Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Review & Giveaway: LOVING A WARRIOR by Melanie Hansen

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Length: 77,300 words approx.
Publisher: Carina Press


BUD/S: six months of the most intense training there is. It’s survival of the toughest, and Matt Knytych is determined to come out the other side a navy SEAL.

Distraction is life or death. And just the sight of former marine Shane Hovland is enough to shake Matt’s concentration.

Shane came to BUD/S training ready to prove himself—again. Semper Fi is forever, but he needs a new start. Not this dangerous heat with a man he barely knows.

Everything they’ve ever wanted is riding on a thin, punishing line. And they’ll have to fight for more than just each other if they want to make it through intact.

After all, the only easy day was yesterday.

Carra's Review

I’ve read two of this author’s previous works—Signs of Life and Unquiet—and absolutely loved them, so when I read the synopsis for Loving a Warrior and saw that it was about two guys going through SEAL training that fall for each other…that just flipped my “no brainer” switch.  I mean, how much more alpha can you get, right?  

You might think that would mean explosive chemistry and heat quite early on, but this was actually quite the opposite—a slow burn, keep-your-eye-on-the-prize story, where that prize was becoming a SEAL.  Both Matt and Shane placed the importance of that above all else, which left me a bit conflicted since for me a romance story should make the relationship the priority.  But these guys don’t quite fit that mold.  That means the intensity of the relationship and the opposing importance of making it through the grueling BUD/S training—as well as the life of a SEAL afterward—are at constant odds.

There’s a lot of detail in this story about the training.  A whole lot.  Enough that after a while it was really a bit too much…honestly, a lot of that could have been cut out without affecting the story.  And because there was so much, that means my mind would start to wander from time to time, so I kept taking breaks while reading to just get away from all that detail for a while.  

As for the physical chemistry between Shane and Matt, they had plenty of it once you get past the slow buildup of their relationship.  They also just GET each other in a way no one else has before—something they can thank their mutual dedication to becoming SEALs for.

I went back and forth for a while on my rating, and finally settled on 3.5 stars for Loving a Warrior.  If you’re a fan of M/M military romance where the emphasis on the military aspect is foremost, this will be one you’ll want to add to your library.  Though I normally salivate at the chance to read stories in this sub-genre, this wasn’t quite what I was expecting, and even with the epilogue it felt more like a happy-for-now ending than a happy-ever-after.  But then again, Shane and Matt didn’t really adhere to my idea of a traditional romance to begin with. This book is meant for readers 18+ for adult language and sexual content.

About the Author

Melanie Hansen doesn’t get nearly enough sleep. She loves all things coffee-related, including collecting mugs from every place she’s visited. After spending eighteen years as a military spouse, Melanie definitely considers herself a moving expert. She has lived and worked all over the country, and hopes to bring these rich and varied life experiences to the love stories she gets up in the wee hours to write. On her off-time, you can find Melanie watching baseball, reading or spending time with her husband and two teenage sons.


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