I’ve never given 3 and ¾ stars before. This one had me tied up as I loved the first half of the book. Rescuing Rayne starts with a chance meeting between Ghost and Rayne in Heathrow Airport, followed by some fun flirtation, and then the promise of a sinfully hot night together before going their separate ways. The chemistry between the hot Delta force operative and the sweet, sexy flight attendant sizzled off the pages and kept me turning them, ignoring everything around me.
Then about halfway, the story seems to ease up, becoming less sexy, more repetitive, with more talking about all the reasons to not to fall in love, rather than us seeing Ghost and Rayne actually fall in love. When we did get a glimpse of all the love tumbling, I was reminded of why I liked the first half so much. Sounds kinda complicated, I know.
After their heated one night stand, Ghost and Rayne go their separate ways, though neither really want to. Ghost has commitments to his country and his Delta Force team which he believes prohibits him from having the long-term relationship with Rayne that he secretly desires. Rayne, well, she leaves London knowing that she would have been happy with Ghost and I liked that honesty. Her belief that she wasn’t the right woman for him because she wasn’t sexy or attractive enough bothered me, but I understood the honesty in that as well.
Fast forward 6 months and Rayne finds herself in a bad situation (no spoilers) and needs the rescuing that the book’s title promises. It’s the post-rescuing part in which the book takes a (sort of) downward spiral.
As Ghost and Rayne face each other and their feelings, Rayne has to come to terms with the lies Ghost told her to protect his team and his mission. Ghost has to accept that he can have a relationship while being a special operations soldier. Sadly, these two conclusions take too long to happen. Maybe as a military wife I possess a lack of sympathy with Rayne’s drawn out “you lied to me” defense. Yep, she’s faced with a new lifestyle, but she spent part of the book teasing Ghost about being a “super-secret spy”, her reasoning as to why he wasn’t forthcoming with information and why he demonstrated badass tendencies. So, she understood the concept of not revealing important info. Ghost, however, has a bigger hurdle to get over: not wanting to draw Rayne into a lifestyle where she could be in danger, one that requires her to be alone for long periods of time, and all the other fun stuff that comes from being a Special Ops soldier. This is conflict is handled better by author Susan Stoker, but there was still one too many conversations about it between Ghost and every other character in the book.
There’s an awesome subplot about a tattoo which I won’t give away but absolutely adored and felt was a unique plot device. New readers to Stoker are introduced to Ghost’s Delta team who will feature in the rest of the series and were interesting enough to make me want to read them. We also meet Rayne’s best friend, Mary, who is a real firecracker and set to be the heroine in the series’ last book. She and Truck, that book’s assumed hero, is enough reason right there to keep going. For readers who have read Stoker’s books before, Rescuing Rayne has lots of familiar faces, but is definitely a standalone novel.
3 & ¾ Stars for Rescuing Rayne. Heat level: 4
Next up in the series is Rescuing Emily, which releases on July 19th.
I received this book from RockStar Lit and the author in exchange for honest feedback.
Rescuing Rayne was published in February 2016 by the author and EverAfter Romance.