Saturday 2 March 2013

ARC Book Review: Three Musketeers: Surrender the Dark

Book Title: The Three Musketeers # 1: Surrender the Dark
Author: Donna Kauffman
Publisher: Loveswept Harlequin
Format: ebook
Cost: $2.99
Pages: 240
How I got it: NetGalley
My Rating:★★★★☆
Erotica Rating: 
They call themselves the Three Musketeers: three lifelong friends, men who will put it all on the line in the name of honor and loyalty. Jarrett McCullough values those bonds as seriously as he values his job heading a covert group of operatives skilled in handling sensitive international information. But his current mission has suddenly gone very wrong—and he finds himself wounded and near death in the last place he ever expected to be. Rae Gannon is stunned to find her ex-boss bleeding from a gunshot wound, mere paces from her front door. It has been two years since her move to the remote Blue Ridge Mountains, where she tried to erase the memories and the pain she suffered from having been part of McCullough’s team. Yet as Rae tends to Jarrett’s battered body she realizes that the air between them is still sizzling with a slow-burning need. But this time there are more than just hearts at stake. The mission that almost got Jarrett killed threatens to put Rae back in harm’s way. And if they surrender to their desires, it may cost them their lives.

My Review:
It's a re-issue that has been updated for the times, this is the first time I am reading it however.  I read this book after the third in the series, so I got a glimpse of the characters before reading their story. I really enjoyed reading this book. It's emotional, the characters are well rounded and written in a way that makes them easy to love.  Of the three men who grew up together Jarrett is the one who goes into military intelligence, it's a job that suits him, it gives him something to look forward to and is a way for him to honor his father, his inspiration & hero.

It's a beautifully written story about the healing power of love, of knowing that there is one person in the world to whom you matter and who matter to you.  Rae got out of her job away from those she considered a family two years ago, when all that was important to her was tainted.  Lost, confused & broken, she retreats to the seclusion & safety of the mountains.  Using crafting as a healing therapy  she slowly comes to create her own haven & finds peace.

Then a little pup comes knocking at the door & with it her old world comes crashing back in.  She does what she has to do to protect the wman who trained her with the goal of kicking him out the second he's conscious  but it all changes and slowly they both learn to open up to their emotions and to each other.  It doesn't take long before the walls begin to crumble and in their place stand two lonely and world weary people who are battered by their fight for justice and the battles that has chosen them.

It's a beautifully written story that bring you in, this glimpse of Jarrett & rae was both heartbreaking & endearing, they both desperately wanted to belong to someone but feared sharing their world with anyone, because who else would understand what they need from each other?  I liked that the characters are well written, well rounded & fully vibrant. They clicked well, which made their sparing moments awesome & when they stripped themselves raw you just felt the emotion.

I loved it.   The emotions felt so real and were strongly described, the sense of growth, of love of belonging, just amazing. I especially loved that they were strong separate but choosing each other made them even stronger; which then of course made their intimate moments beautiful.

Because it's a re-issue some of the 'age' shows especially in the comment about women and equality and fighting in the front. Sadly even though this was written many years ago it's still applicable to now. It's an amazingly fast read as well, so make sure to go get it!!!
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***FTC Rules require I state that I received this as a review copy from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review**** 

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