[I received an advanced digital copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]
The Troubleshooters series and its author have been at the top of my list of romantic suspense favorites since I was first introduced to them in 2013. Thanks to my being so behind the times (the first in the series, The Unsung Hero, was released in 2000), I was able to marathon her books and read them all in succession one after the other, 1-16, along with some novellas and additional stories by Brockmann. I’ve been waiting for #17 and wasn’t disappointed. I was happy to finally be reacquainted with her family of characters. Brockmann is one of the few authors who can be counted on to consistently put out high-quality work.
The Troubleshooters series centers around either current or former Navy SEALs. The former Teams members are usually involved in private security, often doing clandestine or highly classified missions similar to when they were working for the government. The books are all linked by the various characters working together or through their family members, close friends, or loved ones. Sometimes they meet when they are on the job, oftentimes romances occur with people they are protecting or rescuing–although the characters are written to be strong and sometimes the “victim” ends up in a situation where they take part in their own rescue.
Even when you have to look past the real-life unlikelihood of a lasting romance stemming from stressful circumstances, the stories are always written so well that you do believe in them. Brockmann will bring up common issues or serious stressors in romantic relationships (i.e. infertility or when to come out of the closet) which show how these couples work through everyday problems, giving the reader hope that they will, in fact, have a true happy ever after. I absolutely love the comradery and the continued development of all the characters as the series progresses.
Some Kind of Hero centers around Lt. Peter Greene, who is a BUD/s instructor for Navy SEAL hopefuls. He’s one of the men whose job it is to torture the poor saps during SEAL candidate training and Hell Week. He has recently gained custody of his 15-year-old daughter, Maddie, after her mother was killed in a car accident. The mother kept them apart, so they are essentially strangers, and Pete is having a time connecting with his sullen teen. Maddie has become entangled in a theft and is now in the crosshairs of a murderous drug lord. She and her 20yo friend, Dingo, have opted not to get help from her father and instead have run away.
His neighbor, Shayla Whitman, divorced mother of two teenaged boys, assists him in trying to track down Maddie and Dingo. She is a novelist of romantic suspense, currently struck with writer’s block, but her wit and ability to think outside the box, along with their enviable communication skills, serves as a big factor in their mutual attraction.
Although their feelings for each other grows quickly, they are such a non-angsty and perfect couple, you know they will make it. Brockmann furthers that assurance by decisions they make about the progression of their relationship.
Brockmann has a way of using words or phrases that just suddenly grab you and either make you laugh or give you the feeling of immediate understanding.
When Shayla walked into the Navy SEAL’s house to find his living room filled with beautiful people, she knew with a certainty that she was merely the witty neighbor in this story.
Another example was comparing the pain of stepping on her sandal the wrong way during a clumsy and awkward moment to the feeling of a LEGO on your bare arch in the dark of night. (Relatable to anyone else but me??) At one point she uses the phrase, “…she released the crazy krakens in a verbal geyser…” which I thought was awesome imagery.
Do I have to come out and just say it? I love Suzanne Brockmann. I love the Troubleshooters series. I recommend this book and I sincerely recommend starting with the first book and reading this series in order. I can think of characters from this series alone (Max and Gina, Jules, Sam and Alyssa) who are all-time favorites of mine. I docked the final 1/2 star on my rating simply because the beginning of the story didn’t sound like Brockmann to me at first, but once it got rolling, then I felt like “she’s back”.