BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Friday, December 15, 2017

Bea Reviews A Covert Affair and An Uncommon Honeymoon by Susan Mann

Series: Librarian and the Spy Escapade #2
Publisher: Zebra Shout
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: August 29th, 2017
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | iTunes* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

910.4 TRAVEL, adventurous
306.7 ROMANCE, secret
341.5 HOSTAGES, saving

A CIA librarian and her handsome spy boyfriend find themselves in the middle of an international incident when the Indian ambassador is kidnapped from a Library of Congress event.
Agent-in-training Quinn Ellington and James Bond Anderson travel to India, where the key to saving the ambassador is tangled up with a long-lost sacred library, a desecrated temple, and some very modern machinations. At least their cover as blissful newlyweds isn t too hard to pull off . . .
1. Spies sexy. 2. India intrigue. 3. Terrorism foiling. 4. Best friends weddings of. 5. Series The Librarian and the Spy.
I. Ellington, Quinn."

My Thoughts:

Librarians solving mysteries and having adventures seems to be a new trend lately.. In addition this series, there's also a new cozy mystery with a librarian heroine, Blue Ridge Library Mysteries by Victoria Gilbert. I hope we'll see more librarian heroines. It's pretty cool to see them using their knowledge of books, and their computer and reference skills outside a library setting. Quinn Ellington, a reference librarian, has joined the CIA as librarian and is in training to be an agent. While still in training she and her boyfriend James are sent on assignment to India.

I was pretty happy so see that they were heading to India as I've always been fascinated by that country and few genre novels are set there, that I know of anyway. As I read the story and the historical events, I became curious if they had actually happened or if Mann invented them for the story; turns out they were real with a little artistic license taken. While I've never been to India, the details felt real, and I enjoyed seeing India though Quinn eyes. If I ever get to India, I want to go visit the Sikh Reference Library as it sounds amazing.

Quinn and James are cute together and really sweet. They're young, maybe mid 20s; in fact James seemed a little too young for his job and the missions he's supposedly been on. At times I felt like I was reading a slightly more grown up version of the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew. If you are a serious suspense or action reader, this book probably won't meet your need. But if you like romance, humor, a little intrigue, and some action, you might like this book.

Some favorite quotes:

"It's part of the Kama Sutra written on palm leaves," he said and bent to get a closer look. "With illustrations, I see, although the pieces seem to be strategically places so we cant' see the, ah..." He stopped and tipped his head to one side. "Techniques."

"I could come here every day for weeks and not see everything. And that's not even counting if they let me in the book stacks." "They'd never be able to flush you out. I can hear the librarians now. 'We don't know where she hides exactly, but we put food out every night, and in the morning, it's gone."

Series: Librarian and the Spy Escapade #3
Publisher: Zebra Shout
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: December 26th, 2017
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | iTunes* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

Shelve under: Spies, Russian, Librarian Spies, Conspiracies.
Librarian and rookie CIA covert operative Quinn Ellington revises her honeymoon plans when she and her brand-new spy husband uncover a drug trafficking ring stretching from the Caribbean to St. Petersburg. Turquoise waters, white sand, and intra-agency relations provide a lush backdrop for raiding enemy strongholds, tailing movie stars, and dodging more than a few bullets. Meanwhile, Quinn's unique skills prove indispensable in luring a dangerous villain into the proper trap.

My Thoughts:

Believability is not this series' strong suit but its light, easy fun that's full of implausibilities. Despite being light and breezy, this story tackles the topics of drug trafficking and child slavery. 

Quinn and James get married and go to the Caribbean for their honeymoon. While there, they meet up with someone who gets them involved in trying to stop a ring of child slavers. The story moved quickly with lots of action. The topic of child slavery was sensitively handled, especially reintegrating them into their families. Mix in drug smuggling, a movie star, humor, and several implausibilities and we get a quirky, sometimes suspenseful mystery and romance.

Quinn is fast on her feet, a good researcher, and capable of rescuing herself. Her wits get put to the test while rescuing a group of children. She and James work well together and her treats her as an equal. I also enjoyed their banter and their flirting.

"That's the plan. You got your Glock?" She slid the hem of her skirt up her thigh to reveal the pistol held snugly in a lacy black holster. "Sweet Moses, that's hot," he whispered.
 
The copy I read was an ARC and it had several misspellings and wrong words. One wrong word pulled me out of the story at how absurd an image it presented. I hope it's corrected in the final copy. 

"From her secreted position..."

Now, presumably the author meant her hidden or secret position, but instead she has Quinn emitting the position from her body. Yeah, not a good visual.

Apart from that unappealing visual, "An Uncommon Honeymoon" was a fast paced adventure story with a sweet and steamy romance, humor, and hot topics.

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