Series: Omega Sector: Critical Response #1
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Also in this series: Man of Action
Also by this author: Man of Action, Infiltration, Survival Instinct, Daddy Defender, Armed Response, In the Lawman's Protection, Cyclone, Eagle, Shamrock, Angel, Ghost, Calculated Risk, Security Risk, Shadow, Constant Risk, Risk Everything
He has to shut down the terrorists or lose everything. Including the woman who's become a target.
Omega Sector: Critical Response agent Derek Waterman is hunting some very bad men. After weeks of chasing cold leads, he has found the evidence that could expose the architects of a lethal terrorist bombing. But before Derek can start busting bad guys, he needs help from Dr. Molly Humphries, Omega's lead forensic scientist.
Molly works to retrieve the data—and overcome her debilitating crush on the super agent. And Derek carefully suppresses his mutual smoldering attraction, sure that his dark past will drive Molly away. But when Molly's kidnapped, Derek will stop at nothing to save her. Even if a lethal enemy will do everything to keep him from doing so.
Special Forces Savior
I wasn’t sure what I would think of Special Forces Savior. I haven’t read anything by Janie Crouch but the blurb sounded interesting and I love romantic suspense. Books like this are the reason I push myself to try books that I am unsure of. Special Forces Savior was fantastic! You jump right into the action and it does not let up until the last page. Its well written-nothing is overly verbose so you don’t get drug down in details. Molly is the type of character I wish existed more frequently (maybe she does and I am just not reading the right books!). She is smart and in a science career. She is put together but socially a bit awkward. However, it wasn’t so awkward as to make her unbelievable. I mean, who doesn’t stutter around super hot guys? (Its not just me and Molly, right?). I didn’t care for Liam and Jon though. They weren’t exactly mean about Molly, but they do make fun of her a bit and it just makes them look like arrogant assholes. Derek wasn’t really likable at first-I mean, he shows up drunk, sleeps with her, then totally ignores her for 3 years! But, you start to understand him as the book goes on. Overall, its a great romantic suspense and I can’t wait for more! I hope this turns into a series!
- POV: 3rd
- Tears: No
- Trope: Military, Kidnapping
- Triggers: Kidnapping
- Cliffhanger: No
- HEA: View Spoiler »Yes « Hide Spoiler
Any Harlequin Intrigue books…then you will probably like Special Forces Savior!
Janie Crouch loves to read – almost exclusively romance – and has been doing so since middle school. She cut her teeth on Harlequin (Mills & Boon) Romances when she lived in Wales, UK as a preteen, then moved on to a passion for romantic suspense as an adult. Her favorite authors include: Linda Howard, Nora Roberts, and Elizabeth Lowell.
Janie recently relocated with her husband and four children to Germany (due to her husband’s job as support for the U.S. Military), after living in Virginia for nearly 20 years. When she’s not listening to the voices in her head (and even when she is), she enjoys traveling, long-distance running, movie-watching, knitting and adventure (obstacle) racing. Janie completed an Ironman Triathlon in 2014.
Most of all, she loves to laugh and smile and count her blessings. And her blessings are many.
I got the chance to ask Janie a question! I asked her to tell us what her 5 favorite jobs for book heroes are! Here is her response (and FYI-I LOVE her choices. Like, hard core love them!)
Thanks for having me here today. I love lawmen heroes! My 2015 Omega Sector series (Infiltration, Countermeasures, Untraceable, and Leverage) were all about undercover agents in a covert agency.
For my new series (Omega Sector: Critical Response) I knew I wanted to stick with law enforcement, but branch out from undercover work. Thus, the Critical Response Division was born. This non-covert section of Omega allowed me to write about all different sorts of law enforcement jobs, since the Critical Response Division’s job is to handle just about everything.
So my top five law enforcement favorites:
- Hostage Negotiator. Book #5 of the Omega Sector: Critical Response series (title still TBD) is about Joe Matarazzo, a hostage negotiator. Joe is actually a millionaire who doesn’t need to work, but loves being part of a team that makes a difference in the world. Writing about him and how he uses charm and wit to negotiate with perpetrators was a lot of fun – including a scene where he strips down to his skivvies to prove he isn’t carrying a weapon. Um, yummy.
- Profiler. Book #4 of my Omega Sector: Critical Response series MAN OF ACTION will release in June 2016. The hero, Brandon Han, is downright brilliant at getting into the heads of killers. Unfortunately, this also drags him into dark places in his mind, coming back from which is becoming more and more difficult for him. This delicate balance of light and dark made for a great story!
- Forensic Artist. I’m cheating a little here because it’s actually my heroine, not my hero who is a forensic artist in FULLY COMMITED book #2 in the Omega Sector: Critical Response series, which releases February 1. Sherry Mitchell is a gifted forensic artist, but unfortunately trying to help too many people without giving her mind a chance to recover in between has left her suffering from PTSD. Researching forensic artists led me to some fascinating cases. One of the major elements in how the criminal is caught in FULLY COMMITTED is based on a true crime.
- Hostage Rescue – Whereas a hostage negotiator tries to talk the bad guys down, the hostage rescue team moves in when talking isn’t going to get the job done. Liam Goetz, the hero of book #3, ARMORED ATTRACTION, is head of the Omega hostage rescue unit. This witty yet focused character was one of my favorites to write. A daring boat-rescue scene (to release girls being held by human traffickers) provided a unique setting for a good part of this story. This book releases in May 2016.
- SWAT. Who doesn’t love SWAT? The people who get the job done when no one else can. Derek Waterman, the hero in my current book, SPECIAL FORCES SAVIOR, is the lead SWAT team member for Omega Sector. Many of his skills stem from his time as an Army Ranger (thus the title). I particularly love this type of hero because of how they have to keep their head during a crisis. Derek normally has no problem doing that. But when the woman he’s been in love with for years is kidnapped by a sadistic killer, Derek has quite a deal more difficultly keeping his cool. I hope you’ll check it out here: http://bit.ly/OmegaCriticalResponse!
I’m so glad Janie shared with me because these jobs are awesome and I am super excited to learn more about the heroine who is a forensic artist! I love that her books all have intelligent, well educated females in technical or scientific careers! Smart girls rock! #NerdIsTheNewSexy!
From Special Forces Savior:
Pinned down behind his car with someone shooting at him from across the street was not how Omega Sector agent Derek Waterman had planned to spend his afternoon. He wasn’t exactly sure how he had planned to spend his afternoon, but this was definitely not it.
Derek slid closer to the ground as a bullet whizzed past his head and shattered the concrete behind him.
Whoa. Too close.
The saving grace in this situation was at least the entire block was empty of any innocent bystanders. No upstanding citizen had much reason to be in this section of West Philly. The less upstanding citizens had exited when Derek and his team had shown up, obviously law enforcement, and the shooting had started.
“Uh, what exactly was the intel you got on this place again, Derek?” Jon Hatton asked from where he was also pinned down a few feet away. Although highly trained in weapons and combat as all Omega Sector’s Critical Response agents were, Jon was primarily a behavior analyst in the Crisis Management Unit.
“What’s the matter? You having problems remembering how to use your weapon, Jon? Too much analyzing, not enough action in your life?” Liam Goetz, the other team member, smacked his gum and grinned. As a member of Omega’s Hostage Rescue team, no one ever asked Liam if he remembered how to use a weapon. Liam had pretty much been born with one in his hand.
“I’m just asking to see if there is any sort of plan here besides hide behind the car until the bad guys run out of ammo,” Jon responded. “Which, at the rate they’re shooting, should be sometime next week.”
True, the number of shots being fired at them seemed to be dwindling. The people in the building obviously weren’t trying to kill Derek and his team, just keep them pinned. But damned if this entire situation wasn’t starting to piss Derek off.
The empty apartment building across the street gave the enemy the tactical advantage. That advantage wasn’t something Derek, as the lead tactical team specialist of Omega’s SWAT generally gave up.
But the intel they’d received on this location had required an immediate response. Time for tactical analysis hadn’t been available. Thus, the taking cover behind their SUV as the bullets flew by their heads.
Derek had moved in on this location so quickly because it had been the first substantial lead pertaining to a terrorist attack on Chicago two weeks earlier. A bombing that had killed or injured over five hundred people.
None of the leads Omega had followed up on until now—and there had been hundreds of them—had provided any useful intel. Each location had been totally cold.
Another bullet flew by. This location definitely wasn’t cold.
“All right, to hell with this.” Derek looked over at Liam, “Jon and I will lay down cover-fire. You head around to the back of the building.”
Liam was grinning like an idiot. He loved this sort of thing, danger be damned. “Now you’re talking.”
Derek nodded. “Remember, we need them alive, if at all possible.”
“Hey, it’s me!” Liam actually winked at them. “I wouldn’t hurt a fly.”
Derek rolled his eyes and heard Jon groan under his breath as Liam made his way down the line of abandoned cars parked on the street. Still using their SUV for as much cover as possible, Derek and Jon began firing their weapons toward the abandoned building, hoping to draw any return-fire back at them and away from Liam.
But there were no shots at all coming at them from the house.
Derek looked over at Jon. “Again.”
Using the hood to brace his arm, Derek fired three shots at the house while Jon did the same from the rear of the vehicle. Still no return fire. Out of the corner of his eye he saw Liam make it across the street at the side of the building. No shots were fired at him either.
The bad guys weren’t in the building anymore; they must be on the run. Whoever had been shooting at them just a few moments ago was Omega’s best lead in Chicago’s terrorist attack. They were the only lead. And now they were about to get away.
“Move in, but be careful,” Derek said to Jon as they made their way forward, weapons still raised.
Derek was reaching for the knob of the door, Jon covering him from a cross angle when they heard a rapid burst of gunfire from the back of the building where Liam had been heading.
Both men backed out of the doorway and sprinted around the building without a word. Each of them knew that getting inside was secondary to helping Liam if he was under fire. As they rounded the building, Derek was relieved to see Liam unharmed, chasing a suspect farther down the road behind the apartment building. Derek and Jon continued running to catch up with them. Helping capture a known suspect was better than sticking around for what may or may not be in the house.
“Stay with them,” Derek told Jon, then made a sharp turn. He would run down a parallel side street and try to cut off the runner. He forced more speed out of his legs.
As he made a sharp turn around the next group of buildings, Derek saw the perp slowing down with Liam only a few yards behind him, Jon just beyond that.
It was obvious Liam was going to catch the guy at any moment, and the perp knew it, too. He fired his weapon at the Omega agents behind his back in some haphazard fashion without even stopping his run, but the bullets didn’t come anywhere near either of them.
Derek turned again and began running toward them.
“Stop!” he called out to the man, and saw distress wash over his face. The man stopped running altogether, sliding to an awkward stop.
“You’re under arrest,” Derek continued between breaths. “Place the gun on the ground and put your hands on your head.”
The man turned around, frantically looking for another way out, but didn’t put his gun down. All the Omega agents gripped their weapons tighter. Nobody wanted to shoot this suspect, he was too important. But they would if necessary. Especially if he turned his weapon on them rather than where it currently lay in his hand pointing at the ground.
“Put your weapon down,” Derek repeated. He nodded toward the ground with his forehead, as the man turned back in his direction. “Do you understand? All we want to do is ask you some questions.”
That wasn’t entirely true, but Derek just wanted to get the man’s gun out of his hand.
The man nodded and Derek eased his finger off the trigger just the slightest bit. But then, almost as if it was in slow motion, and before any of them could react, the guy brought his gun up to his own temple and fired. He crumpled to the ground, dead instantly.
Derek’s curse was vile. Jon rushed up to the man and crouched down to take his pulse at the wrist, but Derek knew it was too late.
Their best lead—their only lead—had just blown his brains out rather than be taken into custody.