BLURB: Navy men don’t come tougher than Lieutenant Peter Greene. Every day he whips hotshot SEAL wannabes into elite fighters. So why can’t he handle one fifteen-year-old girl? His ex’s death left him a single dad overnight, and very unprepared. Though he can’t relate to an angsty teen, he can at least keep Maddie safe—until the day she disappears. Though Pete’s lacking in fatherly intuition, his instinct for detecting danger is razor sharp. Maddie’s in trouble. Now he needs the Troubleshooters team at his back, along with an unconventional ally.
Romance writer Shayla Whitman never expected to be drawn into a real-world thriller—or to meet a hero who makes her pulse pound. Action on the page is one thing. Actually living it is another story. Shay’s not as bold as her heroines, but she’s a mother. She sees the panic in her new neighbor’s usually fearless blue eyes—and knows there’s no greater terror for a parent than having a child at risk. It’s an ordeal Shay won’t let Pete face alone. She’s no highly trained operative, but she’s smart, resourceful, and knows what makes teenagers tick.
Still, working alongside Pete has its own perils—like letting the heat between them rise out of control. Intimate emotions could mean dangerous, even deadly, consequences for their mission. No matter what, they must be on top of their game, and playing for keeps . . . or else Pete’s daughter may be gone for good.
I had some high expectations for this one; I love the Troubleshooter series so much! And having devoured the latest novellas starring my fave Seal of all time, Izzy Zanella, I was really excited for this one.
However, for me this one fell a bit short. I feel like in the beginning it dragged a bit, and after a while it was becoming a struggle to keep reading, and I get the slow build to action but this was a bit too slow IMO. I kept waiting for the action to get here! And I did like the end part because finally something was happening, but felt there could have been more build up I guess. I’ll admit the few Izzy POV chapters were what intrigued me the most, but as I said earlier he is my fave so team Izzy for life!
Things that irked me: I get that people are flawed creatures, we sometimes say and do some reallyyy cringe worthy stuff BUT I could not get past some things Shayla said/thought, I just couldn’t. For instance when she goes to Peter’s house and some of his friends are there and she just literally met Adam (at this moment she’s unaware that Adam is actor Adam Wyndham) and her first though is he’s adorable and probably gay????? Um say what??? How did she land on gay? There was nothing in her thought processes that even indicated why she would think this. Is she just assuming this because of how Adam’s dressed? He’s just sitting there, so what makes her assume this? Because, yeah I know IRL people make allll sorts of assumptions about others but really Shay? You’re just gonna assume this right off?
Another thing that really bothered me was when Shay much later down in the book says that Maddie’s mom/Peter’s ex: “was probably seriously clinically mentally ill…” again what is Shayla even basing this on?? She’s never met Lisa, only knows anything about her from Peter’s story and yes, while it’s clear Lisa was a cheater and a perhaps a liar too how does Shay deduce Lisa’s supposed mental illness from anything Peter says? She backs up her assumptions with nothing, just assumes this and Peter doesn’t call her on it either so does he agree or just not care what she’s saying?? >.> I’m no expert on mental illness at all and I could be very wrong, but this seems like a huge assumption on Shay’s part.
Now onto the whole Dingo and Maddie situation. Dingo is twenty, Maddie is fifteen. We see that Dingo realizes he likes Maddie and he’s very aware that she’s underaged, he says this to himself and won’t give in to his attraction to her, except he does by kissing her after the earthquake >.> She is fifteen!!! And they supposedly love each other (Maddie says it first). But did we forget she is fifteen???? So there was the kiss after the earthquake and the one where he was sleeping and Maggie kisses him, supposedly after Dingo kisses her (he was sleeping and thought he was dreaming this then wakes up like wtf she’s kissing me). I’m reallyyy glad we get Dingo letting Maddie know that no that wasn’t cool cuz he was asleep and couldn’t consent to the kiss so kudos to Dingo for that but really? This whole thing between them just had me sighing in a not good way! Dingo who I might remind you is an adult and twenty, and Maddie who is freaking fifteen?? Yeah no. And even though we see Dingo telling Maddie nope we’re not gonna do this, he’s not gonna give into his supposed love for her I’m like…was it even necessary to set up this whole we can’t be together cuz you’re underaged thing in the first place? They could’ve just been strictly friends and later on, in another book perhaps, when Maddie is an actual adult you see the friends to more grow. But right now? With her being fifteen? I just could not get past that fact.
I don’t think Dingo’s a bad guy at all…he risked a lot to help Maddie, hell he jumped in front a gun for her and at least he didn’t take advantage of her (side eyes him for that first kiss tho) but he’s an adult, she’s fifteen! And yes at the end there’s the whole he’ll wait til she’s of age and meantime they’ll be chaperoned visits etc etc but Yes I’m still gonna be stuck on that! I feel like that still shouldn’t go un-acknowledged. So when Maddie is an actual adult I look forward to their story, if there will be one written.
I did like that Shay does call Peter on his bossy “you need to do this thing I’m telling you to do” by letting him know right off that yeh no do not tell her/command her what she has to do and challenges him on this. Good. Lots of books I see the hero telling the heroine what she has to do like she doesn’t get a choice in the matter. Even if done out of worry for her safety he got called on it so yes, go Shay!
So while I’m sad to say this one wasn’t my fave I am looking forward to what’s next in this series. *cough* please Jay Lopez’s book please. Also want to see more of Boat Squad John, those guys are awesome! And as always more Izzy Zanella please and thanks!