I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Hotter Than Wildfire
in Paperback edition on April 5, 2011 and has 335 pages.
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Second in The Protectors romantic suspense series. The couple focus is on Harry Bolt and the mysterious Ellen who turns out to be Eve.
After Rice’s Into the Crossfire, 1, I had had high hopes for this one. Obviously, those hopes were misplaced because this one was just lame. Maybe it was simply too close to reality — god knows it made me cry over and over again. However, it felt too full of clichés: the corrupt and brutal mercenary willing to do everything and anything; the suffering of innocents; the woman who flees without thought; and, the incredibly stupid, WTF-was-she-thinking walk. Gimme a break. With the life Ellen has lived for the past, what?, year?, and ooh, she just can’t bear having to stay inside a minute more? Despite what she knows about Montez? And she’s willing to endanger Nicole??
Then she follows it up with that last action…*big-time eye roll*… I think I’d’ve willingly shot her myself.
More and more I wonder about America’s need to reach out and help other countries when we have so many problems in our own backyards. We worry about the starving children in other countries and not about the ones here. About the sorry state of others’ economies, but not our own. There, in someone else’s backyard, their problems are not their fault, but their government’s or their corrupt something-or-other’s. Here, the problems of the poor are seen as poor judgment, bad choices, or lack of work ethic. Not my problem. And in many cases, this may be true. Of the adults. What care is taken of the children in bad situations? We all know the foster system is hugely flawed, although we appear to be doing the best we can.
Oh, off the soapbox, it’s the prologue of Hotter Than Wildfire that had me climbing it. It makes me angry, makes me cry, makes me terrified for children, for their future. Yet Harry got lucky with his fellow fosterlings. Boys who became men and remained brothers, at least at heart.
I liked how cool Ellen was under pressure when she freaks at her interview with Harry. How they track her down, however, that’s just a bit scary in how easy it is to find anyone these days in our high tech society.
The jewelry Kerry wore was amazing — and I’m guessing that we’ll be reading about its designer in an upcoming story.
I liked Piet’s assessment of Montez, but how he can hold this attitude and still do what he did to Kerry…god…
Ellen is too smart for her own good, and when she stumbles over those figures and her curiosity causes her to dig deeper, she becomes a woman on the run from a powerful man. It’s just too bad for her that Montez recognizes her voice and steps up the hunt.
It’s Harry Bolt’s turn when Ellen/Eve shows up on the run from a brutal mercenary leader. She’s the heavenly voice who has kept Harry alive through his year of recovery.
Ellen Palmer was an accountant by day, then a woman on the run, Irene Ball, who became the sultry singer Eve by night. Roddy Fisher is the talent agent who discovered Ellen. Kerry Robinson is the incredibly loyal friend in Seattle who gave Ellen the number for the hotline. Tom is her abusive husband.
Harry Bolt, a now former Delta, survived his childhood and an RPG in Afghanistan; his baby sister Crissy did not. It’s in memory of his sister that he pursues the path he’s chosen. Protecting women who are threatened.
Mike Keillor, an ex-Marine, and Sam Reston, an ex-SEAL (Nicole‘s pregnant; see Into the Crossfire) are Harry’s brothers and partners in RBK Security (it’s come up in the world; it was Reston Security in Into the Crossfire).
Mario Russo owns the Blue Moon bar in Seattle and helps people in many small ways.
Gerald Montez is a wealthy man, helped along by his own mercenary nature. He operates a mercenary group, Bearclaw, in Prineville, Georgia. One with a poor reputation amongst upstanding military men. Senator Manson is no longer taking his calls.
Piet van der Boeke is a legendary tracker, and he owes Montez.
The Lost Ones Fund is where half the profits go, helping women escape abusive situations.
The Cover and Title
The cover certainly leads you to think it will be quite erotic with a naked Ellen caressing an equally naked Harry. There’s a dreamy quality to the photo, probably Rice dreaming it will be a good story. Oh well…
The title could refer to either Harry and Ellen’s love or the situation she is fleeing, but in truth it’s what Harry makes her feel, Hotter Than Wildfire.