I love the blend of paranormal romance and suspense in this series. Each story draws the X-Ops team one step closer and sometimes two steps back from defeating their enemies, but the plots are engaging and the romances satisfying.
This is the fifth installment in the series and I would recommend reading them in order and including the novella because of the suspense plot threading through them all and the main characters sometimes overlapping from the previous book.
This one picks up the story of Layla and Jayson. Layla is Ivy’s younger sister and has now just earned her mission-ready status. Unfortunately, that complicates an already strained relationship with Jayson. Jayson was once a special forces leader until his back was severely wounded from shrapnel. Now he is in constant pain and feeling useless. Jayson takes his bitterness out on Layla and knows he will lose her if he doesn’t figure out how to be worthy of her. Layla loves Jayson fine just the way he is, even her cat nature side is attracted, but she doesn’t know how much longer she can hang on while he pushes her away.
Into this situation, the slimy assistant director insinuates himself with Jayson and promises him a completely healthy body if he takes the untried new hybrid serum. Jayson is desperate. He is thrown into a mission to test him and it deteriorates fast in the war-torn Ukrainian streets. Layla no sooner comes off her mission than she turns around and races to Jayson because of the unstable dangerous drug coursing through him.
Meanwhile, Ivy and Landon encounter a shifter jewel thief who unwittingly conducts a heist against the wrong guy and nabs more than a diamond when she cracks the safe. The hunt is on to find her and not all the hunters plan to leave her alive.
This one was pretty exciting and intense. I loved the individual story lines going on in this one. Layla and Jayson’s story going on with this new mission on the home front for Ivy and Landon and a surprising new character. I hope we meet her again along with the intrepid police detective.
Very much action-driven, but the passion and suspense elements were blended in nicely.
I love the set up and world of this story. The author’s special shifters are unique and I love that this is a military ops group. There is a camaraderie with this bunch and each new story carries several familiar faces that help each other out and form a tight group against those who are hurting and using people and the government for their own gain.
I also appreciate how each new couple even though they are always a shifter paired with a human have their own unique circumstances and conflicts to deal with. Jayson had to figure out that he had worth regardless of his physical ability and Layla had to experience her first mission to see that she could be a true operator and partner. She is a capable woman and I loved how her cat shifter nature helped her on her missions.
All in all, this was another engaging installment. Those who enjoy action-driven paranormal romantic suspense would most probably enjoy this series.
My thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #282 PNR
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