Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Honor Reclaimed (HORNET #2) by Tonya Burrows

Former Marine sniper Seth Harlan is determined to prove that he can still do his job despite his ongoing battle with PTSD. When an old friend contacts HORNET to rescue a black ops soldier, Seth's stability is strained. He knows all too well what it's like to rot inside an enemy camp, praying for rescue and waiting for death. And he's not about to leave a man behind.

Photojournalist Phoebe Leighton just stumbled into the middle of an arms deal. Teaming up with a ragtag team of mercenaries is the last thing she wants to do--especially when she realizes Seth Harlan is assigned to the mission. He may ignite a passion in her she thought long dead, but Phoebe's hiding a secret that could destroy him.

With a bomb in the mix, HORNET's mission is suddenly about a lot more than an abandoned soldier. Racing against the clock, Seth, Phoebe, and the rest of the team struggle to stop a ruthless warlord bent on power, revenge...and death.

Type: Romantic Suspense
Heat: 3 out of 5
Rating: 4 out of 5

Amazon | All Romance | Goodreads

Absolutely gut churning. Without fail Burrows just does me in with incredible storylines and characters that feel real down to their souls.  I swear. Every. Single. Time. Honor Reclaimed was an emotionally charged make-you-tingle-in-all-kinds-of-good-ways read that kept my heart racing as a deeply scared Seth faces the demons that haunt his every breath and finds salvation in the arms of a woman desperately trying to atone for the terrible decisions of her past that affected him as well.

The quick of it is that a soldier has been captured and Seth and his team have been called in to find him and bring him home. Something that brings all of Seth's demons front and center as he's forced to return to the place he was held captive and tortured for months at the enemy's hands. And where he'll run into a woman who spends her days fighting injustice with pen and camera and an ironclad determination to make the world a better place. It was quite the tale of suspense and romance for sure as their paths cross and they wind up facing off against a common threat.

Seth was such a damaged hero. There's pretty much no part of this man that doesn't have a layer of scars. Mental or physical. And he absolutely tore me up. He's gruff and abrasive and his confidence in himself after what he's been through is practically non existent. But he's a survivor in every sense of the word even if he can't see it. He can be harsh and abrupt but he's also quick to apologize as well. He's a good soul that longs to be whole again and just doesn't know how to get there again on his own. And lordy but he had my throat tight with emotion and my eyes tearing up on more than once occasion.

And Phoebe. Well. It takes a lot to impress me with heroines and Phoebe had a long way to go in my eyes for the role she played (before she knew him) in breaking Seth down even more once he returned home after his rescue. But the woman pulled it out and won me over. She's strong, passionate (though doesn't always think that through) and she's not one that backs down when things get hard or a bit messy.
He rolled up onto his side and took his cock in hand, stroking himself. She watched with hungry eyes, then covered his hand with her own and squeezed and his release jetted into both of their palms.

"Shit." He scrambled upright and reached for the sheet. "Sorry. Let me--"

Phoebe waved him off and sucked the remnants of his orgasm off her fingers. And, fuck him if that wasn't the most erotic thing he'd ever seen in his life. If he hadn't just come hard enough to see stars, he had no doubt he'd burst again from the sight alone. He fell onto the bed, exhausted, sated, and yet unbelievably aroused again.

"Phoebe, you're... I don't have words. Gonna kill me probably."
The two together were pretty...combustible. While it took a little while for things to get all hot and sweaty the excellent chemistry and tension between the two definitely made up for it. And they just meshed. I loved how they were with each other. That she brought him peace and loved this man for exactly who he was. For all of his scars. For all of his strengths and weaknesses. That she saw him for who he was and wouldn't let his surly moments scare her off. So many moments between them I found myself holding my breath as emotions tore through them. They were just touching and felt so incredibly real.

The secondary characters were amazing as well. I love this group of men that's been thrown together as a team (and that some of the characters from Burrows other series pop in now and again). They're all so dynamic and vivid. Now, I did want to smack a few heads with how they treated Seth for a while and not trusting him to hold his shit together but damn they're an amazing group and in the end all back in my good graces.

All in all...another knock out from Burrows. The suspense as they searched for their missing brother in arms and as Phoebe's endeavors to tell the tale of a group of young women caught up with her were exciting and nerve wracking. The romance was powerful and moving. And the characters ones that will just stick with you and have you wanting to revisit them again and again.

More Burrows on herding cats!

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