Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Review Tour: Loving a Warrior by Melanie Hansen (Giveaway)

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 77,300 words approx.

Publisher: Carina Press


BUD/S: six months of the most intense training there is. It’s survival of the toughest, and Matt Knytych is determined to come out the other side a navy SEAL.

Distraction is life or death. And just the sight of former marine Shane Hovland is enough to shake Matt’s concentration.

Shane came to BUD/S training ready to prove himself—again. Semper Fi is forever, but he needs a new start. Not this dangerous heat with a man he barely knows.

Everything they’ve ever wanted is riding on a thin, punishing line. And they’ll have to fight for more than just each other if they want to make it through intact.

After all, the only easy day was yesterday.

4.25 Stars!

This is my second book by Melanie Hansen. The first, Point of Contact, had a lasting emotional impact on me and made me cry my eyes out more than once. While this one didn't have the same impact on me, I enjoyed reading it and found the story intriguing.

Matt is determined to be a Navy Seal like his uncle. He doesn't want any distractions and wants to stay focused on his goal. When he first runs into Shane, he wrongly assumes that he's not in BUD/S. Matt is distracted by Shane and tries his best to avoid him in order to minimize his attraction to him. But this kind of training doesn't really allow for isolation from the rest of the men. Eventually, they realize their attraction is mutual, but their timing is not ideal.

Matt grew on me. Don't get me wrong, I liked him, but he made some poor decisions at the beginning of the training that could have cost him everything. Those actions didn't reflect well on him, but he eventually realized he messed up and made a concerted effort to apologize and do better moving forward. Shane is a good guy. He's determined to make it through training and is a lot more team-oriented than Matt. Even when they weren't getting along, they helped each other out. I liked that both men called each other out for bad behavior. I liked that Matt was direct about what he was feeling and gave Shane time to deal with some of his ghosts before they moved forward. Both helped each other become better men. Both men had painful things in their past and when they opened up to each other and shared those burdens it was wonderful to see.

As both men are undergoing BUD/S training, there is a lot about the training and the psychological effects/tests these men are put through. The training helped this reader understand why Matt tried so hard to avoid getting involved with Shane. In fact, Shane learns that lesson the hard way. The training also reveals a lot about their characters. I liked watching Matt become more team-oriented and encourage the people around him.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

3.5 Stars

I really wanted to love this book, but I’m sad to say I didn’t. Even if I did like it, it just didn’t pull me in and gut me the way Melanie’s last book “Point of Contact” did.

In this book, the author provides us with a lot of descriptive information which for me just ran on a little too long with a little too much going on. We learn all kinds of stuff about what Marines go through and deal with during BUDS/Seal training, which was really interesting and shows that the author really did their research on the subject. I already knew quite a bit on this subject personally so I was pretty impressed by what the author gave us on that front. But, where was the romance?!?! I was really expecting the romance to be mixed into the entire book, especially since the characters bump into each other right away at the start, but nothing really happens until closer to the end after like 70% of the book is already done, I was a little disappointed with that. I wanted to see more of the two men together.

The book was written well and the story was interesting, I just wanted more of their relationship formed throughout the book. Also seeing as this finishes on more of a HFN note than an HEA and we might be getting more in another book, I think this was a good start and “hopefully” the next book will give us more of the men in intimate settings, and not just “training and/or fighting” which seems like the next step.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

4 stars

Loving a Warrior is a standalone book by Melanie Hansen. The main character is Matt Knytych who is a young man who is determined to be a SEAL. Shane Hovland is a former marine who is also going through SEAL training but for the wrong reason. While Matt is a loner, Shane quickly makes friends while Matt seems to alienate teammates. Matt and Shane end up connecting on another level but must remain stealth in their relationship. Neither can afford the distraction.

At the beginning, I wasn't Matt's biggest fan, I found he was somewhat difficult and could be more friendly but the staff was a bit harder on him since he had a legendary uncle hanging over his head but as the book went along we find out some facts that really made me understand why he was how he was and I ended up loving him. Shane was a nice character the whole time and I am so happy the outcome he got.

I found the book was quite long and I enjoy that in a story that I love. I found it was interesting. While I have read plenty of military books, I have never read one that had so many details on hell week and seal training in general. I really wanted the book to continue and see what happened after the last scene. I really hope we see more of this couple in the future.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

November 26 - The Novel Approach, Diverse Reader, Xtreme Delusions, Gay Book Reviews, Archaeolibrarian, BFD Book Blog, Love Sawyer, November 28 - The Blogger Girls, November 29 - Joyfully Jay, November 30 - Two Chicks Obsessed, Mikku-chan, Mainely Stories, December 1 - My Fiction Nook, December 4 - Love Bytes, December 5 - Mirrigold, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Bayou Book Junkie, Amy's MM Romance Reviews, Valerie Ullmer, Jessie G Books, Wicked Faerie's Tales & Reviews, Lillian Francis, Reading In Sarah's Corner, Jim's Reading Room, Making It Happen, Sexy Erotic Xciting, MM Good Book Reviews, December 6 - Gay Book Reviews

Melanie Hansen doesn’t get nearly enough sleep. She loves all things coffee-related, including collecting mugs from every place she’s visited. After spending eighteen years as a military spouse, Melanie definitely considers herself a moving expert. She has lived and worked all over the country, and hopes to bring these rich and varied life experiences to the love stories she gets up in the wee hours to write. On her off-time, you can find Melanie watching baseball, reading or spending time with her husband and two teenage sons.

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