Like fire and ice, Alexandra Callet's life runs hot and cold. At the age of thirty-three, Alexandra owns a stunning home and a successful interior design company. But she is in love with her business partner, Jake Taylor, and he doesn't even seem to realize she's a woman. She should be on top of the world, but instead she feels dragged down by the void in her heart. Hoping for answers, she decides a trip to Mexico might soothe her soul.
Jake Taylor only pretends to be a confirmed bachelor. Jake has been entranced by Alexandra's determination and exotic beauty since the moment they met, but she has no idea how he feels. He considers confessing his love, but fears jeopardizing their friendship and business. He's caught in a web of pretending he doesn't care, and doesn't see a way out of it. Alexandra is recruited for a dangerous mission. Following her trip to Mexico, her resemblance to a member of an assassin's family leads Alexandra to be recruited by the DEA. Her training leaves her distracted, and her business begins to suffer. Jake notices her sudden change, and feels her slipping both personally and professionally beyond his reach.
Should he finally take the chance...before it's too late? After all, he has nothing to lose. However, when Alexandra returns to Mexico for her mission, things go terribly wrong. Will she be able find the strength to fight and escape the peaceful haven that has now become her prison?
Or will Jake lose Alexandra forever...
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My Musings :
I received a free copy for an honest review. In no way it affects my musings on the book.
When I first saw the book cover, I wasn't much impressed. The blurb was the one which caught my attention. If you guys are reading my blog frequently then you know that I love friends to lovers theme and this one has it in spades. But the tale was more than that. It was a mish mash of many themes.
There's the love angle with Alex and Jake pining for each other without the other knowing about it. I felt that this angle wasn't explored to the maximum. It was kind of lost among the secrets of Alex's life and the danger she was involved in. But the scenes which did involve them together gave a sweet romantic feel with their feelings on show for everyone. I think the author could have focused more on it to know the depth of the protagonists' characters.
Then there's the adventure theme with Alex being involved in a covert operation. Though I found it credible with her training and the secret meetings, the way they were able to dupe Mago didn't feel authentic to me. I guess I was expecting more in the sense of fighting, because I was truly disappointed that Mago was caught so easily without that much of a fight. I was literally blinking near the end of the book. It was over too fast.
Other than Alex and Jake, I loved the other characters too. The bickering between Mando and Connor had me laughing at times. There were a few twists which I hadn't foreseen while reading. I would have loved to know more about Rico and Daniela though. Kevin and Sparky were genuine in their actions to apprehend Mago and his gang. I loved reading about Kevin's family life. It added a personal touch to him.
The author easily engaged me with her writing and it was a very fast read. I was done even before I realised it. The flow of the tale was without hindrance and the imagery used was easy to visualise. I thoroughly enjoyed though I found a few speed breakers in between.
My rating : 4/5
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, S.K. Derban moved to London within the first three months, and remained in England until the age of five. Her father, an American citizen, was a decorated veteran of the second world war. Derban's mother, born and raised in the United Kingdom, was involved with the London Royal Ballet Company, and a great fan of the arts. Even after returning to the United States, Derban's life was filled with a love of the theatre and a passion for British murder mysteries. S.K. Derban has always remained passionate about writing, and is thrilled to finally share her work with others.
Her personal travel and missionary adventures also help to transport readers virtually across the globe. When writing, S.K. Derban relies on all aspects of her life, from her faith in the Lord, to her love and knowledge of the arts.
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