I love military romance so whenever a review request comes across for one, I almost always jump on it. I’m always sad that it’s not a super popular sub-genre because it tends to ring all my bells – tortured hero/heroine, discipline & honor taught from military, uniforms and suspense. This book certainly hit all those notes. This is the second book in the Sons of War series. I did not read the first one but did not feel lost.
Petr Khavalov is starting to come back to life two years after the war took his twin brother’s life and one of Petr’s legs. He has adapted to his new life (and prosthetic leg) fairly well by giving school talks to kids and remaining in active duty by recruiting. One day, while giving a talk at the local high school, a boy named Todd asks questions that pique Petr’s curiosity about the young man’s home life. Petr doesn’t pay it much attention until he runs into Todd at the local diner. Petr wants to help the troubled boy find some stability and offers to introduce him to a martial arts class; however, getting Todd’s sister to agree to it is another matter.
Claudia knows that her brother needs help. She desperately wants him to have a normal life with friends and activities but she can’t risk them being found again by “The Monster.” Even though Petr seems like a kind man that is heavily involved in their small community, Claudia can’t bring herself to trust the handsome stranger despite the pull she feels towards them. If Petr has learned anything out of his recent tragedies, it’s how to wait. Petr steadily wears Claudia down until she begins to accept Petr’s help and involvement in their lives.
This is a very slow burn of a romance. In fact, I thought it was too slow as Claudia didn’t accept Petr until nearly 60% into the book. It is understandable that it would take a bit for them to get together given their emotional insecurities – Petr with his leg and Claudia with her past relationship – but there wasn’t enough tension for me. It was just Petr waiting, day after day, for Claudia to say yes and Claudia just not being able to let go.
I thought they were a sweet couple even if it was only brief that they were together. Petr gave both Claudia and Todd stability and, in return, they gave him some sense of family back. I really enjoyed Petr’s father, Baba. He was a crack up.
Overall, this was a sweet romance with an enjoyable storyline. I just wish the pacing was a bit stronger.
*ARC provided by Barclay Publicity
Click to purchase: Amazon
by Lizzie FordRelease Date: January 6, 2015