Code Name: Nanny
Code Name: Nanny was slow to start and features an uninteresting couple; but at least it picked up quickly, and for a while was exciting and sexy. But the author didn’t quit while she was ahead, and added chapters to drag out the book after what seemed a logical end. In a reverse of the sagging middle, this is a book where the middle made for the only good reading.
Cara O’Connor is an assistant district attorney in San Francisco. Cara is the widowed mother of two girls, and is engaged to Senator Tate Winslow, who has loved her for years. Everything should be perfect, but because of her work Cara has been receiving threats; things have escalated to the point that she needs protection. She has FBI agent Summer Mulcahey pose as the family nanny. At the same time Summer is there, one of Tate’s friends has arranged for Gabe Morgan, Navy SEAL, to pose as the family gardener.
Gabe’s shower is broken so he goes over to the nanny’s room to take one and Summer walks right in on him. She’s impressed, but acts rude and prickly. Cara and Tate are having problems too. When she was in college, she got pregnant and went to a clinic in Mexico for an abortion. Cara is prosecuting a case against a man connected to the clinic, and if news of her visit to an abortion clinic came out, it would ruin Tate’s political career. He doesn’t care, but Cara is about to call the engagement off.
When violence breaks out, Cara and Tate and the girls take off for his ranch in Wyoming where they can hash out their relationship, and Gabe and Summer go after the bad guys.
There should be enough excitement in Code Name: Nanny to satisfy, but too many plot problems marred this read. We are told, for instance, that Summer is in disgrace with the FBI for a botched operation that left her scarred and her partner dead. It was his fault, but Summer kept quiet all these years so her partner’s widow and children would get his pension. Then at the end, she’s cleared, and I had to wonder – what happened to that pension? We never find out. Gabe has a bum knee that he must bind with an elastic bandage in order to function. In spite of this, he uses and abuses this joint throughout the book. Sounds foolhardy to me. One of the girls, Sophy, constantly wears gloves and won’t talk about it until she finally confesses that if she touches people, she can read their thoughts (and not to put too fine a point on it, Skye used this premise to much better effect in Bride of the Mist). If you guess that Sophy saves the day later on, you win a No-Prize.
Perhaps a more serious problem with the book was that Gabe and Summer were not a very memorable couple. They were totally humorless, and I got no sense of connection between them at all. Their clash with the villains was exciting, but that was about the only thing I truly enjoyed about this book.
But the biggest problem I had was with the ending. It went on and on. When it seemed logical for the book to end, Gabe went slinking off – and there were still several chapters to go! A full four months go by until he returns and a Really Big Secret involving one of the story’s characters is revealed. It was padding to the nth degree.
I enjoy romantic suspense, but this book had too many problems for me to give it a recommendation. I never warmed up to the characters, the book was too padded and, had way too many surprises that came right out of the sky.