Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Book Three of the Fire Fighters of Station Five Series
Publisher: Signet Eclipse
Date published: December 1, 2009
ISBN: 978-045122865-9
Romantic Suspense
Mass Market Paperback
Reviewed by Gina
Obtained from self-purchase

Try as he might, or not at all, Julian Salvatore generally finds himself on the outside looking in, even among his team at Fire Station Five. They barely tolerate him and he, himself, doesn’t really want to get too close to anyone. Even his childhood friend, Carmelita, doesn’t feel close enough to share her deepest secret, with him. They see each other for talk and sex, but the deeper aspects of a relationship just don’t happen in Julian’s life.

At the station he’s known as a ladies man. When he meets Grace McKenna, Howard, aka Six-Pack’s sister-in-law, he’s just about ready to consider being a one woman man. The problem is, Grace couldn’t care less about him and Six-Pack has warned him off. Still, he can’t resist the luscious blonde attorney. When he sees her with a childhood nemesis, he warns her away from the man. But Derek is Grace’s client, her criminal law type client, and she’s not about to throw away a rather lucrative case. Still, her gut tells her there is more to Derek and the charges of sexual harassment leveled against him than the man is willing to admit.

When a young man goes missing before Julian’s eyes his own dark past will collide with what should have been a bright future.

I’ve been enjoying Jo Davis’ Fire Fighters of Station Five series. She has a sensually hot style of writing that makes for a good story. In HIDDEN FIRE I saw the same flattening I’ve begun to see in book 3 of most series. Again, I don’t know if it’s because the authors are under a too close deadline or if they themselves have lost a tough of the passion for the story or something else. I liked Julian, a lot, and even more so when his childhood secret surfaces. Suddenly you know why he’s hiding behind that ladies man persona.

I never warmed up to Grace. It wasn’t that we are told way too many times she has pretty eyes. There’s just something about her that’s flat. She’s not someone I’d like to know in real life. There was very little depth to her, and yes, she should have been disbarred for what she does at the end of the story.

What bothered me was how Ms. Davis’ handled Carmelita. She, and possibly Shane Ford, would have made not only their own fabulous story, but led the way into another super series. I have an issue with gratuitous deaths of secondary characters that are seemingly, there for no other reason than to force emotion and drama.

I’ve wondered how Ms. Davis will deal with Sean’s issues when the time comes for his story. After seeing how deftly and with total compassion she handled Julian’s. I am more than before, looking forward to Sean, and Tommy’s story.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of the book.

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