Review: Protecting Olivia by Caitlyn O’Leary

protecting oliviaReviewed by Shelly

After reading Caitlyn O’Leary’s Trusting Chance (Fate Harbor, #1) I desperately wanted to find out more about the characters. Had I known that I would enjoy Caitlyn’s stories so much, I would’ve read her work much sooner. Protecting Olivia picks up about a year after the first book and has much more action, violence and suspense than its predecessor. Warning – I’m going to spoil Book 1 if you’ve not read it, because the characters from that story flow over.

Olivia Prescott, Sam and Chance’s sister from Trusting Chance, is the head of a charity organization, AHC, in Boston. She’s in the middle of an outreach program in the south (GA) when she’s attacked, beaten and left for dead. If you remember Chance from Book 1, you’ll remember that he’s a bit of a control freak when it comes to his loved ones, and Olivia’s one of his loved ones. Once she’s out of the hospital and back in Fate Harbor to heal from some pretty gruesome injuries, Olivia meets firefighters and best friends Joshua Parker and Ian Ransom. Joshua and Ian have just returned from out of town where they were fighting a twenty-thousand acre forest fire; there were two fallen heroes during that fire and Ian isn’t taking it very well. Where this story differs from many other in its category, Olivia meets the guys separately which proves to be the big instigator of her hurried return to her home in Boston. Unfortunately returning to Boston opens up Olivia’s chance for continued physical and violent attacks.

Joshua’s friendship with Ian goes back to childhood; another area where this differs from Sam, Chance and Josie’s story is that Sam and Chance aren’t already living together nor did they ever see themselves wanting forever with the same woman. But hey, things happen. When Joshua met and began a relationship with Olivia – I saw them falling for each other. It was good, fun, and quick. I didn’t have any real objections to the quick ‘I love you’ flying around other than they really didn’t know each other well enough for those words – but, oh well, I can’t have everything.

As Joshua and Olivia’s relationship takes off, Olivia then meets Ian and those two have an instantaneous and explosive encounter that leaves Olivia so shaken up that she runs. She runs, not because there are two guys involved here, but because she knows that they’re best friends and her betrayal of Joshua is unforgivable. I can’t even blame all of it on Olivia because both she and Ian knew exactly how the other was involved with Joshua. I lost some of my respect for them during that scene because I really liked them and wanted to see them handle that situation differently, but the story wouldn’t be the same without that, so…

Ian is a recluse. He’s always been one and after their last fire fight he’s having a hard time dealing with the lives lost. There’s a lot about Ian and Joshua’s friendship that was explained during Ian’s brooding time. Joshua is the fixer, they were both cops prior to being fire fighters, so they both seem to have an inane sense of service, but to me Joshua is more of a giver than Ian, as proven with Ian and Olivia’s betrayal. And to be honest, the author didn’t even address the betrayal part; instead she went a different route – Joshua and Ian are both unwilling to give up neither Olivia nor their friendship and decide that following in the steps of the other triads is a viable option. For this story that worked.

The chemistry between Ian, Olivia, and Joshua was smokingly fantastic, folks. I liked this story a lot more than I did the first, primarily because I thought Olivia was a better heroine. She’s strong and independent but still has some childhood vulnerabilities that drive her choices and actions. And don’t get me started on Joshua because this review could go on for a while, but instead I want you guys to read this and enjoy it for yourself.

Happy Reading folks!

Rating: B+/A-

Click to purchase: Amazon

Protecting Olivia
by Caitlyn O’Leary
Release Date: May 15, 2014
Publisher: Siren

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