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Review & Giveaway: RELENTLESS by Kaylea Cross

Update – Congratulations to Amy W., the winner of Kaylea’s giveaway!  Thank you to all who participated!

I am excited to share with you my first review on So Many Reads by Heather! She loves Kaylea Cross‘ romantic suspense books and I believe Rhys and his story in Relentless is her favorite. Another special treat is that Kaylea is giving away a digital copy of one book from her Romantic Suspense series (and yes, Relentless is one of them) to one lucky reader (winner’s choice)!  Just comment below to be entered in the drawing!

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1520609_10152864344189298_992732178_nYea! My first review! While I share a love of reading with my sister Amy I had never considered reaching out past the shelves to the e-book world to see if I could find new authors telling stories that would resonate within me.  For the last several years I found myself dragging through the library reading dozens of book summaries only to come up with similar storylines and lack-luster love interests that were often predictable and boring. I typically enjoy military-based romantic suspense that is action packed and involves unrequited love with impossible odds.

At times I can be found reading outside of this genre, it really depends on what new stories I have uncovered and might be waiting for me on my Nook!  I am that girl who continues to re-watch the movie First Daughter because there is nothing more amazing than falling in love- and if the hero is a Secret Service Agent capable of saving lives and taking care of his girl…well then, so much the better!  It is this love of strong alpha male characters that drew me to Kaylea’s books originally.  My first endeavor was Cover of Darkness where I fell in love with Bryn and her Navy Seal- Dec.  I didn’t think that I would love any of the other books more, but indeed I do! Enter Relentless.

This story is the fourth book in a series of five that I read a bit out of order.  This was not an issue because Kaylea does a great job of summarizing the plot-to-date without nauseating re-hash.  You can jump right back into the fray without feeling like you missed an entire month of your favorite soap!

Relentless is a story about Neveah Adams, a physician who went through an unbelievable ordeal in Afghanistan (see No Turning Back).  She is back on her feet stateside and hoping to put the past behind her by giving an important speech at a medical conference in Vancouver raising awareness for the Doctors Without Borders organization.  What she doesn’t initially count on is that the patient whose life she saved and monitored (albeit it on the sly), a very handsome Delta operator, Rhys Sinclair will be there too.  He joins the team that you meet in previous books who are also in Vancouver supplying security for the wedding of Christa and Rayne, the son of ex-CIA contractor, Luke along with keeping an eye on Nev.  What unfolds is a series of events that includes the arrival and acclimation to the environment, both physical and situational of the main characters to Vancouver. The guys get their orders and plan security while Nev prepares for her speech. What they had planned for yet hoped against is the perceived threat against Nev.  This along with some security snafus and a medical incident at the wedding keep the momentum of the story moving quickly.  Without giving too much away, like any good action flick there are intense scenes, suspense ridden moments where you are not sure which way the scene will go and agonizing insight into the terrorist underworld.  Along with the thrilling plotline are pockets of deeply moving moments where the characters connect and disconnect with one another.  The book culminates in the conference itself and the painstaking moments where both Nev and Rhys come face to face with their demons, both real and internal.

The writing in this book takes the reader on an exciting journey through the plot and most importantly, the relationships and connections that the characters have with one another.  Kaylea allows specific back-story details to emerge for those just picking up the story yet does not spoil the other titles by giving everything away.  She also encourages the readers to get to know each character in depth by deliberately doling out morsels of interesting information at just the right moments.  You get to hear from each of the characters how they personally feel about their own predicaments and then how the other characters respond to them.  This includes getting into the sinister minds of criminals and terrorists.

What makes this book stand out is the deep emotional connection that Rhys and Nev have throughout the book.  Kaylea writes her characters with so much depth that you feel like you are leaving your best friends when the book ends.  Her female characters are strong and do not need to be saved however, you want them to find their other half and to find completeness and fulfillment.  You want the relationship between Rhys and Nev to grow and Kaylea does not disappoint. Rhys is written not only with a healthy dose of “alpha” followed up by a double helping of “butt kicking abilities” but with heart and soul.  He is a man with a disappointing childhood and a chosen profession that helps him to retain the cool, aloof exterior that maintains a district separation from people in general.  He is not a person who has ever sought out personal attachment and doesn’t believe that he needs it.  He has always held something back to protect himself while being a rock for others including his twin brother Ben.  When we are allowed inside his thoughts and to experience his pain and learn what internally dogs him, the reader may find themself compelled to hug him!  Some of the scenes are so gut-wrenching and packed with sincerity that I found myself holding my breath as these were unveiled! Kaylea does a nice job of balancing the serious persona of Rhys with the witty, fun and often times hilarious Neveah.  She is an upstanding physician who’s life work is helping others and Rhys is no exception for her.

Kaylea has a profound ability in writing intimate scenes and I can honestly say that the ones in this book go beyond the typical physical indulgence.  The character development is so complete that you will find the physical acts of intimate relations at the periphery and the emotional connections burning at the core of the story and your heart.  You will find yourself rooting for Rhys and Nev at every turn and while they battle against evil.  If you must have a happy ending then you will not be disappointed. Kaylea does a beautiful job of ending Rhys and Nev’s story so that as a reader you feel completion but cannot wait to read the next book because there may be cameos of these compelling characters!

In conclusion, I feel that the book Relentless is a book unlike any other. Packed with intrigue and emotion while trying to figure out the “who dun it” plot line will keep readers from cooking dinner and folding laundry.  Once this series has been started you will want to get the pizza guy on speed dial and buy an extra set of underwear because it will be hard to tear yourself away to do any normal daily living activities. Kaylea in my opinion is simply one of the best authors around! She has written my favorite hero to date: Rhys. If he existed in reality Nev may have had a few more battles to fight- groupies! Get out and enjoy this series, I promise that you will not be disappointed! Thanks Kaylea, you officially rock and I look forward to reading many more of your novels!

Reviewed by Heather

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About the Book:

Title: Relentless (Romantic Suspense, #4)
Author: Kaylea Cross
PublisherThe Wild Rose Press
Release Date: June 11, 2010, 2nd Edition January 2014
Category: Romantic Suspense
Source: Purchased from Amazon
Buy: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / The Wild Rose Press

Book Summary:

Former Delta Force operator Rhys Sinclair defied the odds by recovering from a traumatic brain injury that should have killed him. Given the chance to repay the beautiful doctor who saved his life by guarding hers, he can’t say no–even if it means facing an unknown threat from the cunning terrorist his CIA-sanctioned team had been hunting in Afghanistan. The catch is, she can’t know about it without blowing their cover.

Trauma surgeon Neveah Adams is finally putting her life back together after her horrific experience in Afghanistan. Giving the keynote speech at a medical conference in Vancouver is her starting point. With Rhys there to watch over her she feels safe for the first time in months, and her biggest problem is trying to hide her intense feelings for him.

But Rhys knows something Neveah doesn’t. The terrorist who targeted her in Kabul is coming after her again, and he’s relentless enough to ensure all his past mistakes are erased with one final strike. Now that the nightmare from her past has resurfaced, Neveah has no choice but to put her trust in the one man who has the ability to break her heart, never knowing an assassin is closer than they realize.

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Giveaway:

To be entered into the drawing to win a digital copy of one of Kaylea’s Romantic Suspense books, simply comment below and tell us what book/author has really had an impact on you. Contest is open until 11:59 pm central time on Thursday, February 7, 2013. Winner will be notified via email first and then announced on website after confirmation.

19 comments

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  1. Edie Ramer

    Great review! When you love something, you really love it! This is the line that first made me want to read it: “When we are allowed inside his thoughts and to experience his pain and learn what internally dogs him, the reader may find themself compelled to hug him!” But your last paragraph sealed the deal. 🙂

    1. Heather

      Hi Edie! You are right, I loved it! Hope you do too! Great series. Can’t wait to read more!

  2. Amy

    My sister has always been a great writer. She is three years olders and was the one I always asked to proof any English papers. Although, that usually meant a lot of corrections on my part…

  3. Mary Scott

    I too enjoyed this book. The characters are not predictable and I always enjoy the tug and pull of strong personalities which the two main characters in this book demonstrate. The story line is not derailed by the romantic scenes which is important for me when recommending a book. While I enjoy romance in a novel the suspese is what keeps me returning. Great review by Heather and I too would strongly recommend the book and Kaylea’s other novels as well.

    1. Amy

      I agree about the romantic scenes not derailing the story. You hang on each of Kaylea’s words in her books!

  4. Melissa Limoges

    Great review! I absolutely loved Relentless and Rhys. *Le Sigh* 🙂

    1. Amy

      I think Rhys was my favorite, although it is a tough choice between all of Kaylea’s guys…

      1. Heather

        No decision! Rhys is by far the hottest! Followed by Dec, Ben and then Luke. 🙂

  5. Vickie Milizia

    I love Nora Roberts! Her books always inspire me!

    1. Amy

      I started out reading a lot of Nora Roberts books. I think the Bride Quartet series and her JD Robb books are my favorite.

  6. lscarchuk

    So many, I love Romantic Suspense so Marie Force and JD Robb are 2 that come to mind. For plain old romance it would be Nora Roberts and Jill Salvis as well as Marie Force. Have not read Kaylea before but would love to win the NOOK of the 1st Romantic Suspense series book, I alwas like to read in order. Thanks for the giveaway!

    1. Amy

      I just learned about Marie Force and have Fatal Affair on my Nook. I did read the first book in her Gansett Island series. JD Robb books are great and Jill Shalvis is one of my favorite contemporary romance authors.

    2. Heather

      Sounds like I have a few more books to pick up! I have read and enjoyed Marie Force as well as Nora Roberts. Thanks!

  7. Krissy Pettigrew

    I have been looking for a new series to read and after reading this review and all of these comments I am excited to start with this series. I am new to finding time to read a lot and with the help of Amy I have been able to find some great authors. I really enjoy Shannon Stacey’s books as well as Julie James’ and Lisa Kleypas’. I look forward to expanding my horizons to find new great authors. Thanks for all of the suggestions!

    1. Amy

      This is a fun series to read. Kaylea balances the romance and suspense very well in her books. Her books are the first ones in which you get to be in the mind of the villain as well which is very interesting. Makes for a good story.

  8. Amy

    Heather, thanks for sharing your sister’s blog with me, and after reading your review this is definitely a book I would enjoy. Can’t wait to read it!!!

    1. Amy

      Heather is definitely the writer in the family and hope I can convince her to write more reviews for my website!

    2. Heather

      I hope that you love it as much as I did! Good luck!

  9. Christy

    Sounds like a great read. I hope I win. Thanks Heather for turning me onto this site. Christy

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