Always Watching

Always WatchingAlways Watching by Lynette Eason
Series: Elite Guardians
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Published by Revell on February 2, 2015
Pages: 329
Also in this series: Without Warning
Also by this author: No One to Trust, No Place to Hide, Sins of the Past, Without Warning

 

About Always Watching (from the back cover):
The bodyguards of Elite Guardians Agency have more than just skill and prowess in common–they’re also all women. When it becomes clear that popular psychiatrist and radio personality Wade Savage has a stalker, his father secretly hires Elite Guardians in order to protect his son.

But when Wade’s bodyguard is attacked and nearly killed, agency owner Olivia Edwards must step in and fill the gap. Olivia’s skills are about to be tested to the limit as Wade’s stalker moves from leaving innocent gifts at his door to threatening those closest to him. Olivia has the feeling that she’s next on the list. And to complicate things even further, she realizes that her heart may be in as much danger as her client.

 

From the beginning, we are drawn in to the Agency, and the women that encompass it.  Some would say that Eason goes out on a limb with an all-star cast of female bodyguards.  There is always the gender equality argument, and what women are capable of accomplishing.  And yes, some men would probably have an issue with a female protecting them.  But honestly?  None of those thoughts even entered my mind as I was reading the book.

Vivid imagery is used when Wade’s estate is explained; details of the grounds and surrounding area easily come to mind as the specifics are given.

Eason does an excellent job of telling the story; drawing the reader in and allowing them to make a connection with each character.  The characters are introduced and portrayed in a way that makes the reader seem like they know them, and could actually be people they’ve met in their everyday lives.  Background information is carefully released over time, creating the necessary depth needed to tell the story.

Not one to shy away from suspense, Eason does an excellent job of mixing the correct proportions of suspense, romance, intrigue, and just plain old excitement.

Much research must have gone in to the details of the story because the scenarios are told in a way that implies great knowledge and understanding of the many different occupations that are portrayed throughout the novel.  Vivid imagery is used when Wade’s estate is explained; details of the grounds and surrounding area easily come to mind as the specifics are given.

An excellent “whodunit”, you’ll be left trying to figure out who the culprit is that is causing the turmoil in everyone’s lives!

Speaking of details…the details fly off the page resulting in a fast paced, page turning novel!  Not one to shy away from suspense, Eason does an excellent job of mixing the correct proportions of suspense, romance, intrigue, and just plain old excitement.  As each new plot unfolds, the reader is eagerly peaking around the corner to see what is coming up next.  An excellent “whodunit”, you’ll be left trying to figure out who the culprit is that is causing the turmoil in everyone’s lives!

–Shondra


Olivia and her partners have established an all-female, elite protection agency.  Tasked with protecting both public and private citizens their reputation has preceded them.  The Elite Guardian Agency is hired by the father of Wade Savage, a well-known psychiatrist who hosts a late night radio talk show.  But lately, he has been getting strange gifts.  And what’s worse, threats against him and his twelve-year-old daughter Amy.

But when something goes terribly wrong with Wade’s first bodyguard, Olivia has to take charge.  Olivia must call on all her resources in the local police department and call in extra staff to keep Wade and his family safe.  With each passing day the stalker ups the stakes.  And with each passing day Olivia and Wade find themselves drawn together both professionally and personally.  In the end, Olivia must face her greatest fears with the potential for the greatest reward.

Christian crime/suspense novels have always been a little bit of a tough sell with me.  I have found many that simply aren’t believable as authors try to skirt the ugliness that is crime and evil.  So I was pleasantly surprised with this first book in the Elite Guardians series.  Not only were the characters incredibly believable and clearly well researched, the circumstances of the crimes and how they were described was realistic and kept me very interested.

I was pleasantly surprised with this first book in the Elite Guardians series.

For the faint of heart, this book might not be for you.  The first of Wade’s bodyguards has her throat slit and is stuffed in a car trunk.  While the description of the crime isn’t graphic, if you shy away from the reality of violence, you may want to either skip the first few chapters (not recommended due to story development) or find a less intense series.  Lynette Eason does a masterful job of building suspense.  Her descriptions of the bombing of the radio station had me sitting on the edge of my seat and despite the late hour of the night I was reading, I just couldn’t stop.

Lynette Eason does a masterful job of building suspense.

Being that this is the first book in this series, I was naturally inquisitive as to how the author would deal with creating a backstory for the main characters, specifically Olivia.  I was impressed by how she wove the creation of the backstory in to interactions between Wade and Olivia.  It seemed to flow so naturally as bits of Olivia’s past that influenced her career decisions and life trajectory were discussed as conversations between the two.  The conversations were reminiscent of every early relationship conversation I have ever experienced and therefore fit seamlessly into the book.

The language of the book is very modern and conversational.  It made for smooth and easy reading

There were a couple of spots (literally, like two) where the verbiage of phrases used were a little awkward.  But overall, the language of the book is very modern and conversational.  It made for smooth and easy reading which made those few spots stick out.  I loved the interweaving of text messages as they are happening, because let’s face it, we all do it.  It was just enough to make the tech real-time, but not overly done.  This book is a fantastic kick off to the Elite Guardians series and I am eagerly anticipating book two due out later this year.

–Beckie

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