The Officer Breaks the Rules
I know that over the last decade or so military stories have been overdone. However, I still have a soft spot for heroines and heroes in uniform. With both leading characters in the service, I expected a pleasurable read but sadly this book felt short.
After meeting Jeremy Phillips, her brother Tim’s best friend, Madison is smitten. They are both stationed on the same base and she is not looking for love, so she doesn’t understand why Jeremy won’t act on his attraction to her. He tried to explain that friends don’t hit on other friends’ sisters. And that Tim wouldn’t be pleased. But Madison is her own person and she is not going to let what Tim might think influence her decisions.
In her position as a nurse working in the base’s E.D. department she treats Jeremy’s road rash after he has an accident on his motorcycle. A couple of days later she decides to give him one more chance to see the light, and makes a house call to check on his wounds. Jeremy resists the first couple of kisses, but finally with the third he gives in to temptation. The first salvo is shot, and flush with success, but Madison knows that she needs to back off a little. She has a few more campaign tricks to batter at his resistance.
Jeremy is at a crossroads in his life. He is conflicted about his next career move. Being in the military doesn’t excite him anymore. He is eager and enthusiastic about his writing, but not so much about staying in the service. Most of his free time is spent on his novel. However, this is not something his career military father would understand. He doesn’t want to disappoint his father and yes, he sees the benefits of serving ten more years, but can he make his father understand that ultimately it is his decision?
This is the second book in the series, and even though I know there was probably a build-up to this story in the first book, and maybe more background on Madison and Jeremy’s relationship, I do feel like this book can stand on its own.
The author turned the male/female roles around and in the beginning of the book Madison is doing the chasing. Jeremy is attracted to Madison, but has been upfront with her on why he doesn’t want to act on the attractions, but she thinks his reasons are stupid.
I am not sure which bothered me the most – Madison acting like she knew what was best for Jeremy just like Jeremy’s father, or the fact that Jeremy is so wishy-washy that he is swayed by other people’s desires. Both scenarios contributed to Jeremy’s emasculation.
Maybe my love of Alpha heroes, especially military heroes, and my acceptance of the philosophy “He’s Just Not That Into You” affected my perception of Madison’s wooing. Whatever the reason, it didn’t work for me. Maybe if there had been more humor it would have.
The start of a secondary romance between Veronica, the cousin of Tim’s wife, and Captain Dwayne Robertson begins in this book and then will spin off to the third book, The Officer and The Secret. Veronica parents are missionaries and she has lived in desolate overseas locations most of her life, leaving her unworldly and ingenuous. I didn’t understand why her background is such a big secret, unless her parents are passing out Jonestown’s Kool-Aid? So this relationship also left me lukewarm.
Even with the polished writing, this book is not one I can recommend.