Anne Marsh is a new to me author that I couldn’t wait to read. Smoke jumpers? Oh, that just drew me, making me want to learn more. No, I never want to jump out of a plane, but reading about it is just enough for me!
Faye Duncan is moving on with her life and living it up as she tries to find herself. Recently divorced from an loveless marriage, she’s on the road in her new flashy red Corvette pursuing her career, shooting fire photos for a magazine. Encountering a brush fire on the way to small town Strong, California. Unbeknownst to Faye, she captures pictures of an arsonist who she thinks is just fighting a fire. Coasting into a town with car troubles, Faye ties one on at the local bar and winds up in the arms of Evan Donovan.
Evan Donovan is one of three brothers by bonds, adopted and brought up in Strong. Smoking jumping is his life, but also the excitement and adrenaline rush he gets keeps him alive. A big, alpha, masculine man, Evan lives for the next fire and knows that there can be danger at any time. When a buddy calls from his past and asks him to watch out for his ex-wife, Evan isn’t to thrilled, but when he meets Faye, he begins to think there could be more to life that just smoke jumping.
The race is on early to find the arsonist that Faye captured on camera, but also we see the town of Strong and the residents who make it a family town to live in. While there is some suspense on finding the arsonist before he hurts someone, there isn’t any real danger to the characters themselves, which was a disappointment on a suspense level.
Evan has two brothers and they own the jumping company. Jack is the first one to fall in love with Lily in Burning Up, which I am dying to go back and read now. Rio is still unattached and I am going to enjoy reading his story and watching him fall. There is also a side story of their adoptive mother starting to fall in love with the local fireman. More a sweet side story to main story, which will have to cross over into the third book.
Evan offers to give Faye excitement back in her life and takes her on one adventure after another. The heat builds up steadily between the two, but I had some issues that I want to discuss. Faye is recently divorced and really kind of unsure what she wants or needs from life. She trades in her 401K to buy the Corvette and has next to nothing in the way of money to live on. We never really know what she did for a living before the divorce, we only see her life fo the most part when she comes to Strong. In a way she is confused, and lacking the knowledge of where to go next, let alone falling in love. She starts the relationship out as a fling, but in reality the romance moves extremely fast.
Evan on the other hand, well, he mentions early in the story it had been a while since he had sex and he wasn’t much interested in it. When he sees Faye, he decides to watch out for her and takes her to his cabin. Nothing happens because he gets called out the next morning on a jump. He finds his libido pretty quickly and while he never seems to coerce Faye, they are drawn together.
Through it all, there is a little suspense, some heart felt talks in their own heads, strong since of family with side of alpha chest thumping. We get to see a short span for their story that moves on after the story is done. I hope to see more in Rio’s story. While I liked the book, it felt a little forced on Faye’s side to fall in love when she needed time to grow. Evan’s character made me feel like he was in a good place and love just happened to be at the right time.
So what do you think? Should Faye have taken it slower? Gone out on her own to find herself? Is Evan about the hunkiest hero you have read about in a long time?
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