Review: Protected by Lexi Blake (Masters and Mercenaries #16.5)

Note: An advanced reader copy (ARC) was provided by the publisher via InkSlinger PR.

After meeting Wade Rycroft in Say You Won't Let Go by Corinne Michaels, the fourth book in the Lexi Blake Crossover Collection released earlier this year, and getting a bit of an idea of what kind of story he had to tell, I was definitely looking forward to finally reading the novella Lexi Blake had in store for him. Protected is part of the author's highly popular Masters and Mercenaries romantic suspense series and does have recurring characters from past releases, but this can be read as a standalone. I should know because I still need to work my way through all those previous other novels and novellas but I was still able to fully enjoy Wade Rycroft and Geneva Harris's second chance love story, which was packed with romance and suspense and all the goodness in between.

Wade Rycroft and Geneva Harris were only in high school when they fell in love, but they knew that this was the kind of love that would last them a lifetime. They had plans for after graduation, but all that changed when Wade heads off to boot camp expecting to be reunited with Genny in ten weeks' time and instead learns that she's married their hometown's golden boy. A decade and a half later, Wade is back to attend his brother's wedding, and he refuses to allow his distaste of seeing Genny wreck the day for him. But Genny needs his help and as much as she knows how much she hurt him fifteen years ago, there are things that Wade has no knowledge of--things that led to both their hearts breaking and Genny to be forced into a life that broke her spirit. She needs to keep her son Asher safe, but even though Wade agrees to protect them, who'll protect their battered hearts from falling again?

Whatever assumptions I had of this novella--which I confess were based solely on what I read from the blurb--were blown out of the water once I dove into Wade and Geneva's story. There's quite a bit of angst that goes on between these two, which is perfectly understandable given everything that they had to deal with from the moment that Genny made the only decision she felt she could when they were both eighteen. A lot has happened and there's a fair bit of resentment on both their parts for how everything played out. I liked these two a lot, but I must confess that Ash was the most endearing character in the book and the men and women of McKay-Taggert Security and Miles-Dean, Weston, and Murdoch - An Investigative Agency were wholly entertaining. While this does end in a happily-ever-after for Wade and Genny, readers are given a glimpse of what awaits the men and women of McKay-Taggert as the series is set to spin-off in a few weeks' time. So exciting! 4.5 stars go to Protected. ♥

Date Read: 22 July 2018

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