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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Soldier for Love by Brenda Gayle

Soldier for Love by Brenda Gayle
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full (213 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 Books
Review by Lilac

She’s his Commanding Officer. So why does he seem to be in charge?

Major Julie Collins should be on top of the world. Her long-sought promotion has finally come through and she has just been given her first overseas command. But when one of her troops turns out to be the handsome Native American who has just left her bed, everything starts to unravel. Lieutenant Matt Wolf’s exploits with the opposite sex are legend—if only they were true. His larger-than-life persona masks deep loneliness and isolation. He has every intention of obeying Julie’s order to stay away, but what’s he to do when she follows him and then gets herself kidnapped by a deranged voodoo priest? Suddenly, all orders are belayed as Matt mounts a one-man rescue, risking both of their careers and the only home he has ever known.

Soldier for Love is a fascinating story featuring two strong characters and a plot that will keep you enthralled.

Major Julie Collins has spent her career living in the shadow of her military family and has finally earned her own command helping a war torn country rebuild itself. She puts a lot of pressure on herself to succeed as she wants to prove herself to everyone. She is surprised to see that one of the soldiers under her command is a man she had a one-night stand with and can’t help but question his motives for sleeping with her. Past experiences have made it difficult for her to trust him as she believes he is only using her. Julie is a fascinating character who has a lot to deal including pressure from her job and pressure she has placed on herself. She lets her fear of being used hinder her relationship with a man who obviously cares about her and I found it interesting to watch her inner struggle with her feelings for Matt. She grows a lot throughout the story as she learns more about herself and those close to her.

As for the hero of the story, Lieutenant Matt Wolf knows no other life than the military as it is the only home he has ever known. He is attracted to Julie and when she is kidnapped by local rebels, he risks all to rescue her. He truly cares about Julie and is willing to respect the walls that she has put up to keep him out, but soon he can no longer resist his attraction to her. Matt is a great character full of strength and intelligence. He comes across as kind and caring and really knows how to deal well with others. His intelligence and cool attitude under pressure serves him well as it helps him in rescuing Julie from a deranged voodoo priest. He has his own doubts and insecurities which come across very well and add to this intriguing character.

The story touches on several issues such as gender, race, and family and I really enjoyed how the author demonstrated and handled these issues with Julie and Matt. They face a lot of self-imposed obstacles throughout the story including issues with trust. They both seem to have a lot to work out internally as well as together before they can move forward. The incident with the locals and Julie’s kidnapping lights a fuse to their relationship and gives them a reason to explore more.

The exotic setting of the story and local characters intrigued me and really added to this story and its interesting plot. Soldier for Love is a fascinating romance that I would recommend to those looking for something a bit different.