Soldier-for-hire Ethan Hayes is the youngest member of an elite mercenary team. While he may be affectionately nicknamed the rookie, the skills Ethan honed as a Marine make him seriously dangerous. But when a sudden distress call puts him in close quarters with a rival, he finds more than his field skills being put to the test.
Juliet Mason stands out as the master thief in a covert group of assassins and spies. Her latest mission is personal—and it’s gone horribly wrong. Juliet may prefer to work alone, but when the rookie comes to her aid in snowy Eastern Europe, she can’t deny they make a good team. But even up against a powerful enemy, their most challenging task yet may be fighting the passion between them…
*Blurb from Goodreads*
I’m a big fan of Kennedy, and I absolutely adore the Killer Instincts series. It’s a little crazy, a little wild, and so much fun!
Ethan is the youngest guy on his squad, but what he lacks in age he makes up for in experience. When he intercepts an SOS call from the sexy and mysterious Juliet, Ethan forgoes his vacation for the chance at helping Juliet tend her wounds, and possibly get the chance to show her just how much she turns him on.
Juliet loves her job. She is a master thief, skilled assassin, and wonder spy. Her latest mission is completely personal, and although she hates working with anyone else, between her wounds and the target, Juliet is going to need help. While she is hesitant to work with Ethan, he finds a way to knock down all her barriers, while proving to be an asset in the field. But even their combined skills might not be enough to save them both in the end.
I was really looking forward to reading about Juliet, because she was such a mysterious character. She is one of those heroines who refuses to let anyone in, and she guards her heart with everything she’s got. I loved getting to read about her backstory, to find out exactly why she had built up so many walls. It was a pretty traumatic backstory, so the personal nature of her mission really added to the intensity of the suspense throughout the book.
I adored Ethan. While he was a younger hero, he was leaps and bounds above other heroes in regard to maturity level. I loved his take-charge attitude, and how he didn’t rub his experience in Juliet’s face, instead he just rolled with her punches and worked really hard to prove himself at every step of the way. And when he screwed up (because, of course he did!) he made it a point to go out of his way to make sure that he gained her trust back and continued to build on it. He was such a great hero, and I loved him.
One aspect of this series I can’t get enough of is the secondary characters. I am DYING to know what the deal is between Jim and Noelle, especially since they are both in charge of their own teams and are adversaries in the field. Yet, they obviously have a strong attraction, strong connection, and a history that is bound to be painful and misconstrued by both parties. I can’t wait to find out what the deal is, and how they work it out.
I liked the suspense in this book, especially given the personal nature for Juliet. Kennedy does a really great job of balancing out pulse-pounding scenes with relaxed downtimes. It adds for a really fast moving story that hits all the key points. Romance development, story advancement, and everything in between. I thought this was one of the weaker villains Kennedy has written, especially since I didn’t think the man necessarily lived up to the legend he built himself to be. Ethan and Juliet spent so much time planning on how to target him because of his status and stature, that when they actually got around to meeting the man, it was a bit of a disappointment for me.
That being said, the way the suspense plot came to a close blew me away! I loved the way Ethan and Juliet were forced to admit their feelings for each other, and what they had to endure to get out of it all alive. It was so well done, and something I’d never read in any other book.
All in all, the Killer Instincts series continues to be a favorite romantic suspense series for me. I love the over-the-top storylines and characters. I thought Ethan and Juliet were so cute together, especially as their relationship built slowly over the course of the book. I am absolutely DESPERATE for the next book in the series now. Especially after the build up to Jim and Noelle!
I give Midnight Pursuits a B