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“I can’t let you do this because… I love you! Phoebe, Jesus, I really do.” – Ian Dunn

What’s the best thing that can happen to you other than discover an author you want to build a temple for? Why, find out the very same author has also written tons of books that are rumored to be as good as the one you just read, AND that you have a series of theirs in your TR list, of course! I dare say 2014 for me started brilliantly merely by reaching the end of Ian and Phoebe’s story – or, well, what some of us like to see as the beginning of their new journey together.

Phoebe Kruger, a young – somewhat naive to the dirtiest ways of the world – lawyer, is supposed to help get Ian Dunn, former Navy SEAL rumored to be a jewel thief, out of prison. A nuclear scientist’s children have been kidnapped, and Ian is the only one capable enough to pull the rescue scenario off. But Ian is not exactly ecstatic to be free, as this goes against his own personal agenda. He needs to do time so that his little brother can be safe from a vile mobster. The last thing he wants is for his long con to be compromised – especially by a woman who drives his hormones and protective instincts crazy.

If you start reading this book and you manage to NOT fall in love with its characters, then something is obviously very wrong with you. I’m not trying to be offensive or anything, I’m just stating facts. For starters, the main couple was every bit the interesting, hilarious, kickass individuals that simply explode into pure epicness when combined together – it’s been so long since I’ve seen a couple like that, and even so, the maximum number is two times at the very best. So you can excuse me for being such a fan girl about both Ian and Phoebe.

Ian is sarcastic, childish when the situation turns stressful, and so deliciously Alpha-disguised-as-scum, it’s a miracle I didn’t hump my screen every time he interacted with Phoebe and put on the charm – oh, wait, that was about once every couple of pages. Whoops!

Any wonder why yours truly fell in love with him – or that Phoebe did the same, for that matter?

Which brings us to… Phoebe! Oh, this woman made me melt inside! One, she wore glasses. I repeat: GLASSES! In an action-filled story, full of car chases, and gunfire, and mobsters, and… you get the gist. And they were of the nerdy kind. What’s not to love about a woman who LOOKS like a nerd and packs a mean variety of sarcastic and witty comebacks? Not to mention the fact her humor was right up my alley, she was no pushover, couldn’t keep her mouth shut – takes “talk during sex” to a whole new level – and wasn’t a walking, delicate stick! Quick on her feet, and quite accepting – though her adjustability level was too high at times to be believable. A woman that was truly born to be by Ian’s side, I kid you not!

The rest of the “cast” was no less impressive. Each one of them with their own story and background, with their ups and downs, their strong points and flaws. All of them funny and quirky, and not at all boring. The story was not always focused on the main couple, which sometimes ends up in disaster, especially when you have so many characters to work with. But Mrs. Brockmann pulled it off like a pro – a result of her careful work in her “fictional crew”. See, when you have a team, a group, full of people that have depth and are very much real, and you make a point of treating them as such, you’re bound to be successful with many little plotlines in your main story.

Speaking of story, and different plotlines, anybody who readsDo or Die should at least agree to this: this book packs some serious action and breathtaking flashbacks. There’s not a single thread that is left alone. Not a stone left unturned. Not a speck of ANY character’s behavior and/or attitude that is not explained via their past, or connected with other past events from the lives of other characters. At first, they’re all spread there in front of your eyes. It’s a good thing Ian and Phoebe had all that sexual tension between them going on, so that it would take our mind off the question marks and prevent confusion. Slowly, gradually, they started drifting closer to each other, until we get a pretty clear image of almost everything that lead Francine to act like a bitch, Ian to keep secrets from everyone, hell, even Berto and his act of atonement made sense!

Before I finish this review, I have one more thing to say. I want to read Mrs. Brockmann’s other books even more now! If they are anything like this one, then I’m in for quite a ride. And I’m definitely hoping Francine, Martell and even Yashi and Deb get their own love stories!

***I was given an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The opinion stated in this review is solely mine, and no compensation was given or taken to alter it.***

RATING:

5cupcakes

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