Today we are thrilled to be sharing our reviews of bestselling author Jane Harvey-Berrick’s all-new powerful military romance stand-alone,
Sergeant James Spears isn’t heartbroken because he doesn’t have one. His heart was ripped from his body when the love of his life was killed in an IED attack in Syria.
Ironic, since James is an elite soldier whose specialty is neutralizing bombs.
Other bomb disposal officers say EOD stands for ‘Every One’s Divorced’, but to James, all he can hear is ‘Every One’s Dead’.
When he meets the flighty, shallow socialite, Lady Arabella Forsythe, he detests her on sight. She’s everything he despises, and the complete opposite of the woman who stole his heart and buried it with her.
Arabella is sleepwalking through her life. Nothing holds her interest for long, not bingeing on champagne and cocaine, sleeping with princes and peers of the realm, not even her own family who are desperate to rehabilitate her.
When two lost souls meet in the grim underbelly of a world that most people avoid, they recognize each other’s shattered reflections. And maybe hatred is the other side of love.
Codename: Sleeping Beauty
Book 2 in the EOD Series #standalone
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Reviewed by Sharon Thérèse at KFF
Although Bombshell is the second installment in the EOD series, there’s absolutely no reason why it can’t be enjoyed as a stand-alone. Harvey-Berrick’s pulled out all the stops and by her bringing out the big guns; excuse the pun, at no point in this explosive story is confusion apparent. Yes, she’s rounded up protagonist’s tale very well indeed and before I go any further, I have to mention the impact this book had on me. The vividly portrayed narrative is incredibly lifelike, making me feel as if I was alongside James in every nerve-wracking scenario. Also, the author’s knack of evoking the reader’s emotions with her masterful prose draws you in to such an extent that putting the book down was for me, a feat in itself. Yeap, it’s not one of those reads you shouldn’t start at daft o’clock!
James is a shadow of his former self, his deep sense of loss is so tangible that my heart bled for him. He’d always put his life on the line and so to speak, lived in the eye of the hurricane as an EOD technician under the harshest of conditions. But the life he knew and the future he yearned for were whisked away because of uncontrollable circumstances in such an unfair way that I was left distraught. And although I didn’t like how the military treated him, it was correct. Stepping in to help, James’ trustworthy friend insists that getting back into the field saving lives just might be his salvation. James’ unwavering loyalty towards Clayton seals the deal regardless of his doubts.
Before, when the war was a reality, it wasn’t only James’ destiny which became a target. Figuratively speaking, the bullet ricocheted at its lethal whim, giving the feeling of utmost desperation, failure…even death. Never did I disagree with his heartfelt issues. Too easy to imagine how much he’d suffered, one more of my main concerns was how he’d be able to cope with more pressure. Hadn’t this guy had enough? Apparently not because the welfare of his mostly female team was a constant worry. Trying to put right the wrongdoings of others regardless of all the hurdles, James’ selfless job is to prevent injuries. Yet I still felt like I was walking on tenterhooks since a new day meant a new challenge in hazardous terrain…nothing’s ever straightforward.
I was a tad impatient to see how the gal who had everything but nothing would stomach the bitter surroundings she was thrown into against her will. At the beginning of the story, my opinion of Arabella wasn’t that high. She came across to me as an attention seeker with a rebellious streak and a live and let live attitude. One of her many outrageous actions caught her between a rock and a hard place, the punishment dished out leaving no room for negotiation. A lesson had to be learnt…hmm, but would the development of events be beneficial? Interesting. I honestly thought she’d be in for the worst awakening of her life, especially seeing as she’d been handed everything on a silver platter. Did I underestimate her? Well, yes! She literally caught me off-guard and everyone who worked with her, too. Not Clay though. This guy saw the best in her a mile off.
Would Arabella at the very least, be able to make friends with James? It wasn’t difficult for me to see how she felt about this guy who guarded his feeling, whose nonchalance towards her, hurt. The attraction which does go further wasn’t all fireworks and butterflies, either. If you’re prone to getting teary-eyed like me, you’ll need to have a tissue or three handy as there are a couple of really touching scenes in this slow-burn romance.
But what I found captivating was the author’s descriptive account of what goes on behind bomb-damaged zones and how a nonprofit organisation dealt with issues such as technical manpower, coordination and equipment. It is a real eye-opener, bringing home to the reader just how the lack of intervention from the right places is. Her knowledge is shared with the readers in clear lingo and I have to add that her storytelling from a dual perspective is true to her spoken word as she’s only used Americanisms when necessary. I loved the banter between James and Clay. And the attention given to her characters not only drove the story forward at a very agreeable pace, but also transported me to a world which hopefully one day will be safer. Bravo, Harvey-Berrick!
Reviewed by Anna on behalf of KFF
At last, we can now find out what happened to James after the tragic ending in book one, Tick Tock. The first book made me so sad and my heart broke for James. If you haven’t read Tick Tock, I strongly recommend that you read it first.
Eighteen months after that tragic event in book one, we find James still grieving for his loss. His career and the love of his life are gone and he is still plagued with nightmares and drowning himself on alcohol. Thankfully his friend Clay got something up his sleeve that might just break James’ downward spiral. Will James finally get to live his life again and find happiness?
What I love about this author is that she packs her story with so much information and technical details on whatever the subject is, I end up feeling like I took a short course on EOD lessons 101 and I love it! In this case, the HALO Trust and its mission is the main subject alongside James’ story. The introduction of Arabella as James’ new love interest is the complete opposite of Amira from the previous book and she is a welcome and refreshing change. To be honest I felt that Amira loved her “mission” more than she loved James one of the reasons why I wasn’t keen on her. Although Arabella started out as a fluffy, privileged socialite she later on develops a backbone and changed her life for the better. She is a good influence on James and although theirs is a slow burn romance I felt it sets the perfect pace.
The author whilst giving us James and Bel’s story also as an added bonus educates us on the after-effects of war, the victims and the ugly government politics. James and Arabella’s story not only entertains but also educates and is uplifting. I almost cried when he finally broke down and shed tears, I felt his pain through the pages of the book. That’s how powerful the words of this author are, so well written and never disappoints. I am so glad that we finally get the closure to James’ story and we also get to see the other characters, Clay and Zara. This book is really the bomb (no pun intended)! I highly recommend it.
Writing is my passion and my obsession. I write every day and I love it. My head is full of stories and characters. I’ll never keep up with all my ideas!
I live in a small village by the ocean and walk my little dog, Pip, every day. It’s on those beach-side walks that I have all my best ideas.
Writing has become a way of life – and one that I love to share.