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Cover of Night by Laura Griffin

Posted in Action/Adventure/ Advanced Reader Copy/ Contemporary Romance/ Military/Paramilitary/ Netgalley/ Reviews/ Romantic Suspense 10th August 2017
Cover of Night by Laura GriffinCover of Night by Laura Griffin
Series: Alpha Crew #3
Published by Pocket Star on September 4th 2017
Pages: 128
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two-stars

Journalist Karly Bonham is on her first overseas mission, covering the new United States ambassador to Thailand, when she is taken hostage by terrorists, with only her wits and courage to keep her alive—until help arrives in the form of Navy SEAL Ethan Dunn.

As part of an elite SEAL team called Alpha Crew, Ethan has been on countless harrowing missions, but he knows this one is different the instant he meets Karly—the sexy young reporter who somehow managed to escape the terrorists’ clutches. Ethan is impressed by her, especially when he learns she has intel that could be the key to a successful rescue op. Ethan knows working with a civilian raises the stakes on an already dangerous mission. But with the clock ticking down, he enlists Karly’s help to thwart a vicious plot and bring a terrorist mastermind to justice.

Laura Griffin’s ‘Alpha Crew’ series has been a very different read so far from her ‘Tracers’ series. The books in there are short, action-packed, with significant time lapses between several chapters and in many ways, a very, very distilled and disappointing version of a military/paramilitary romantic suspense novel.

The short length of the book does the whole story a disservice. I’ve no doubts about Griffin’s writing to begin with, nor with her ability to handle intricate plot lines and elaborate setups that have made some of her books so memorable for me.

But with ‘Cover of Night’ topping out at a mere 100-ish pages, I felt that Karly’s and Ethan’s connection did exist, though it was harder to be convinced by their relationship and the love declarations when all they had was a one-night stand fuelled by the thrill of a rescue and the let down of adrenaline. What for instance, made Ethan, who didn’t do relationships, want something more with Karly when there didn’t seem to be any other indication that she was different from the other women he picked up except for the fact that she rebuffed him? Moreover, Karly’s sudden change in attitude towards the end towards Ethan when he was pushing her for something more the night before he was about to be shipped out was beyond abrupt especially when the story ended just there.

In other words, everything felt too rushed and unfinished, from their relationship to the terrorist plot that was supposedly foiled with a significant arrest. ‘Cover of Night’ simply had so much potential which wasn’t quite fulfilled by the end, leaving me rather mixed about this series because it really could have been so much better.

two-stars

Edge of Surrender by Laura Griffin

Posted in Contemporary Romance/ Military/Paramilitary/ Mystery/Crime/ Reviews/ Romantic Suspense 1st April 2016
Edge of Surrender by Laura GriffinEdge of Surrender by Laura Griffin
Series: Alpha Crew, #2
Published by Pocket Star on March 28th 2016
Pages: 128
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three-stars

Ryan had one job: keep Emma safe at all costs. But after a night of passion, Emma takes off and Ryan soon realizes he’s not the only one looking for her. Can he figure out who’s after the beautiful government aide, and why, before she falls into the wrong hands…if she hasn’t already?
Emma’s fighting to get justice for her fallen comrades, but she can’t do it alone. She needs Ryan’s help, but that means trusting him--and dealing with the out-of-control desire blazing between them. Can there be any future for a marked woman and a man trained to kill? She hopes they live long enough to find out…

I’m simply going to leave the same review for this part as I did the first, seeing as this would have worked better as a single novel than 2 novellas separated by a few short weeks. I deliberately waited until I had both parts before I began reading and that did pay off at least, but knowing how this one ended certainly made me understand the frustrations of those who had to wait for the second part for the story’s (less than satisfactory) conclusion.

Yet Laura Griffin’s foray into military romantic suspense apart from her Tracers series seems like a tentative one, but the Alpha Crew series already has the potential to be as successful as her Texas crime-busters one – if ‘Beyond Limits’ (a sure favourite of mine) is any indication of what she can do with SEALs and strong women.

I loved the way we are plunged straight into adventure and danger: a plane crash, a stubborn woman who does everything to survive (realistically so) and a SEAL determined to protect her at all costs, even as an unexpected attraction flares between them. Yet I neither hated nor loved both protagonists though, since I simply thought it was more lust (the immediate burn of attraction) than love that connected them, all the way to the very abrupt end. There isn’t much depth to both Emma and Ryan for me to be really invested in them, nor is there a satisfying ‘Hollywood style’ taking down of the bad guy – the pace of the story is both a boon and a bane for character development in this case – and I’d actually hoped for something more concrete and poignant by the time I turned the last page.

three-stars

At the Edge by Laura Griffin

Posted in Contemporary Romance/ Military/Paramilitary/ Mystery/Crime/ Reviews/ Romantic Suspense 1st April 2016
At the Edge by Laura GriffinAt the Edge by Laura Griffin
Series: Alpha Crew, #1
Published by Pocket Star on March 7th 2016
Pages: 144
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three-stars

When Emma Wright’s government plane goes down over the Philippine jungle, she’s forced to survive alone until an ultra-elite SEAL team goes in after her. As the leader of Alpha Crew, Ryan Owen is no stranger to challenges, but he’s never tackled anything quite like this sexy, smart, and resourceful woman. The mission is to get Emma home safely, but danger is everywhere, and Ryan’s unexpected desire for Emma could be a deadly distraction.
Back home in California, Ryan’s mission is over—but Emma’s has just begun. She knows her plane crash was no accident, and she’s determined to uncover the truth about what happened—even if her quest for answers puts her at risk. Torn between duty and desire, Ryan searches for a way win Emma’s heart while protecting her from an invisible enemy who wants her dead.
The thrilling conclusion to this Alpha Crew romance is just weeks away!

I deliberately waited until I had both parts before I began reading and that did pay off at least, but knowing how this one ended certainly made me understand the frustrations of those who had to wait for the second part for the story’s (less than satisfactory) conclusion.

Yet Laura Griffin’s foray into military romantic suspense apart from her Tracers series seems like a tentative one, but the Alpha Crew series already has the potential to be as successful as her Texas crime-busters one – if ‘Beyond Limits’ (a sure favourite of mine) is any indication of what she can do with SEALs and strong women.

I loved the way we are plunged straight into adventure and danger: a plane crash, a stubborn woman who does everything to survive (realistically so) and a SEAL determined to protect her at all costs, even as an unexpected attraction flares between them. Yet I neither hated nor loved both protagonists though, since I simply thought it was more lust (the immediate burn of attraction) than love that connected them, all the way to the very abrupt end. There isn’t much depth to both Emma and Ryan for me to be really invested in them, nor is there a satisfying ‘Hollywood style’ taking down of the bad guy – the pace of the story is both a boon and a bane for character development in this case – and I’d actually hoped for something more concrete and poignant by the time I turned the last page.

three-stars
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