Into the Firestorm by Kat Martin

Into the Firestorm by Kat MartinInto the Firestorm by Kat Martin
Series: , , #3
Published by Zebra on January 31st 2017
Pages: 400
Buy on Amazon

M. Cassidy...Luke Brodie had heard the name before, some novice bounty hunter working Seattle, catching tricky skips with more success than a newcomer should expect. But the dark curls, sparkly top, and impressive cleavage were not what Brodie had pictured. Emma Cassidy is tough and smart and sexy as hell. She's also popping up a step ahead of him every time he s close to the capture he wants most . . . and there s no room for learning on the trail of this monster.
Emma has idolized Luke Brodie, the bounty hunter who can bring anyone in. The big man in the soft shoes, with a face like a fallen angel and a reputation for breaking hearts. Watching him in action is intoxicating. But her fight with Rudy Vance is fiercely personal. If he gets too close, Brodie will find out just how ferocious she can be . . .

A very promising prologue which I felt boded well, but it didn’t go how I’d anticipated from there onwards. A lot of the action is very linear, almost reality-tv-like as we follow the characters’ actions and activities, but I found myself getting bored, unable to muster up that sense of anticipation that should have accompanied the search for their target. There are winding turns as both Luke Brodie and Emma Cassidy go through just to comb for information, as the introduction of secondary characters, a list of suspects/informants and a romance sub-plot that diffracted the romance and the overall sense of suspense.

I liked Emma well enough I guess; her gutsy determination making her a woman who has to draw the attention of a notorious womaniser because she is different from every other woman he knows. But the cliché has only begun. Luke’s reputation precedes him: he’s renowned for finding people just as he is for the rotating number of women in bed for whom not being with a woman for three weeks is made out to be apparently a huge accomplishment (is this really worthy of applause?), where this short period is already termed as a seeming lack of interest in the opposite sex. If that didn’t add to my already less than stellar impression of him, wanting Emma suddenly made him realise he needed a woman badly and how he needed one now was cringe-worthy, as is the denial that he isn’t a manwhore when he is the very definition of the unapologetic, uncommitted male fearing anything more than casual affairs. The setup of a male protagonist who only goes for one-nighters, who is ruled by his razor-focus in the field and a philandering attitude with women somehow cannot resonate with me as some romantic lead worth trumpeting despite Kat Martin’s attempt at rationalising his behaviour as one who finally burned out on one-nighters and found sex with Emma to be the ‘best of his life’.

In short, Luke Brodie is the romantic lead stereotype I never quite signed up for and can’t ever see as a shining example of a romantic lead. There’s enough repetition about how Emma refuses to join his nightly brigade of women but can’t help it because of Luke’s huge sex appeal and how well he fills his clothes. But above all, it was hard to get invested in this pairing beyond their ruminating about how hot each other was, because lust seemed to be the primary reason for hooking up, apart from the shared case they were working on.

On the other hand, Emma Cassidy’s own insecurities about Luke’s reputation, her fear about falling in love with him while knowing that Luke wouldn’t want anything more than their short-term affair made her seem indecisive at best. That Emma went after Luke after he ended their affair (while giving the typical excuse that he didn’t deserve her) because he had no courage to fight for their relationship drove the last nail into the coffin for me.

‘Into the Firestorm’ missed the mark with me; clearly Martin’s style of writing, use of plot devices and stereotypical characterisations aren’t a fit for me at all.