by Lisa Marie Rice
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Former Navy SEAL Joe Harris nearly died—twice—on a medevac helo after being blown up by an IED. He’s not moving too great these days, but if there was ever a woman designed to jump start a man’s hormones, it would be his new neighbor.I received an ARC of this book from the Publisher, via Netgalley; this does not affect my opinion of this book or the content of my review.
Meeting Isabel—loving Isabel—brought Joe back to life.
Isabel Delvaux came from one of America’s foremost political dynasties, until the greatest terrorist attack since 9/11 killed her entire family. She barely survived the Washington Massacre, only to become prey for rabid reporters. Fleeing to Portland and changing her name was a way out, a way to start over. The only way.
She knows she’s safe with Joe Harris. Not just because he's big and strong, not just because he's part of a security team that obliterates threats on the regular, but because he’s been to the abyss and back.
But as they help each other heal--through talk, through touch, through spectacular sex—the past comes back to play. When Isabel’s memory starts to return and a mysterious stranger sends Joe emails indicating she’s in imminent danger, he'll do anything to help her uncover the truth. Even if that truth is the most terrifying thing of all…
I am just like an excited puppy when it comes to Lisa Marie Rice's Midnight series, and the excitement has not died down as I stare at book 6. Just picture the excited little puppy having a full body shake and wriggle over a milk bone. Yeah, that is me when it comes to this series. There is a repeatable format that just works for me. Damaged (in some way or another) hero who is totally sweet and protectively alpha. Damaged (in some way or another) heroine with a heart of gold. Some mystery or Machiavellian scheme that needs solving and/or thwarting where they save each other or at least each save the day, and then happily ever after. Honestly, with as much serious trauma and drama as these former Special Forces security consultants have in their personal lives, it is just amazing they can be so successful financially.
It seems repetitive, and I suppose if you read them back to back, it would be. However, the characters and the plots are all just different enough to make it fun, and it is just so energetically done, that you cannot help liking them. Plus, you have this really tight knit group of men who are like family, and they fold the women into their group seamlessly. Everybody just loves everybody, and it is happy and idyllic. Is it realistic? Absolutely not. But this is my happy time, so I suck it right up.
And oh, Isabel and Joe kept me all happy wriggly in the very best ways. Yeah Isabel is mentally/emotionally damaged, but despite the quickness it happens, you do see her healing arc. And Joe is physically damaged, but already getting better. So you see them as human, but it isn't all about the angst. It is often about longing, fun, and sexy times. And food, all the delicious food. There is also the aforementioned Machiavellian plot, but honestly, that was so ridiculously over the top I couldn't really take it seriously. It was just part and parcel of the whole over the top world we have here. Suspense without the angst or nerves, if you see what I mean. And even Isobel gets to kick butt. The only real niggle I have is the whole fetishization of going condom-less. It is idiotic and irks the hell out of me, and I would completely love more condom positivity from Ms. Rice.
Overall, 4 stars because it embraces what it is, and I enjoy the ride.