Thursday, May 21, 2015

An Opportunity Seized by Donna Gallagher

Two unforeseen moments in time— One brings them together, the other is a danger so real it could tear them apart.

Antoinette ‘Toni’ Grimaldi prefers to keep out of the spotlight, blend in with the crowd and experience life the same as the bulk of the population. Being a mining magnate’s daughter is a difficult persona for her to uphold. She just doesn’t fit in with high society standards, always managing to say something inappropriate or trip over her own feet at the worst possible moment, resulting in that look of disappointment and embarrassment her parents inevitably wear whenever she’s around.

Meeting a handsome stranger who comes to her rescue and asks her out on a date is so much more than Toni could have ever hoped for on her dream holiday—one she is surprised her parents have even permitted her to take alone. Her fairy-tale moment is short-lived, though, when Toni discovers the stranger has been hired by her family to follow her every move—under the guise of keeping her safe.

Jason finds he is drawn to Antoinette. She is nothing at all like the socialite he was expecting to shadow around London’s nightclubs. After an awkward first meeting, he convinces Toni that there is more to his interest in her than just as her bodyguard. To his surprise, his attraction for the soft-spoken, thoughtful woman grows, despite his usual reluctance to commit to any kind of relationship.

Then a disaster at one of the family-owned mines and a string of death threats force Toni to return home, and her need for a bodyguard becomes a life and death reality.

Publisher's Note: Although this book can be read as a standalone it is best enjoyed in sequence as part of a series.

Add to Goodreads

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
Totally Bound

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I wanted to love this book.. I did.. There was so much promise from the synopsis, but it just didn't work for me. I really think the insta-love had a big part to do with it. Along with the fact that we really didn't get to know the characters (their past, their history... well, not much anyway outside of his job experience and that she's an heiress).

For most of the book I felt like she acted like a teenager who paid attention to no one but herself, but then she didn't have much of a life so it didn't really make much sense. She felt flat and one dimensional most of the time.

While he was a bit easier for me to connect with, I felt like his character didn't fit at time. Like how could a well-trained person completely fall apart like he did at the first hint of any danger? Regardless of emotions being involved, I have a hard time seeing it.

Then there was the whole family thing. She says they treated her one way, then we find out it was completely different with barely an explanation of what happened (basically she grew up). Not to mention the 'threat' that was hanging in the air for the last part of the book that really... didn't feel all that threatening.

I guess, I have to say that it would've all been easier for me to get into if there'd been more showing instead of telling (like 90% of their time together was recaps from one character or another).

Although the one saving grace of the book was that there was an interesting plot line there and the characters did display some growth (although I'll say that to completely change from a few bouts of randiness was, again, hard to believe as she was a full grown woman).

Mary Jo☆☆☆
The Players: Toni Grimaldi and Jason Beck

The Story: Toni Grimaldi is vacationing in London, alone, something she thought her rich and prominent parents would never allow. One afternoon while eating an ice cream cone, the unthinkable happens and one Jason Beck enters her life. He's cute, charming and clearly a knight in shining armor when he offers her his help and company on her way back to her hotel.

Toni is instantly attracted to him, but feels that it will never go anywhere as she's not the tall, slim, svelte socialite her parents want her to be so if they can't accept her, why would any man, especially a man who looks like Jason.

When she finds out that Jason is really working for her father to keep her safe, Toni is embarrassed. Gone is her fantasy that a man would like her for herself, she now truly knows that the only reason Jason even spoke to her is because he's being paid to look out for her and to keep her safe. Jason wants Toni and feels he's undeserving as he is not of her same social class.

As Toni and Jason get to know each other away from their world back in Australia, each admit to themselves that they have feelings that are far deeper than just two people having a vacation fling.

What didn't work for me was the plot point of Toni having an issue with Jason being hired to watch her without her knowledge while on vacation. She's so upset at this -- and she found out less than two hours after first meeting Jason -- yet she agrees to spend time with him during the rest of her vacation. To me, if she was truly upset, she would have created a little distance between them and called her father to blow a gasket.

I also thought the scenes with Hannah (spoiler so I'm not going to go into it here) could have been omitted. By that point, we knew that Toni and Jason loved each other and to me didn't add much to the story.

What worked: The time the author took giving them a story. Yes, there was mind blowing sex from beginning to end, the author showed us Toni and Jason getting to know each other and the deepening feelings they have for the other. Each's insecurities and inner dialogue only furthered my delight in this book.

Part of a Series: Haven Security

Heat Level: Mindblowing!

Also Available in the Haven Security Series

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
Totally Bound

Sydney-born Donna Gallagher decided at an early age that life needed be tackled head on. Leaving home at fifteen, she supported herself through her teen years. In her twenties she married a professional sportsman, her love of sport—especially rugby league—probably overriding her good sense.

The seven-year marriage was an adventure. There were the emotional ups and downs of having a husband with a public profile in a sometimes glamorous but always high-pressure field. There were always interesting characters to meet and observe, and even the opportunity to live for a time in the UK.

Eventually Donna returned home a single woman, but she never lost her passion for watching sport, as well as the people in and around it.

Now happily re-married and with three sons, Donna loves coffee mornings with her female friends, sorting through problems from the personal to the international. But she's on even footing with the keenest man when it comes to watching and talking rugby league.

Donna considers herself something of a black sheep in a family of high achievers. Her brother has a doctorate in mathematics and her sister is a well-known Australian sports journalist.

An avid reader, especially of romance, Donna finally found she couldn't stop the characters residing in her imagination from spilling onto paper. Naturally, rugby league is the backdrop to her spicy tales of hunky heroes and spunky heroines overcoming adversity to eventually find true love.

A multiple ARRA awards finalist in 2013 & 2014 for her League of Love series, Donna is spreading her genre wings in 2015 with the launch of her new romantic suspense Haven Security Series and the re-release of her contemporary erotic novella A Fruitful Intimacy.

Connect with Donna

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of An Opportunity Seized (Haven Security #1) by Donna Gallagher to read and review.

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