Series: Forged in Fire #1
Published by Author Collective 20 on 22nd February 2021
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She was my best friend's wife—strike one.
Now, she's a firefighter's widow—strike two.
And she wants nothing to do with a man who risks his life every day—strike three.
Keeping an emotional distance from Natalie while still taking care of her after Evan died has been one of the biggest challenges of my life. One I've managed for two years.
Right up until she starts dating again, which kicks off a heated argument and ends in a soul-searing kiss. Once that line is crossed, there's no going back.
I eat, breathe, and sleep firefighting. It's not just what I do, it's who I am. I fuckin' love this job. I never thought I'd ever let anything come between me and my career, but Natalie isn’t just anything. In fact, she's everything—everything I never knew I wanted but now can't live without.
The odds aren't in our favor. If this job doesn't tear us apart, the secret I've been harboring will.
Built on forbidden attraction and the woes of life in general, ‘Flashpoint’ by Skye Jordan seems to straddle the point where fiction tends to cross the boundaries into the struggles and tragedies that plague us.
On the one hand, it’s about two people reconciling themselves to the idea that they can and are allowed to be attracted to each other after a ‘respectable’ period of time has passed after the death of a spouse. On the other hand, it’s also a story about conflict coming in the form of life throwing obstacle after obstacle in your path so quickly that it’s hard to take a breath, let alone sit, reflect and act.
Natalie/Cole’s story was overall a heartfelt one; I’d expected a lot more angst to surround them but was surprised and somewhat pleased with the general maturity with which they dealt with their growing relationship and their decision to stay together. It did feel a little implausible however, that Cole went from denying his feelings for Natalie to the sudden snappy turnaround that she was all he wanted, as the latter spent most of the book being overwhelmed by the circumstances that she’d found herself in.
What stood out however, was Jordan’s writing of firefighting – and the toll it takes on relationships and subsequently, how many of these first-responders look at life. It was one that I liked for its matter-of-fact, non-technical-laden portrayal of a difficult profession that seems to garner all sorts of reactions. That Natalie/Cole worked their way through this particularly thorny issue was gratifying to read at least.
Still, ‘Flashpoint’ is more sweetness than fire, leaning more towards romance and less heart-pounding action. As the first book in a series, it’s definitely one that I sort of liked, though its predictability had my enthusiasm waning somewhat towards the end.