Note: This ARC was provided by Harlequin via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Congratulate me, fellow bookaholics! I've finally read my very first Lori Foster book, and I loved it! Body Armor is a brand new romantic suspense series, and it's a spin-off of the author's popular Ultimate mixed martial arts romance series. This had the kind of anticipation I look for in the novels I read, especially when it comes to romance AND suspense. The author builds everything up quite nicely, and not to the point where you're thinking, "Well, that was quick!" or "Damn! Get on with it already!" And now I totally get why Lori Foster has the kind of following that she does. Her storytelling is enticing, her characters endearing, and the overall effect is entertaining.
Leese Phelps has made the transition from MMA fighter to bodyguard without any major stumbles. He likes working for Body Armor, and he's looking forward to doing the best job possible for his latest protectee, Catalina Nicholson. It may have seemed like the standard protection duty, but there's nothing standard about Cat nor about what--or who--it is she's running from. He's vowed to keep her safe from anyone and everyone that could be a cause for concern, but what if that happens to be the very person who hired them in the first place? To complicate matters even further, the undeniable pull Leese has towards Cat could become one hell of a dangerous distraction.
Catalina Nicholson has never wanted for anything, but six weeks ago, things changed, and now all she wants is her life back. On the run after overhearing a criminal confession, Cat finds herself seeking refuge in the arms of a man who has introduced himself are her newest--and hottest--bodyguard. There's no denying Leese Phelps is very different from the men tasked to watch over her before, but in a short amount of time, she's become as protective of him as he is of her. She's willing to do whatever is necessary to keep him and others safe from the clutches of the powerful men after her, even lie to him. The one thing she could never lie about is how she feels about Leese.
This book had anticipation locked down and in spades. I was totally into both the love story between Leese and Cat and the part that had them trying to remain more than one step ahead of the bad guys. I liked that Cat was more of the aggressor and that Leese was the one who wanted to prioritize and think of her safety ahead of anything intimate happening between the two of them. Leese's history as an MMA did make me even curious about him, so I've now got the Ultimate series of books on my to-be-read list since I'm assuming he was there as a supporting character, plus I've heard good things about the series in general, so why not add to my already lengthy list, right?
Aside from Leese and Cat--whom I adored--I also took a liking to newbie bodyguard Justice Wallington and Body Armor boss Sahara Silver. I'm not sure if these two are going to end up together, but they seemed to have gotten along quite well in this series starter. Her personal assistant, Enoch, and Leese's MMA friend, Miles, were also memorable supporting characters, and that was the thing with these side personalities--they weren't the focus or stars of the book, but they were unforgettable enough that I certainly wouldn't mind reading more about them as the series progresses. Under Pressure was a fantastic start to this already exciting series, and I'm giving it 4.5 stars. ♥
Date Read: 27 January 2017
Learn more about Lori Foster.