Yes, she lives! I haven't fallen off the face of the earth. I finally got my turn for Force of Nature at the library. Woot! Love me some Suz. Can I just say, am I alone in this? I SOOO miss Team 16. In their Team 16 SEAL context on their Team 16 missions. There. I said it. Not that I don't like the Troubleshooters and the FBI stories, and I know that she has to keep writing fresh stories, but still...
Anyway, here's what I liked. Loved Ric. OK, I hated that he was going to do the porn star/psycho client right there in the office, when all he really wanted was to do Annie, but, aside from that one faux pas, I really liked him. He's a little more beta than her usual heroes, I think, but still with all the protective instincts. As with all Brockmann heroes, we really get to see inside his thoughts and feelings. I always enjoy that about her writing. (Yes, he cries, but not for the reasons you might think).
I loved Annie. She's kickass, yet still vulnerable. Sweet, but still strong. And I love that she didn't let Ric get away with anything he shouldn't have. I loved Ric and Annie's love story. It was laced with loads of humor, and rich with friends to lovers history. Sweet, sassy, and sexy.
Now the tough part. Jules. Because Jules gets his HEA in this book. A rough and rocky road to it. And, although it was well written, it was also a bit more unbelievable in a way. Robin's character just didn't do it for me for some reason. And Jules' vulnerability, while in other books has come off as loveable, here came off as a bit inappropriate. He was the team leader here, and just completely seemed to fall apart for much of the book. It was a shame, because their love story should have been all-encompassing; instead I felt a bit cheated for much of the story.
As for the underlying terror/crime plot - I was disappointed. It didn't seem to live up to Brockmann's usual standards. Junior was caracaturish (I know he was supposed to be that way, but it was still distracting), and it seemed thrown together as a device simply to carry the two romances. In other Brockmann books, the terror/crime plot line has always had a life of its own, and I really missed that here.
All in all, I did really enjoy it. It was great to read another Brockmann book. I've missed them. I do hope, though, that she gets back to writing what she does best - SEAL books in war zones.