Today, I’m hosting USA Today and Amazon Bestselling Author Joanne Jaytanie and her latest release Reaching Hope, book one in the Dog Talk series, a military romantic suspense. Be sure to read my review of this novel. And don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway.
Title: Reaching Hope
Series: Dog Talk Book 1
Author: Joanne Jaytanie
Genre(s): Psychic, Military Romantic Suspense
Blurb: The Baker Corp. has recruited Blair Sellick, a nationally known dog trainer with truly phenomenal skills, to provide exceptional training for service dogs. The project would provide highly intelligent animals as partners for victims of PTSD and other disabilities. Or would it?
The answer has disappeared along with Blair, her fellow dog trainers, and all the dogs.
Ex-SEAL and canine handler Zane Kelly is done with war, with dogs, and with Bolton’s Soldiers. Coerced, cajoled, and eventually intrigued, Zane finally capitulates to Bolton’s Soldiers recruiters for just one project, to find Blair Sellick. The mission is clear, the dog trainers are dying, and nobody has heard from Blair for weeks. Zane has failed only one mission, and that failure cost his canine partner Axel his life.
This time Zane has no intention of leaving anyone behind.
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“Off,” the guard growled between clenched teeth in a hushed, commanding voice.
The guard had Blair pinned under him. Thick, black eyelashes framed his whiskey-colored eyes that glowed as he stared through his black balaclava, mere inches away from Hope.
Was he insane? Why would he think Hope would listen to him? Every taut millimeter of Hope vibrated as she maintained her clamp on his arm. The guard would be lucky if Hope lunged at him and only came away with the balaclava. But then, to Blair’s utter shock, Hope obeyed his command and released his arm.
The guard sprang to his feet, still maintaining his grip on Hope’s leash, and pulled Blair to her feet. Blair’s heart slammed against her ribcage. She wasn’t giving up now. She sucked in air trying to steady her breathing. The instant the guard loosened his grip she would alert Hope and they’d run. The muscles in her legs started to cramp. No! They were doomed. He’d drag them back and Blair would never see the dogs again.
He held her so close that Blair couldn’t help but sense the impenetrable muscles of his chest, even through his parka.
“Run.” The guard shoved her forward.
What kind of game was this guy playing?
“Why? So you can shoot Hope or me in the back?”
“If I were going to hurt the dog, it would have already happened,” he snapped back. “And I’ve never shot anyone in the back, but if I had, it wouldn’t be a woman.”
Reaching Hope is a great first book to kick off the author’s new Dog Talk series. The title is lovely and well-fitting.
Blair is a dog trainer and she’s good at what she does, especially since her psychic abilities give her an advantage to sense the feelings of the dogs she’s training.
Zane is an ex-SEAL with more baggage than an airport, who, grudgingly, accepts the task of retrieving Blair.
The chemistry between the two main characters is spot on. It’s not a lust-at-first sight either, which I liked. The chemistry comes from the respect they have for one another after being forced to spend plenty of alone time together while caring for Hope, one of the dogs Blair is training.
There is also a shady company, the Baker Corp., up to no good, and this company is well portrayed as pure evil.
The dialogue is truly Blair and Zane. Their POVs are also purely Blair and Zane. The setting is rich in detail and used appropriately to tie into the plot. The author had to pack in a lot of action into this short novel, and she used every word and scene appropriately. There are no lags. No slow pacing. She’s a USA Today Bestselling author and it shows in her writing.
Not only is there plenty of action and romance, but there’s also many tender scenes, and a great character arc for Zane.
Since this is a series, the introduction of the secondary characters is executed perfectly. These men are introduced when they’re needed as part of the plot, something I liked, because I’ve read a few books where the plot goes off course to fit in secondary characters an author wants to introduce for future novels. Well done.
I especially loved the dogs. This is a great new series and I’m looking forward to reading and reviewing the other books.
USA Today and Amazon Bestselling Author Joanne Jaytanie writes mystery/thriller/suspense, romantic suspense, and paranormal. A transplant from upstate New York, Joanne lives with her husband and Doberman in their home located on the Olympic Peninsula with a panoramic view of the Olympic Mountains.
When she’s not writing, she loves to travel and enjoys time with her family and friends. Joanne has recently returned to dog training. Mazie, their newest addition to the family loves to work. The duo is training for Scent Work and plans to start trialing in 2021.
In her previous life, Joanne showed and titled dogs in conformation, obedience, agility, and rally. She has worked in personnel, finance and managed her husband’s forensic engineering firm.
Joanne is a PAN member of Romance Writers of America, Kiss of Death, Greater Seattle Romance Writers Chapter, Rose City Romance Writers, Sisters In Crime, Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal, and Pacific NW Writers Association. She served as President of Peninsula Romance Writers, which was Debbie Macomber’s home chapter.
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