Review: Singe by Aly Martinez (Guardian Protection #1)
Note: This ARC was provided by the author via TRSoR Promotions in exchange for an honest review.
Jude Levitt and Rhion Park’s first meeting was a literal baptism of fire, setting the stage for the next four years. They may have been separated by distance and circumstances, but they were bond from the moment Jude saw Rhion shouting for help as the flames consumed her family home around her. Their lives were forever changed from that point forward, becoming a part of each other’s psyches without the other knowing it. When they see one another again, Jude is now twenty-nine and is no longer a police officer, having accepted the position as a bodyguard with Guardian Protection. He still has vivid dreams of the young woman he’s nicknamed “Butterfly”, still wishing he had been able to be quicker, more courageous in order to spare her any damage.
Rhion, on the other hand, is a living canvas of art, her scars camouflaged by ink as she works through her fantasies of her savior through inspired fiction. There hasn’t been a day that’s passed wherein she didn’t think of Jude and wondered what he may be doing. When she finally sees him, it’s at a less than ideal time, with someone else from her past reminding her that he has no intention of going away. And then things are said and done that are forgotten within the haze of alcohol. They’re torn between pursuing their burgeoning feelings and dousing the fire of attraction—and more—but denying the messy truth that they belong together becomes near impossible. When danger threatens Rhion, will Jude have his head or his heart making decisions?
Save for one series and her debut release, I’ve read and loved Aly Martinez’s other books. She writes with an emotional intensity that exemplifies just how complicated the lives that her main characters lead. Her books have become personal favorites, even if it does mean that I’ll end up having my poor heart squeezed within an inch of its life from the complexities and upheavals that are bound to be encountered in said books. It actually took a conversation with a friend who happens to be as much of a bookaholic as me to make me realize that Guardian Protection is actually a spin-off of her Fall-Up series—which I adored—as well as the one series I have yet to read, Wrecked and Ruined. I can’t believe I actually forgot about Aiden Johnson. Bad bookaholic!
In the case of her new series starter, Singe, Martinez offers up a romantic suspense read between two characters who have what I consider one of the most memorable fictional first meetings I’ve ever come across. I really liked Jude and Rhion, who had this palpable chemistry between them. The aforementioned Aiden Johnson, a fellow bodyguard with Guardian Protection, was someone you can’t overlook and he, along with another bodyguard and Rhion’s best friend, have me curious as to how the dynamic is going to be and if I was simply seeing things and my assumptions are going to end up making an ass out of me. The cast of characters plus the inter-relationships were my favorite things about this story and they’re enough to keep me interested with this new series.
As much as I liked the characters, though, I did have issues with how the story was presented. For the first few chapters, I felt as if I was missing something vital to the story, like I needed more information prior to getting to that point. There was also a lot going on, what with Rhion’s former stepmother, stepsister, and estranged brother and then her need for writing books that she doesn’t publish plus Jude’s issues with his ex-wife, concern for his stepdaughter, and sibling-like rivalry with Aiden. The romance and the suspense were undeniably there, but the story did feel a bit cluttered, with just a tad more than necessary being thrown the readers’ way. Still, I did enjoy reading the four-starred Singe and I will be going forward with the Guardian Protection series. ♥
Date Read: 06 February 2017
Learn more about Aly Martinez.