Author: Hallee Bridgeman
Series: Love & Honor #2
Release Date: October 4, 2022
You can't outrun the past
FBI Special Agent Lynda Culter is investigating an ecoterrorist organization in the Alaskan wilderness when she and her partner are taken captive and he's murdered before her very eyes. The only person who can identify the key players, Lynda gets assigned to take part in a joint operation in Istanbul to take the organization down.
As a woman in a Muslim country, she'll find it much easier to move around undetected with a fake husband. Unfortunately for her, the one assigned to play the role is none other than Army weapons specialist Bill Sanders--the man who crushed her heart in college.
With a cargo bay's worth of hurt and baggage between them, these two consummate professionals must play their parts perfectly if they hope to stop those responsible for bombing oil pipelines, which has killed innocent civilians and threatened to destabilize the oil markets. Protecting Lynda becomes Bill's primary focus--but love long buried has a way of resurfacing at the most inopportune times.
Reviewer: Elisha Varela
I love that this was a second-chance romance. I'm a sucker for these.
I liked the southern touch. It made it funny, but it was also kind of hard at times to understand him.
I like that Lynda Coulter was very smart. She was very good at problem-solving and would figure out the bad stuff that was going to happen.
I liked how Bill Sanders could read people. He was also very smart and a good field operative. Bill overcame so much. He carried so much of his past into his present that it ruined his relationship. We see that the past shouldn't affect our future. Such a good ending!!
I didn't like Bill's perspective on things. He was very bipolar about their relationship. It was a rollercoaster. And just when you think they'd end up together, something happens to separate them. It just went back and forth.
I liked the characters! I loved that any decision they faced, big or small, they would always consult God first and foremost. Again, I loved how they involved God a lot, from their bedtime prayers, before meals, and their Bible reading. It was nice to find that in a book.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell through Interviews & Reviews. I was not required to give a favorable review. This is my own opinion.
Reviewer: Joy Hannabass
They may have dated in college, but Lynda was absolutely sure she didn't want to work with him now. Or even look at him as far as she was concerned.
Wow! This is an amazing story. While working on an investigation of an ecoterrorist organization, FBI Special Agent Lynda Culter and her partner are taken captive, and her partner is killed right in front of her. Lynda ends up in Turkey since she is the only one who can identify some of the head men. She was NOT expecting to see her old college flame when she showed up to work the case. Will they catch the bad guys before anything else is blown up? And how is Lynda supposed to work knowing Bill is there looking over her shoulder?
I always enjoy military fiction, and I really love Word of Honor. Author Hallee Bridgeman does such a wonderful job with everything about this book. It has quite a bit going on, with heartstopping action throughout, plenty of suspense and thrills, a bit of mystery, a healthy taste of love, And a very nice dose of faith woven within the lives of many of the characters.
And speaking of the characters, quite a few are in this story. Sometimes it seems like characters are everywhere, but the story is not crowded. Hallee Bridgeman's writing is phenomenal, and she writes each scene in a way that flows through all of her characters smoothly, and I even knew all of their names! I love that the scenes are so detailed, which shows the amount of time that went into research for this book. The twists and turns are so many it's definitely difficult to figure out where the story is going, which I love!
This is definitely a story that will stay with me for a long while. If you enjoy a good solid suspense/mystery with many thrills throughout, you will love Word of Honor by Hallee Bridgeman.
I received a copy courtesy of Revell through Interviews & Reviews for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Marie Edwards
Word of Honor is fast-paced, intense, dramatic, and terrifyingly realistic. Based on loosely recent events that span from Anchorage, Alaska, to the Middle East and back to Washington, D.C. There are elements of domestic and international terrorism, including a plane crash and pipeline explosions with deaths (including children), that might be disturbing to some readers.
The author also primarily builds on the characters' faith – Bill and Lynda – to give us insight into their motivations and, as a key component of the story, forgiveness, second chances, and sacrifices for the greater good.
Most of the characters from the first book return – Rick, Jorge, Travis, Daniel, Gerald, and a few others. Phil Osbourne, who had lost his leg and is no longer a team member, is not mentioned in this book. The third book will be his story, and I am looking forward to it as this leaves off with some changes to the team at the end of this book.
In addition to the team, a few characters are added in – good guys and bad ones. At times, these people can seem hard to keep track of. And, despite all the characters – readers only get Bill and Lynda's POVs.
While the author did include a glossary for military/NATO acronyms and terms, a character guide would've been beneficial. Thankfully, in taking notes for the review, I was able to keep everyone placed.
This begins with a graphic and gruesome death of an FBI agent. Lynda finds the eco-terrorist group she's investigating is connected to an overseas mosque. This brings her back to Bill Sanders – the man who broke her heart and spirit some 10 years before.
Because of his childhood and background, he didn't feel worthy and didn't want to take her back to his home. In the time since, his religion has become a huge part of his character, and he has also changed from that life.
Given the seriousness of the mission, they have little time to reconcile the past as they head off to Kuwait and Turkey to find the people responsible for a series of pipeline explosions and stop them before more can occur.
With the team's support, it is up to Lynda to identify those she has seen. Though, when one person shows up, it is a complete shock. The team soon learns they're dealing with more than just eco-terrorists, especially as the players change and keep adding up.
Bridgeman balances the seriousness and grave danger with moments of humor, starting with the team's nicknames. This book had far more humor in it than the first one. Which, to me, led to my enjoyment of it.
Bill's little "sayings" were a delight in breaking the tension in more than a few places. One was recalled in a memory he and Lynda had about a hungover classmate – "he looks like 10 miles of bad road." I couldn't stop laughing. It was written so realistically I could almost see it.
I dove into this book, best described as a "cannot put it down" kind of read. The engaging dialogue and vivid descriptions made me feel like I was part of the action.
Bridgeman did a masterful job of keeping readers guessing and throwing in surprises. I read one at 1 am and had to stay up a few hours to resolve it. I literally wanted to yell, "Are you kidding me?" It was something that I could not have even anticipated. There was NO clue or build-up for it.
Those who have read the first book should definitely read this one to get the continuing story, as it features a follow-up about Rick and Cynthia. While classified as Romantic Suspense, there was more suspense than romance. However, the story itself is concluded without a cliffhanger.
Thank you to Revell (a division of Baker Books) for providing a complimentary review copy through Interviews & Reviews. A positive review was not required nor requested. All words are my own.
Reviewer: Charity Henico
Wow. I think I liked this book better than the first one. After I got to the end of chapter one, I realized I had forgotten to take any notes! It immediately sucked me in.
There isn't a lot of action, per se, in this book. Lots of strategizing and behind-the-scenes stuff, but it totally worked. I was engrossed from the beginning and didn't want to put it down.
There were a couple plot twists, which threw me for a loop, and toward the end of the book, I had tears in my eyes once I saw where the future was headed. There's only one book left in this series, and it'll be hard to let this team go.
I was provided a review copy by Revell through Interviews & Reviews for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Rebecca Maney
"What was Lynda Culter doing in Kuwait? More importantly, what was Lynda Culter doing in Kuwait wearing a hijab while consulting with his Special Forces A-Team commander?"
Well . . . it was like this. "My partner and I were serving a warrant (in Alaska). Until that moment, we thought they were the peaceful types. We had no idea what they had planned." It seemed that F. B.I. Special Agent Lynda Culter was the only eyewitness to the brutal murder of a fellow agent by international terrorists posing as environmentalists. Or working with them . . . thus the trip to Kuwait, and to the mosque where all of the email messages prompting a series of global pipeline explosions had originated.
Army weapons specialist Bill Haynes had done a double-take. His first love, in all honesty, his only love . . . after ten years of silence, if Lynda didn't hate him then, she was going to hate him now. Their mission? " . . . to live in a hotel room and pretend to be civil and married in a way that would fool anyone who decided to take a closer look".
Richly layered. An apt description of a book that travels around the world with its readers. Operating with military precision when necessary while tenderly exploring the most delicate matters of the heart and soul. This is most certainly an inspirational story in the best way. Warriors seeking to be that "good and faithful servant," striving to hear "well done" from the One who matters most. And romantic? Well . . . perhaps you would like to decide for yourself.
"His soul longed to be with her. No matter what he told himself or all the different ways he tried to convince himself otherwise, he believed God meant for her to be the better part of him. She always had been."
I received a copy of this book from Revell through Interviews & Reviews. The opinions stated above are entirely my own.
Reviewer: Laura J. Davis
It's not often you can read new releases so close together. So I was excited to discover what would happen next in Hallee Bridgeman's continuing Love & Honor series.
As before, Bridgeman grabs hold of the reader from the get-go and doesn't leave much time for air. While we meet all the same characters from the first book, this time, the spotlight is on Bill (Drumstick) Sanders, and we learn more about his backstory. Bill's hard stance on not being distracted by a woman is tested when he has to work with his former college sweetheart, FBI Agent Lynda Culter.
I was amazed at how the author's mind worked. She is a master at describing technical, strategic and planning details for missions that feel incredibly real and plausible. And she does all this while weaving a romance and faith element into the storyline.
If you haven't read the first book, you shouldn't be too lost with this one. But, do yourself a favour and read it anyway. I highly recommend this series!
I received a review copy courtesy of Revell through NetGalley for my honest opinion.
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