Series: Delta Team Two #2
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Setting: Killeen, TX
Also in this series: Shielding Gillian
Also by this author: Protecting Cheyenne (SEAL of Protection #5), Justice for Mackenzie (Badge of Honor: Texas Heroes #1), Protecting the Future, Rescuing Rayne, Justice for Corrie, Shelter for Elizabeth, Rescuing Emily, Justice for Boone, Rescuing Harley, Shelter for Adeline, Marrying Emily, Claiming Grace, Rescuing Kassie, Protecting Kiera, Claiming Alexis, Shelter for Sophie, Rescuing Bryn, Justice for Erin, Claiming Bailey, Rescuing Casey, Claiming Felicity, Justice for Milena, Rescuing Sadie , Rescuing Wendy, Shelter for Blythe, Defending Allye, Defending Chloe, Securing Caite, Defending Morgan, Rescuing Macie, Defending Harlow, Claiming Sarah, Shelter for Koren, Securing Piper, Defending Everly, Securing Zoey, Shielding Gillian, Securing Avery, Trusting Skylar
When Kinley Taylor witnesses what was possibly the last few minutes of a young girl’s life while in Paris, she realizes exactly how alone she is in the world. The only person she has to turn to for help is the one man who she feels is completely out of her league.
Gage “Lefty” Haskins liked the personal assistant the first time he met her. And after spending an afternoon in Paris with her, he likes her even more. But when she shows up in Texas, on the run, and desperately in need of help, he’s determined to keep her safe.
But the person after Kinley is patient, and determined to get to her no matter who is protecting her.
Shielding Kinley continues the Susan Stoker tradition: Woman in trouble turns to military men for help. I actually enjoy this trope, and enjoy the various worldly settings Stoker uses. I did finally put my finger on what has bothered me about this and other Stoker books; more on that in a few.
Kinley is an assistant to a political figure who happens to be a real asshat. He isn’t just an asshat to her though, turns out he is a creepy pedophile asshat too. Kinley gets a little too close to discovering what he and an ambassador might be involved in and now there is a hit on her.
I liked Kinley. She was a foster kid, so she has that constant need to please others and always be helpful. It’s sweet but at times can make her seem naive. She is smart and savvy too and isn’t one of those “too stupid to live” type heroines. When she finds out she is being chased, she makes smart decisions!
Lefty/Gage is a Delta Force soldier who meets Kinley on assignment and feels a connection. She ghosts him (for her own psychological reasons) but he can’t let it go. I appreciated his tenacity without being a creepy stalker.
So, in all of these books by Stoker, the plot is pretty much the same. And there has always been something about it that I didn’t love, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Well, in Shielding Kinley, I figured it out. Its the super awkward conversation between the heroine and the hero + his entire team early on in the story. Its always super intense about feelings and where your head is at and stuff like that. Reading it in this book, I had transference cringe. Here is this girl who doesn’t know these people (on the Delta team) at all and they are bombarding her with SUPER personal questions while the one guy she does kind of know (but barely) is holding her/claiming her. Its so cringey! The awkwardness rolls off the page for me. Even thinking about it now is making me cringe. Its just so forward and uncomfortable. I don’t find it the least bit romantic.
Having said that, obviously lots of readers don’t feel that way because her books are always best sellers. I enjoy the trope and will continue to read the books, but this type of scene happens in almost all of them. I think I will just start skipping that part! If you like the danger of a romantic suspense, you will love Shielding Kinley.
- POV: 3rd
- Tears: no
- Trope: military, on the run
- Triggers: View Spoiler »Kinley was physically abused as a child. « Hide Spoiler
- Series/Standalone: standalone
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »no « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »yes « Hide Spoiler