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Musings and Ramblings

Of a self professed bookworm and geek girl.

Review: Jae's Assignment by Bernice Layton (@samhainpub, #bernicelayton)


Series: None
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Published: May 31, 2016
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Length: 242 pages

I was excited when I saw this book. A female FBI agent being the saver instead of the savee? Hells Yeah!  As far as I'm concerned, we don't get enough of the woman being the ass kicker in romances today. Woman are just as capable as men, and our romances should reflect that.

Once I got into the book, I discovered that the female lead is a woman of color. I was startled for a minute, mainly because the cover is ambiguous enough that you don't really notice skin color.  *Applause* Here's to us all becoming color blind and choosing a story about character, not race. Nicely played, Samhain.

There was also a very well thought out and intricate plot. The action moves along at a pretty good clip and though there were a lot of moving pieces, the story stayed on point and kept things progressing nicely.  We knew who the bad guy was early on, and parts of his plot, but not all the pieces. That was strung out throughout the story, keeping you guessing and wondering. All the characters were well rounded and complex, creating a very believable world.  There was a lot to like about this story.

So, what didn't I like?  First off, not enough dialogue.  Pages and pages of being told things. Person A did this, and Person B did that. Person C goes here and Person D went there. Stop telling me.  Let the character's talk to each other and by extension, to me. Here we have this strong, sassy, smart mouthed, bad ass of an agent, and she spends more time talking to her herself than to others. *facepalm*

Another problem I had with the dialogue that was there, was that it felt very stiff. There was very little back and forth between the characters. It was mostly these several sentence long paragraphs, that felt nothing like a conversation.  Take the following for example:

“Let’s get something straight so there is no misunderstanding, you shithead. I’m an FBI agent. You are an assignment and it is my responsibility to keep your dumb ass alive until you become somebody else’s headache. But you do not come to my parents’ home or interact with my family, you understand what I’m saying to you?”

This starts well, but just keeps going and going.  I really felt our hero could have interjected, interrupted, just something, anything, to help create a joint dynamic. Instead, she rants at him, then he has this multi-paragraph explanation in response. Each one is doing their own mini soliloquy, not actually working together to create an exchange or discourse. It just felt too unnatural and stilted to work for me.

That being said, would I recommend this read? Absolutely. Many people don't have the nit picky issues that I do with dialogue, and there was much to recommend besides the dialogue, which is my personal foible. If you are looking for a romantic suspense with complex characters and a tight plot, give this book a look. I gave this book 3 stars for being an enjoyable read.

Netgalley and Samhain Publishing provided me with this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Trusting her is dangerous. Not trusting her could be deadly.

Jae Randall isn’t just another pretty face. She’s a trained FBI Special Agent who’s just been assigned to extract and relocate a witness.

It’s a no-brainer. Strictly routine. Until she realizes there’s nothing ordinary about this assignment—nor the handsome doctor she’s supposed to protect.

After five years under threat of capture, even death, Trevor Grant trusts no one. Least of all the beautiful, statuesque woman who asks him to dance—then informs him she’s his contact.

Before he can figure out whether she’s legit or part of the shadowy militia who’s after him, shots ring out. And Jae’s piece-of-cake assignment turns into a bloody, life-or-death race against time to find out who has betrayed them—and a losing battle to resist their electric attraction.

Warnings: Contains a gun-wielding, ass-kicking FBI agent with a gift for eloquent profanity, and a psychiatrist with a secret recipe every military on earth would love to get their hands on. Readers are reminded that when in doubt—or danger—always use protection.
Source: http://www.musingsandramblings.net/2016/07/review-jaes-assignment-bernice-layton.html