by Juno Rushdan
Series: Cowboy State Lawmen #3
Also in this series: Wyoming Winter Rescue, Wyoming Christmas Stalker, Wyoming Mountain Murder
Publisher: Harlequin Intrigue
Publication Date: April 25, 2023
Source: the author
I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.My rating:
The toughest negotiation of his FBI career
Includes her and their unborn baby
When tough-as-nails FBI agent Becca Hammond becomes an unwitting hostage, top negotiator Jake Delgado faces the toughest crisis of his life. Becca’s not only a trusted colleague, but she’s also pregnant—with his child. Jake’s got to figure out why the kidnappers are so desperate. Can he do that before it’s too late for the town, Becca…and their future together?
Whenever I pick up a Juno Rushdan book, I know I’m in for a suspenseful ride. And while I was initially a bit doubtful – how would a romance work when the MCs are apart for a good chunk of the book? – well, I should know by now not to doubt Ms. Rushdan! This is a deeply satisfying romantic suspense, with high stakes, twists and a no-strings-attached romance that’s tested by several explosive revelations.
Despite being at loggerheads for years, there’s always been an attraction between FBI agents Becca and Jake. For the past few months that’s turned into a passionate affair whenever the two of them are in the same town. But things are changing, so when Becca’s attempts to turn their no-strings-attached fling into a relationship aren’t received well she storms off into the town library to retrieve her nephew from his high school bookclub. Jake is stunned and blindsided that Becca wants to suddenly change the terms of their agreement – and even more stunned when a van full of armed men suddenly storm the library, taking everyone inside hostage, including Becca. With his lover’s life on the line, this may be the most important hostage negotiation of Jake’s life.
Jake is confident and honest, two traits that you’d definitely want in a hostage negotiator. He also excels at compartmentalizing his emotions, something that’s great for his work but not so great for his personal life as his ex would attest to. He also has a seriously annoying tendency to question Becca’s decisions, to treat her like she’s acting without thinking. Truthfully, Becca is the kind of agent who acts on her hunches and takes risks, but not unnecessary ones. Jake does admire her stubbornness, but in a hostage situation where it means she’s likely to try to outwit her kidnapppers? Not so much. But despite everything else, Becca knows her own mind and where she stands. If Jake won’t step up to his new role, well, he’s not necessary for her new life.
This is basically everything I’m looking for in a romantic suspense: two main characters who are highly competent at their jobs, high stakes and enough twists to keep you on the edge of your seat. While I usually prefer to only have the MC’s POVs, the author skillfully interweaves the hostage takers’ in as well, adding in emotional depth on all sides (and plenty of little hints to ratchet up the tension).
Overall, another excellent entry into the series, and I’m looking forward to getting Charlie’s book next! Highly recommended to anyone who loves romantic suspense!
Content notes: View Spoiler »