On the Loose
by Tara Janzen
Book 7 of Steele Street
He's a special agent who never loses his cool.
She's the heat-seeking missile headed straight for his heart.
Keeping cool under pressure is the credo C. Smith Rydell lives by. That’s why he was handpicked by the Special Defense Forces for a mission few men survive. So why has the ex-DEA superstar been reassigned to Panama City, playing bodyguard to a blond in a black string bikini? Except Honey York isn’t your average pampered socialite. She’s the woman Rydell caught smuggling cash into El Salvador four months ago. And now she wants him to take her back.
All Honey has to do is find the guerrilla camp, deliver the goods, and get the hell out of the jungle—all in forty-eight hours. Only one man is up for the job. But sharing an unforgettable one-night stand was nothing next to being stranded with Rydell on some third world mountaintop. And with bullets flying and all hell breaking loose, now is not the time for passion. As if these two could possibly resist it….
Not a whole lot to say about On the Loose except that it was just as absurdly entertaining as the previous six books in this series. I'm glad I jumped back into Steele Street.
The difference between this book and the previous books, however, is that there really was a semblance of a plot, even if I'm still not sure what it was. There was a direction, a conflict, a story, and a strange little romance with two people who didn't really make sense in real life.
But I'll be damned if I didn't really admire and enjoy the presence of Honoria York-Lytton. This girl has all the public, stereotyped makings of a bimbo socialite; but who turns out to be much more intelligent, and much more insightful than anyone gives her credit for. With the name "Honey" and her consistent appearances in the society pages that splash her around as just another Paris Hilton-type, no one would ever take a second glance at her and think that she's capable of so much more than partying, spending money, and setting fashion trends.
As C. Smith Rydell had put it, it takes a lot of forethought and guts just to pull all the adventure she ends up pulling, both in this current story line as well as the previous book's story line. Little bits of pieces of her actions and behavior really DOES contradict her pampered, Park Avenue Princess image, and I loved that it gave us a better insight of this girl than even I had gotten from the introduction of her in the previous book.
This woman doesn't make any sense on a societal level, but in some ways, it's kind of nice that she doesn't make any sense. If any of my opinions make any sense...
As for our hero, Smith... I suppose he's just your typical military hero with the penchant for neanderthal-like behavior. I liked him enough, but not enough to wax poetic about him.
Meanwhile, the drug lord, Alejandro Campos, was a lot more interesting to follow--which I'm glad about, since he'll be our next hero in the next book, along with Lily Robbins, the school teacher who decided to take a sabbatical and ended up running for her life and then into Campos's life.
That will be an interesting pairing.
Overall, On the Loose is a book that can be quite enjoyable, exciting, and entertaining if you don't give it too much thought. Truth be told, it DID drag for a good while, especially whenever we hopped back and forth outside of Rydell and Honey's story tangent--there might have been entirely too much going on in this book.
But it was a fun time, so I'm not complaining.
On a side note, there was a lot less about cars and guns in this book than there has been present among previous books. Though I suppose it's a little hard to talk shop about cars or guns when our main couple are in the middle of espionage.
Roll #32: Luxury Tax says: "Read a book where someone gets married, with jewelry on the cover, or where any character is a millionaire/billionaire!"
The heroine is a wealthy socialite, millionaire heiress.
Page Count: 403
Cash Award: +$15.00
Updated Bank Balance: $254.00