Wednesday, June 24, 2015


Major Grace Samuels, a trauma surgeon deployed to Afghanistan, spends her life helping her fellow soldiers overcome disease and combat injuries. But her own wounds are harder to heal. Wracked with guilt over the death of a fellow soldier, she finds comfort in her only friend and appointed bodyguard, weapons sergeant Jacob “Sharp” Foster.

Sharp feels more for Grace than a soldier should, more than he wants to admit. When the team discovers a new, quick-to-kill strain of Anthrax, he tries to focus on the mission to find its source. He knows he can help Grace defeat her demons, but first they must defeat the deadly outbreak.

Sharp is Grace’s most loyal ally, but in close quarters, he starts to feel like more. She can’t watch someone else she cares about die—but she might not have a choice. The closer they get to finding the source of the strain, the closer it gets to finding them.

Release date: June 15, 2015
Biological Response Team book 1
Carina Press
Review copy provided by the publisher

Nikki's Review:

I was so excited to start reading this book. I have this morbid fascination with horrific, exotic diseases. I think I may be a closet dooms day prepper, but without the stockpile of canned goods! This book looked like it was going to satisfy my love for romance novels and my curiosity with a biological apocalypse. But it fell short for me. The action and military aspects were fabulous. Really great actually. I was just missing the romance. The love story was a definite second to everything else. I like the mushy stuff to be the forefront of the books I read. I didn't get that here.

Grace is an Infectious Disease Specialist with the US Military. Her job is to fight the invisible terrorists. Disease like Ebola, Marburg, and Anthrax. Some of the deadliest pathogens on Earth. She works with a Special Forces unit while stationed in Afghanistan. She has this great relationship with Sharp, who is all alpha male and her best friend. The banter between Grace and all the men in the unit is great. They tease her but she doesn't sit back and suck it up. She gives as good as she gets. The friendships are solid. Grace is battling some inner demons, some faults that she's carrying on her shoulders, as well as a superior officer who is an absolute jerk to her.

The Biological Response team is mobilized when a threat of weaponized Anthrax becomes a reality. Now starts the really good action stuff. Lots of gunfire and covert dealings. But I have to say, for a doctor, a military doctor no less, Grace is kind of a wimp. She's a freaking soldier and cries all the damn time! Her eyes are always watering with unshed tears, or a sob is trying to burst free. It got old real fast! Now I know, she's only human and has emotions that are hard to deal with. Sure. But buck up already, you're in the military. And her stomach issues. I swear she vomited all the time. Nausea was always going full throttle. She must have puked a half dozen times. Yes, she was scared or the blood was messy, again...she's a bloody doctor and a soldier! I was tired of her crying jags and yacking everywhere. I may have at one point, hoped she didn't survive until the end of the book.

I could barely sense any chemistry between Grace and Sharp. It just wasn't there. One minute they were all buddy buddy, and the next, he's got his hands jammed down her pants to, guess what...stop her from crying! He was trying to stop her from having a panic attack. Man, that woman was such a pussy. They shared a few looks, a kiss or two, but it didn't get my heart beating faster or even make me care. Yup, no delicious steaminess in this one. Not even a good dose of sexual tension.

So they save the day, of course. But not without half of the great secondary characters getting offed! That was a piss off, since I liked them more than Grace. Seriously, if you're looking for a well written action novel with a fleeting glimpse of a romance, this is for you. Julie Rowe wrote a great suspenseful military book. She can certainly tell a great story. But I just couldn't connect with the wimpy, barf ready heroine, or the lack of a real romantic element.

No comments: