Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Brief Thoughts: Hot on the Hunt

Hot on the Hunt

by Melissa Cutler
Book 3 (final) of ICE: Black Ops Defenders

~ Goodreads ~

Rating:  4.0 Stars

This ex-ICE agent has one last chance with the one who got away — if he can protect her long enough...

Black-ops agent Alicia Troy spent years plotting the perfect revenge on the man who left her for dead…until her plan is foiled by her ex-teammate—and ex-lover—who taught her the meaning of betrayal.  She can't trust John Witter… so why can't she stop wanting him?

For John, it's a race to get to Alicia's intended victim before she does because he's the only one who can prove John's innocence, but the race turns into a battle of wits against the woman who believes he deceived her.  But when their former agency turns on them both, labeling them "armed and dangerous," John has a new mission: keep his woman alive.

I'll be honest and admit that I was worried this last book wouldn't end the series as fabulously as the other two books had been.  Hot on the Hunt involves a premise that I found a little iffy to follow because of all the backstory about the betrayals and secrets and all that jazz.

And so when I started reading it, I went in with a little bit of trepidation.  Because how was a relationship supposed to blossom from a couple who are furious with each other with so much hurt and betrayal between them?  With Alicia willing to believe that John had planned her execution?  With John furious about the lack of faith his teammates had in him?

With a woman so hellbent on vengeance that she would break federal laws by breaking a convict out of high-max prison just so she could kill him?

All of the events from the beginning were a little frustratingly chaotic in how everything was already out of control from the start.  How was our couple supposed to come back from everything they ended up doing just to survive?  And how was so much hatred supposed to just dissolve between the two of them when they were so willing to believe the worst of each other?

Everything DID come together eventually, and as events began to unfold, I sort of stopped wondering and just enjoyed the ride.  Sure, the beginning was a little frustrating, what with our two main characters jumping to conclusions on the drop of the dime, but it was also framed within a lot of action and movement, so the story propelled itself forward quite nicely.

To be honest, this is probably my least favorite of the three ICE books--although with super secret agent secretary Avery Meadows headlining the second book, it's kind of hard to beat.

All-in-all, the pieces of the story came together and an ending presented itself.  I kept wondering if the ex-crew would show up in this book, in all their glory.  I continued to wonder how John and Alicia were going to get themselves out of their mess, aside from skipping the country as their only viable option.

And while all of my questions were not really answered--the ending of the book felt a little unresolved and open-ended--there was still a patented Happily Ever After™, and some hope on the horizon.

Hot on the Hunt was a pretty explosive ending for the ICE series, with a lot of high stakes, and some feels that sneaked into the equation.

I was properly entertained, although I'm not entirely sure that this series was really all that memorable.


Roll #26: (See also:  Roll #26 Decision)
This book is set on the Virgin Islands; also has the ocean on the cover.

Page Count:  281
Cash Award:  $6.00

Updated Bank Balance:  $159.

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