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Into the Crossfire: A Protectors Novel: Navy SEAL Mass Market Paperback – Nov 29 2011
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"McLarty's subtle emotional intensity is particularly compelling as he presents horrifying scenes without theatrics." (AudioFile 2010) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
Sam Reston’s world is dangerous, uncertain, violent . . . with no room in it for the helpless and weak. Then the most beautiful woman in the world moves next door to him . . .
Nicole Pearce’s life is complicated enough. The last thing she needs is to get involved with a secretive, hard-bodied, hard-headed neighbor. Yet Sam leaves her breathless—her body tingling with desire—and it takes every ounce of her fabled control to resist offering herself to him, no strings attached. What she doesn’t know is that Sam Reston is on an undercover assignment . . . and she’s about to step into the crossfire.
Never has Sam ached for a woman so badly. Now Nicole’s in grave danger and he will become her shield. Because a terrorist plot hatched half a world away is heading to their doorstep—and it can be derailed by only one man and one woman.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Unfortunately, the first third of the book could easily have been shortened by 60 or more pages to create a more tightly written story line - or at least one that had the kind of suspense and action one expects in romantic suspense. All that breathlessness and so little story made for dull reading. There was the typical sex scene where - I'm sure you'll be shocked - they were breathless and neither could speak due to all that chemistry and .......... probably oxygen deprivation from all that breathlessness.
The story finally gets moving, sort of, in the last third of the book. Unfortunately, time is past for developing the kind of thrills a romantic suspense novel should have. Heroine is saved, hero is well, heroic, bad guys are foiled, but chief bad guy goes to England to try again. Predictable. Character and relationship development is pretty much non-existent.
Into the Crossfire read like a book outline heavily padded with melodrama. Suspense was in short supply, kind of like breath. A real disappointment from a usually reliable author.
Pros: I love the way Rice writes. Her books are well-paced and involving. This book has a better plot than most and the terrorist sub plot is very interesting. The characters are typical: beautiful heroine with family baggage paired with alpha-male hero from a bad upbringing, with an elite military background, and with an enormous hard-to-control Johnson at the mere thought of the heroine. This hero also has a clear disregard for expensive lingerie. It's a formula, but it works for me because I love the internal dialog Rice applies to her heroes. Her heroines are, um, easy, to put it nicely, and succumb to the intense sexuality of the hero on the first date -- though she's never done anything like that before, of course not. (Hey, they only have 300 pages to get it on, she can't be too coy.) In this book Nicole runs out while Sam is sleeping after the first time and then avoids his calls. This leads to some really good writing as Sam tries to figure out what turned her off and how to get her back.
Cons: It was a really good plot until the TSTL* moment when Nicole delivers herself on a silver platter to the bad guys without leaving any breadcrumbs for Sam to follow. The cop Mark doesn't behave like a trained cop when he goes along with Sam on his rescue mission.
Overall this is a fun read. Again, it follows a formula, but it's one I'll read over and over again because I love this author's voice and there are enough subtle differences in plot and character to trick me into thinking I'm reading a different book. Highly recommended 4 stars.
*TSTL--To Stupid To Live. The moment at which an intelligent heroine loses her brains and does something so incredibly stupid you can't relate to her anymore. (Imagine Michelle Obama bored at a state dinner suddenly starting a food fight to liven things up. Wouldn't happen.) Sometimes used as a plot device to quickly achieve dramatic tension, the heroine does something dumb putting herself in danger so that the hero can save her. A TSTL moment is when it backfires on the author and you say, "Oh, come on," and close the book.
Into the Crossfire, the first book in Lisa's Protectors series, has this strange sense of déjà vu because of this LMR formula. Sam Reston is a former Navy Seal who works undercover, taking down sex traffickers, drug cartel thugs, you name it. Sam "made his living as a soldier leading hard men, and now as a civilian he made his living being tougher than most." Sam is hard and tough all over (another LMR trademark hero) and has no room for any softness in his life. But, that all changes when he spots Nicole Pearce, the most beautiful woman in the world and his "personal wet dream". Everything about Nicole screams class and elegance, the very opposite of what Sam is. Nicole has an office in the same building in downtown San Diego as Sam does, but she keeps her distance from him because she thinks he's shady.
An opportunity arises for Sam to meet Nicole and talk to her. He helps her out of a sticky situation and explains who he is, why he's dresses the way he does and that he's the owner of a security company. Nicole changes her opinion about Sam very quickly and because she's strangely attracted to him, she accepts his dinner invitation.
Nicole has given up so much to come back home and take care of her dying father. She once lived a life of privilege with loving parents who worked at the UN in Geneva. She's now trying to make her fledging translation business a success. She barely has the time or money to go out on dates, but since Sam makes her so aroused, she decides, why not have a nice meal and some romance?
Sam isn't necessarily the type to wine and dine a woman. He has very underused courting skills. But over dinner he and Nicole connect, and then she accepts another invitation. This one is to go back home with him for a night of hot loving. Nicole is overwhelmed by the way her body responds to Sam, so much so that she almost passes out from the intense pleasure of it all. Sam wants to beat his chest and scream his happiness to the sky because Nicole is the one. But first he has to convince her that they should be together forever as well as keep her safe from a group of dangerous terrorists who are headed to New York with radioactive bombs. Nicole is sent these plans by no choice of her own and is then marked for death. It's up to Sam and his two foster brothers to keep her and her father safe and to stop a massive terrorist attack.
Into the Crossfire occurs over a very short time; only a few days. In that time period there's a lot of sex and violence. Sam is a man any woman would wish by her side. He's the dark silent type who is always in control of every situation, no matter how dangerous it may be. But when a slip of a woman, he's so far gone over, enters the picture, his whole world is turned upside down. Nicole seems fragile at first but is very strong and intelligent. She is also loyal and caring, mainly in regards to her father.
The attraction Sam and Nicole have for one another is intense, fast and semi-erotic. I've said this before, but Lisa writes some of the hottest missionary sex I've ever read, although this time she takes it one step further with the way Sam enjoys giving pleasure to Nicole with his mouth. Also, I must note that not once do these two wear any protection. Nicole mentions in passing how she's on the pill, and even though she has just met Sam, who she did think was a thug, she doesn't mind wrapping her legs around his waist and ride him for all he's worth as he tears off her panties in a fit of lust.
The bad guys and so very eviillll... (insert Dr. Evil from Austin Powers here) and I was more concerned with the dynamics of how Nicole and Sam would work things out between them versus the whole, let's destroy the world plot.
Some of the actions and description are borderline silly including the way Sam constantly wants Nicole too the point of near madness. But yet, I wanted more. I can't get enough of Lisa Marie Rice. Her books are like a big gooey chocolate bar that makes you moan as you eat it. Into the Crossfire fed my need for brooding heroes who worship their angel like heroines with respect and hot, sweaty sex. Lisa Marie Rice is my guilty pleasure reading that always has me wanting more.