He’ll guard her body all night long.
Former Marine Jude Wilde’s motto has always been “burn bridges and never look back,” so nobody is more surprised when Wilde Security is hired to protect assistant district attorney Libby Pruitt, the woman he loved and left. Although she makes it clear she wants nothing to do with Jude, they’re forced to fake a relationship for her safety. He can’t ignore the heat still simmering between them, and when her stalker’s threats escalate to attempted murder, he’s left with no choice but to whisk her away to a friend’s safe house in Key West, FL.
Cooped up in paradise together, Jude begins to chip away at Libby’s resolve to hate him. But even as she gives in to his proximity and her body’s demands for his, she refuses to fall for his charms again. Maybe a torrid affair in the sun is exactly what she needs to get him out of her system. But when her stalker tracks them down, can they escape the steamy Key West night without anyone getting hurt?
So, Jude Wilde,ex-military turned private investigator with his four brothers, screwed up royally in the past, and now looking to make things right when he’s hired to protect the secret love of his life who is an assistant District Attorney with a violent, deadly stalker and no desire to see Jude ever again. Sure, I’m in.
What to say. Jude deliberately broke up his own engagement with Libby with a cheating set-up (I use the ‘set up’ part on purpose since I knew from the first instant it wasn’t real or true), broke her heart and moved on. He carries a ton of guilt with him over something about his parents’ deaths and also about a fellow Marine buddy’s bad situation. He’s loaded down with guilt over too much and coping by playing the immature, live in the moment guy that drives everyone nuts- me included. On Libby’s part, she believed what Jude led her to believe- he cheated and broke up a two-day engagement eight years before- she never got past it and now pours out all her pain and venom on him while they are cooped up together hiding from her stalker.
It was not an easy set up for a story and I knew going in that there were mistakes and recriminations coming all around. I did, but then I was reading it and just got tired of it all.
Libby, an otherwise brilliant and successful ADA (not convinced the way she thought and acted) refuses to believe that the problem is deadly. She resists protection or the need to play it safe. Then she goes with the hiding away together in a lovely Key West villa only to spend her time horny, snarky, and bored, and pulling stunts that keep her and Jude in danger.
I think the moment that did it for me was when she was busy slut-shaming him and thinking the worst when he’s a single guy and they are long broken up, but then she demands he sleep with her.
She has no evidence that he’s been with tons of women or even one, for one thing. He’s just saved her life and is standing between her and death with his own life (no thank yous and a lot of snarling at him because hey, its safer to be angry than grateful). She mentally knows she’s being unfair (has this little thought a few times before she opens her mouth), but plows ahead jabbing him hard acting disgusted and hateful. She says something along the lines of, I want to have sex to get you out of my system and you owe it to me because its your fault I’ve been a virtual nun since you left me and I couldn’t get over you. And I thought it was hypocritical to no sooner get done condemning him for being a male slut, but then deciding he’s fine to scratch her itch. Lost any chance of getting my respect. Be angry and hurt, but to use someone makes you the person you’re complaining about, Libby girl.
Yeah, after more than a third of the book going along like this and a few skimmed later passages seeing more of the same, I decided to end it. Jude had his reasons and Libby has hers. Both are semi-legit, but I just wasn’t in mood. I didn’t care for either of them and didn’t care what was happening.
That said, I have enjoyed this author’s writing before so I think I’ll give this series another chance with another Wilde brother and his story. I think if I had more patience to wait out the time of this pair storming about and then actually sitting down to talk about the past maturely while also getting on with the excitement of the deadly stalker that I might have liked it in the end- or not. So maybe later, but definitely not now.
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