I’ve been a fan of Annabeth Albert’s storytelling for a few years now (fifteen books read according to my Goodreads shelves, mostly four and five star ratings) so while I missed the first in her A-list Security series, I was interested in reading the second book, Hard Job, a bodyguard romance with a sibling’s best friend trope. With the past stories being so highly rated, I hoped for something just as good here, but this one didn’t click with me the same way as some of the author’s previous books have, so while it was a good read overall, there isn’t anything memorable for me to rave about.
Duncan Lubov, a former SEAL officer, now runs a security company. His half-brother Danny requests a favour, to cover security for his rock star friend Ezra during his upcoming tour after fans at a previous concert jumped security fences, causing a sensation and the resignation of his security chief. Duncan has known Ezra since he and Danny starred in a kids’ TV show together, but he hasn’t seen him since those early days. Still, having a rock star client would give his security company a boost and the job is only for a few weeks.
Ezra Moon still remembers the first time he laid eyes on Duncan (and learned that he wasn’t entirely straight) fifteen years earlier, and it would be fair to say he’d had a teenaged crush on him then. But now Ezra’s all grown up, and not shy to make his preferences known. Though Duncan appears uptight and strict, a necessity to keep his clients safe, he has a dry sense of humour and when attraction flares between them, it’s not long before they indulge in a secret affair. Duncan knows it’s a bad idea (sleeping with a client is never good for business) but is it possible that their opposites-attract fling can turn into something permanent?
There are several things I liked about this story. There is attention to detail on the life of a rock star, the trials and successes, the business end, and the thrill of performing. There’s also an interesting difference in their family dynamics. Ezra has a supportive family who care about him and keep tabs on him as he travels on tour. Duncan, on the other hand, apart his close relationship with his brother Danny, has a dysfunctional family with a father who is big in the entertainment industry and just as notorious for his power as for his many extra-marital affairs. Duncan is determined to prove he can be successful without his father’s favours and Ezra is fully supportive of him. And of course, the sex scenes are hot and well written.
The main problem I had is that I just didn’t find Ezra and Duncan compelling as a couple. I didn’t feel their attraction (hot sex notwithstanding) and I can’t put my finger on why that was. I just know that I picked up and put down the book a few times before I finished it and didn’t really find anything memorable or compelling to keep me reading. Now this could definitely be a case of ‘it’s me and not you’ and it won’t stop me from picking up more by this author. The happy ending is satisfying and there isn’t anything inherently wrong that would make me drop this to a low grade, as I suspect other readers will enjoy it just fine. It just didn’t wow me like some of Annabeth Albert’s earlier work.
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I'm a biochemist and a married mother of two. Reading has been my hobby since grade school, and I've been a fan of the romance genre since I was a teenager. Sharing my love of good books by writing reviews is a recent passion of mine, but one which is richly rewarding.