The Spy Who Wants Me
The Spy Who Wants Me is the third release in The Goddard Project series featuring covert operatives for a secret government agency. I didn’t read book two, but I remember the first book, Satisfaction Guaranteed, being a much more enjoyable read than this latest installment.
Elle Gray is a covert agent for black ops group The Goddard Project (TGP), a government agency which keeps track of new technology being privately developed in the U.S. Her cover job is as a top-notch security consultant. She is sent in undercover to Environmental Technology Research and Design (ETRD), a private research company working on building an anti-gravity device. Her cover job is to beef up the security at ETRD after a security breach; her secret TGP assignment is to obtain as much information as possible on the anti-gravity project.
Dr. Beau Ruston is second-in-command for ETRD, and the project manager for the antigravity project. Both he and his supervisor Frank know prior to Elle’s arrival that she is a covert agent for TGP, having been informed of this fact by the mysterious owner of ETRD, Mr. Smith. Beau is angry that Elle is going to be allowed to spy on him and ETRD, and he doesn’t like being lied to, but he’s going to be Elle’s official ETRD liaison.
After Elle begins work at ETRD, it becomes clear that this isn’t just a security breach that’s over and done with — someone is actively trying to get their hands on the plans for the anti-gravity device, not knowing that the device doesn’t work and will cause fatalities if implemented. Beau and Elle must work together to track down the bad guys and figure out who’s working on the inside at ETRD, in between bouts of hot sex and relationship discussions.
Overall, my feelings for The Spy Who Wants Me are blah. The attraction and flirting between Beau and Elle felt forced for a good portion of the story, so I wasn’t feeling any real chemistry between them. Plus, near the end Beau developed the annoying habit of making immature sexual comments while the group was together trying to solve the case.
While the characters were all fairly likable, they felt underdeveloped. By the end of the book I still didn’t feel that I’d really gotten to know any of them. Beau and Elle were more like caricatures of common romance protagonists: the brilliant kick-ass heroine who looks like a supermodel but is vulnerable at her core; the hunky college-football-star-turned-brilliant-scientist who’s been burned before and doesn’t want to take another chance on love. They didn’t feel like real people to me, which probably explains why I was never really engaged in the story.
The suspense plot was mild and not very suspenseful at all. Even the characters themselves didn’t seem overly concerned with what was going down. Sure Elle was working on solving the mystery, but it didn’t feel like her top priority. The suspense wasn’t integrated well with Elle and Beau’s story, with the focus of their scenes either being sex/romance or solving the mystery, but not both. These two elements were integrated much better in the secondary romance between Elle’s scientist brother and his co-worker.
In the end, I just can’t recommend The Spy Who Wants Me. While I didn’t dislike it per se, if I hadn’t been reading it for review I likely would have lost interest and never finished it.