Title: Controlled Burn
Series: Kilgore Fire #4
Author: Lani Lynn Vale
Genre: Romantic Suspense
July Dupree and Dean ‘PD’ Hargrove fell head over heels in love. When PD comes home to tell July the good news about joining the SWAT team as a tactical medic, everything changes.
July can’t fathom why PD would want to be a cop in this day and age. Wasn’t it enough that he already had a dangerous job with the fire department? Now he has to add another, even more dangerous, job to the equation? With so many cruel people in the world who make a sport out of hurting cops just because of the badge they wear, she has to make him understand. But when he refuses to listen to her reasoning, she feels she has no other choice but to issue an ultimatum: her or the SWAT team.
Dean doesn’t like ultimatums. He’s furious with July for putting him in the awful position of having to choose between a dream and her.
July never believes for a second that he’d choose the SWAT team over her, but she is wrong.
A year later, they’re both still in love with each other, but neither one is willing to budge regardless of their feelings.
July’s feelings for Dean haven’t changed, in fact her love for him has only grown. But seeing him living his life seemingly unaffected by the loss of what they had breaks her heart over and over each time she sees him.
Dean has a good poker face, though. He’s just going through the motions of his life until finally, the smoldering embers of his feelings erupt into a full-on blaze of emotion, burning through everything but his love for July. When the smoke clears, Dean wants to know if they can reignite the fire of their love or is he destined to live his life in a constant state of controlled burn?
The relationship between July and Dean (PD) is not clean cut - like/love/lust. There is plenty of that, but what makes their story so different than any other I have read is that both are working to ruin the relationship. July has deep seeded abandonment issues from her youth and mix in a close call of her brother's death and you'll have a woman that holds on too tight. I won't absolve PD of any guilt because he was bordering on P.O.S status. Neither of them were completely honest with each other. They were too busy playing house, but I didn't get the sense that they were ever friends. They shared things with each other, but there weren't any soul-bearing confessions. As a result, their initial relationship failed.
It was sad to see July go thru such heartache. I personally didn't know who I wanted to apologize and start the initial mend of their relationship. And that is what I did enjoy. They were both wrong. It wasn't a man being a man; though, Dean was clueless about Alexa. And it wasn't a woman overreacting to every bump in the road. There were some serious issues that needed to be worked out. Issues that didn't have anything to do with the real meat of the story.
There is a sex trafficking ring (mainly full of pregnant women) that is being investigated. To go into greater detail would actually ruin the story, but let me tell you things go to Hell in a hand basket when July finds herself in their crosshairs.
Honestly, I can't tell you if I enjoyed this book or not. Let me be more specific - I enjoyed this book because I didn't like it. There were some events in this book that completely blew me away. They were uncharacteristically Lani Lynn Vale. I could see how that could be a good thing or a bad thing.
I’m a married mother of three. My kids are all under 5, so I can assure you that they are a handful. I’ve been with my paramedic husband now for ten years, and we’ve produced three offspring that are nothing like us. I live in the greatest state in the world, Texas.