Review: Blaze by Joan Swan

Review: Blaze by Joan SwanBlaze by Joan Swan

Series: Phoenix Rising,
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Romantic Suspense
Published by Kensington on September 25, 2012
Pages: 385
Format: eBook
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four-half-stars  

Things are really heating up in this series of books. I was on the edge of my seat from page one to the moment I closed the book on the last page. If it wasn’t the danger and intrigue caused by the government operatives, it was the hideous amount of sexual tension and passion coming off the main characters. Before I go much further, let me caution folks to read this series in order because it picks up where the first one left off even though the focus puts two different characters in the lime light.

Keira is a tough as nails FBI agent with scary strong skills both as a warrior, but the more hidden mental skills she acquired during the chemical fire that altered her life forever. It is the more secret skills that have led her to this stand-off outside a commune where inside is the boy she has heard speaking in her head for over a year. The strong mental connection has pulled her to this place and she knows time is running out and she must help the boy. When her boss okays her going in, she is forced to take a back-up agent from the ATF agency who are also deployed outside the compound. Her heart-wrenching past smacks her in the face full force when the man she left behind walks up to take his place as her partner.

Luke is as shocked as Keira and he feels the same gut-twisting pain. They aren’t breathing the same air one minute before they start trying to verbally eviscerate each other. They have a job to do so he sucks in all his pain and covers Keira’s tail for her mission. The mission goes south real quick and it isn’t long before they’re on the run with a mystery kid in tow and a lot of questions about what is going on. Meanwhile, their big enemy is on the move too and she won’t wait until they get their personal business sorted before she gives the kill order.

This one was as exciting and breath-taking as the first book. I love the complicated and twisting plots that keep me guessing about how they’ll get out of the dangerous corner they’ve been pushed into. The narrative was told from multiple points of view and shifted between the main plot threads and two minor plots. I enjoyed getting the various perspectives, but I confess that I was always anxious to get back to Keira and Luke’s story.

Word to the wise…the main characters weren’t very likeable at first, but be patient with them. At first, I didn’t like either one of them because both couldn’t seem to get past just trying to hurt each other, but then they slowly started getting past it. Okay, well, Luke grew, but Keira was such a hot mess because of her horrid childhood that she had so much further to go when it came to healing and opening up. So change of heart about the characters from my initial first impression, I really felt for both of them and was really cheering for them to make it work. Wowsers! They were hot together even before they gave in to their passion.

So in the end those who enjoy an intense paranormal romantic suspense on the grittier spicier side should give this book/series a try.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.