you,” she whispered, “you go and say something that confuses the heck out of me.”
He shrugged, enjoying the feel of her under his hand in a way that satisfied something ravenous deep at his core. “I’m a simple soldier.”
She tilted her head to one side. “No,” she said slowly. “No, you’re not.” She leaned forward and kissed him.
River froze under her lips.
She’d certainly surprised herself. There’d been no internal dialogue or decision-making process, just a bone-deep, heart-deepneed for his touch she refused to deny herself. Not if things were as dangerous as River claimed they were.
And they were. So many sick. So many dead. With no end in sight.
She wanted him, wanted the pleasure, the care she knew he would give her, even if was just for an hour. It would hurt to see him walk away when all this was over, if they both survived, but it was a risk she was willing to take.
He still hadn’t moved, and she almost smiled at the idea of seducing him. She’d never seduced anyone before. How hard could it be?
She ran her tongue across his bottom lip, and he detonated, his hands yanking her off the cot and onto his lap.
Not hard at all.
Her knees landed on either side of him, proving to her that some parts of him were very hard indeed.
He took her mouth and plundered it with an urgency that made her crazy in return. She wanted him inside her, not his fingers, his cock. She rocked against him and bit his bottom lip at the same time.
He growled low, almost silently, but the vibration went all the way through her, as he shoved his hand down the back of her pants. His long fingers caressed and teased her, making her squirm and moan.
“Shh,” he whispered in her ear. “There are people all around us, and those little sounds you’re making are killing me.”
She nipped his earlobe, then sucked on it, and he jerked beneath her, his breathing becoming choppy. His fingers were busy coaxing cream from her body, but she wanted more than that.
Ava jerked herself away, checked the tent’s closure. Zipped up tight. Giving River a grin, she tore off her clothes, all of them.
His mouth fell open as he took her in. She didn’t give him time to protest or try to talk her into putting some of her clothes back on. She went to her knees in front of him and attacked his pants.