Review: Man of Action by Janie Crouch

man of actionTitle: Man of Action

Author: Janie Crouch

Mills & Boon imprint: Intrigue

Year of publication: 2016

The heroine: Omega Sector behavioural analyst Andrea Gordon

The hero: Omega Sector profiler Brandon Han

The blurb: At nineteen, Andrea Gordon’s life was forever changed. After proving herself instrumental in a bank hostage crisis, she became one of Omega Sector’s top agents. Four years later, her skill at reading people is unrivalled—until she meets fellow profiler Brandon Han.

Paired together to track a serial killer who has been targeting at-risk women, the two become entangled beyond the case. Their mutual attraction deepens as they get closer to the truth. But when Andrea’s own sordid past surfaces, they will both be forced to question everything about the assignment…and each other.

Standalone or series: Book four in the Omega Sector: Critical Response series, but can be read as a standalone.

The review: You know what I love about reading a book by Janie Crouch? I know I’m going to enjoy it before I’ve even read a word. This book was no exception. I’ve seen Brandon pop up in other books before and was curious enough to want to read his book.

Andrea Gordon is an amazing heroine. Brought up by an abusive, alcoholic aunt and uncle, she finally leaves at seventeen and gets a job in a strip club. She hates every minute of it, but does what she has to do to survive. When she goes into a bank one day and gets an uneasy feeling about three men who’ve entered, she leaves immediately – and becomes the last person to leave before they take the bank hostage.

When she overhears the authorities talking about storming the building, she realises they don’t know about the third man. She approaches Steve Drackett, the Omega Sector director, and Grace Parker, the psychologist, to tell them about him, and something about her intrigues Steve enough that he and Grace seek her out after the crisis is over. Andrea is naturally gifted at being able to read people’s emotions and body language, better than some people who have been trained for years. When Steve sees where she is working, he offers her an out – do some testing and he’ll hire her at Omega Sector.

Four years later, Andrea has turned her life around. Her previous life is behind her, but she’s afraid of getting too close to her colleagues at Omega Sector in case they find out she’s a dyslexic high school dropout who used to strip. Brandon is aware of her reputation around the office as an ice queen, but he’s attracted to her for reasons he can’t work out. Having worked solo for the previous year since the death of his partner, he’s not happy when Steve partners him up with Andrea on a serial killer case. It makes sense – Andrea is excellent at reading people and one victim is from her hometown, so she knows the area well.

Home is the last place Andrea wants to go, especially with the man she’s been attracted to for years, but she has a job to do and she doesn’t want to let down Steve, the only man who’s ever given her a chance. While they’re there, they can no longer fight their desire and Andrea’s sordid past comes out. Brandon disappointingly doesn’t take it well at first, and I could have smacked him for it, but eventually he realises how amazing Andrea is to have overcome her past to be who she is now. They do eventually catch the killer, whose identity I did not guess, but not before Andrea is taken hostage. Brandon saves her, is injured, and they get their happily ever after. Read this book because Andrea is awesome, and I love reading about awesome heroines 🙂 Oh, it is must be said – that guy on the cover is hot!

Special Forces Savior by Janie Crouch

special forces saviorTitle: Special Forces Savior

Author: Janie Crouch

Mills & Boon imprint: Intrigue

Year of publication: 2016

The heroine: Forensic scientist Molly Humphries

The hero: Omega Sector agent Derek Waterman

The blurb: Omega Sector: Critical Response agent Derek Waterman is hunting some very bad men. After weeks of chasing cold leads, he has found the evidence that could expose the architects of a lethal terrorist bombing. But before Derek can start busting bad guys, he needs help from Dr Molly Humphries, Omega’s lead forensic scientist.

Molly works to retrieve the data — and overcome her debilitating crush on the super agent. And Derek carefully suppresses his mutual smoldering attraction, sure that his dark past will drive Molly away. But when Molly’s kidnapped, Derek will stop at nothing to save her. Even if a lethal enemy will do everything to keep him from doing so.

Standalone or series: This is part of the Omega Sector: Critical Response series, which precedes the Omega Sector: Under Siege series. It can be read as a standalone, but you will see crossovers of the same characters.

The review: I think Janie Crouch is fast becoming one of my favourite M&B authors! I got this e-book free for signing up for her mailing list and completely devoured it.

Dr Molly Humphries is intelligent, diligent and well-liked and respected by all who know her – but she’s also called Mousy Molly, because she dresses sensibly. She doesn’t wear make up. Nobody really seems to have any idea of Molly the woman vs Molly the scientist. What is well known, however, is her crush on Derek Waterman.

Here’s what nobody else knows: Derek feels the same way about Molly, but refuses to tell anyone because his job takes him to dark places. He fights evil, and he’s unwilling to drag sweet, kind Molly into his dark world. She is his light and he won’t taint that. So while he knows exactly how she feels about him, he won’t act on it, even though Molly sees the way he looks at her sometimes. Oh, and another thing nobody else knows about? They slept together three years previously, when Derek turned up on her doorstep drunk one night.

Molly gets involved in processing evidence from a major case Derek and his team are working on, narrowly avoids being blown to smithereens, and is then kidnapped by some very bad people. Derek lets nothing stop him in rescuing her, but it’s not over when they get home – Molly is being framed for the bombing at her lab, and someone high up in the government is involved. The conspiracy is cracked and the players are caught, but not before Molly is hurt by the man who kidnapped her – and you can just feel Derek’s anguish as he listens to her finger being broken over the phone.

Derek and Molly’s relationship was just wonderful to read, and in the end they refuse to hide how they feel from everyone else. Another excellent book worth reading.