Review: Casualties of Love by Denise Riley

Reviewed by Shelly

This is a new to me author and I was a tad bit nervous before I read this – you just never know with new authors. It’s a theme that’s as old as time – friends then lovers with a little ‘I love you enough to save you from yourself’ thrown in for good measure.

Jessica and Tyson went to West Point together. Members in both of their families served and they both wanted to continue the tradition. During their time at USMA, they started as friends, good friends that had each other’s backs, and later moved on to something a bit more intimate.

Told primarily in flashback, there’s a simple goodness about Jessica and Tyson that I really enjoyed reading. The conflict is a bit underwhelming and stems around this secret that Jessica’s kept from Tyson but it gets the job done.

It’s been 6 years since Jessica stopped communicating with Tyson. During one of his missions in Afghanistan, Tyson and his team were hit by IEDs and suffered both injuries and fatalities. Jessica was one of the medics who got to them first to offer first aid. She’s completely surprised that he’s one of the soldiers and she does everything she can to make sure he survives. After the blood and limbs are cleared away and Tyson’s taken back to the hospital, he hears a voice and he knows that there’s something seriously wrong because he knows who that voice belongs to and there’s no way that she’s enlisted.

As a medic, Jessica’s seen a lot of death. She’s handled it well until she sees a bleeding and injured Tyson. After his surgery and while he’s recouping, she can’t stay away. She makes sure he’s medicated and comfortable and she knows that once he wakes up, she’ll be much better mentally.

Tyson wakes up to a live and in person Jessica. If not for his eyes, he can’t believe it because she left. She not only left him, she left the military so what’s she doing there?

Like I said, there’s not a lot of conflict here between Jessica and Tyson. They get on well, there’s no hatred of each other. There’s a bit of resentment from Tyson, rightfully so, but he’s not going to tell her to stay away. Jessica’s always loved Tyson. There’s nothing about him that she could hate or dislike and because she loves him she thinks that she can/should make decisions on his behalf because well… she knows what he would do if she didn’t.

Tyson’s always loved Jessica. He loves everything about her, but he doesn’t know everything about her, and Jessica’s biggest fear is that he’ll judge her negatively when he finds out why she left all those years ago.

As I said in the beginning the author pulls the heartstring with some typical scenarios, but those worked for me in this story. Maybe I was in the mood for an IR where the H/h didn’t see anything but the beauty of and in the other person. Maybe I just wanted a simple story of a boy who loves his girl and a girl who loves her guy. Nothing more, nothing less.

Happy reading folks!

Rating: B

Click to purchase: Amazon

Casualties of Love
by Denise Riley
Release Date: March 6, 2014

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