REVIEW + Giveaway: The Protector by Jodi Ellen Malpas

the-protectorAuthor: Jodi Ellen Malpas
Release Date: September 6, 2016
Rating: 4/5
Source: ARC was provided by the publisher through NetGalley
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People think they have Camille Logan nailed: daddy’s girl; beautiful, spoiled young woman with her father’s bank balance to fund her lifestyle. But Camille is determined to have a life free from his strings. Out on her own, she’s made mistakes, including one that found her clawing her way back after a stint in rehab and plenty of bad press. Now, after fighting so hard to be independent and happy, she finds her life threatened as a result of her father’s ruthless business dealings. Caught between resentment and fear, Camille prepares herself for the measures her father will take to protect her. But nothing could prepare her for the ex-SAS sniper who crashes into her life.

Jake Sharp resides in his own personal hell. He was distracted from duty once before, and the consequences were devastating–both personally and professionally. He vowed never to let that happen again. Accepting the job of bodyguard to Camille Logan isn’t the kind of distraction from his demons he should take. Women and Jake don’t mix well, yet protecting the heiress seems the lesser of two evils. But Jake soon discovers that she isn’t the woman she’s perceived to be. She’s warm, compassionate, her presence settling, and his duty to protect her soon goes deeper than a well-paid job, no matter how hard he fights it. He needs absolution. He comes to need Camille. But he knows he can’t have both.

I have no idea where I got my fascination for bodyguard romances. I read one once but it didn’t work but I was so glad this one did because duh, Jodi Ellen Malpas? Sign me up! And really, pair that ex-SAS sniper to a strong heroine and it’s a match made in heaven. I mean, somebody’s gotta level with all that alpha-ness of the hero, right?

The Protector is simply incredible that it never failed to keep me over the edge because of its suspense elements, the sparkling chemistry of the characters and the never ending guessing game that the author was known for.

Jake Sharp knew all about three things after he was dismissed from duty for being an SAS—work, drink and sex. But his rep sheet was spotless and he’s one of the best in his job. That’s why he was hired to be the bodyguard of a business tycoon’s daughter. Only, after meeting her and he’s seen that she’s so much more than the world knew about her, the wall he’s built for himself, the reputation he’s known for threatens to crumble beneath his own feet. But he doesn’t sleep with his clients. And with his past still haunting him like a nightmare every time he closes his eyes, it’s too risky to lay down his own feelings and to taint the woman he’s falling for with the filth of his past.

Camille Logan strived hard for independence that her own father won’t give her. So she does the next best thing—never to depend on her father for like, everything. The outside world doesn’t know her own demons and it’s easier to fake it on the inside than let it show. But a threat to end her life pull all the stops and now she’s stuck with her own personal, gorgeous and brooding bodyguard whom she wants to murder herself but makes her wish for things to be different. If only.

I really like Jake. Even just from the beginning, the story gave a glimpse of his time in the military. But every time I thought of what he went through for him to be on that position, my heart clenched hard. He has this I’m-professional-I-don’t-want-the-feelings vibe going for him and I couldn’t blame him because his job required just that. He’s hurting on the inside but his work kept him on his toes. But learning about his latest assignment, Camille Logan whom he thought was all brat, proved to be a challenge. Because he’s so wrong. Camille may have that vibe but she’s definitely not that. If anything, she’s responsible, strong and she didn’t let the wealth of her father get on her mind to do things her own way. To make a name for herself and not by kissing some ass. She knew what she wanted and she’d do everything in her ability to get her there. That’s just how hardworking and driven she was.

I liked how the story focused on Jake and his skill to protect. And even when there’s the drug abuse background looming over Cami’s past, there wasn’t that much to it. Clearly, Jake’s character was way more complex that I kept on thinking what he’s been hiding. I was fully engaged in the story that when the plot twist finally came in, it was like it exploded right in my face because ugh plot twist in a plot twist?! Call me mind. fucked. Did I mention Jodi perfected that even with her previous books? Yep. The attraction was so there, I was surprised they didn’t jump on each other the moment they were alone. And the sexy times were absolutely sizzling in all levels. But it wasn’t instant at all. In fact, they skirted around each other for a while, tugging each other’s leashes, testing their patience before they succumbed to their body and heart’s desires. Although it kind of felt like a drag in some parts, the ending unexpectedly made up for it. It was a happy surprise and very heartwarming I didn’t count on it in a book with a premise like this. But still, it was cute and adorable and I might have tears in my eyes reading those chapters.

Overall, not only I loved how the romance was incorporated with the suspense and how just when I thought I have the book figured out, it smacked some sense into me and proved me wrong but also how the characters fought each of their ways to redemption and survival for them to be their best, whole selves for each other. It wasn’t easy but I was so glad it was Jake and Cami together after all in the end.

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