Scorched (Tracers #6)
Blurb:Kelsey Quinn set out to trace a murder victim. Now she may become one.
The dead don’t speak, but Kelsey knows their secrets. As a forensic anthropologist at the Delphi Center crime lab, Kelsey makes it her mission to identify bodies using no more than shards of bone, and her find at a remote Philippines dig hints at a sinister story. When Kelsey’s search for answers puts her at the scene of her ex-fiancé’s murder, only one man can help her. The same man who broke her heart just months before, and who is also a prime suspect.
Faced with an ultimatum— Kelsey or his job—Gage Brewer did the only thing a Navy SEAL could . . . but that doesn't mean he stopped wanting Kelsey. Now Kelsey is running for her life and Gage is her last line of defense. As the threats escalate, Kelsey realizes this conspiracy goes deeper and higher than they could have guessed. With the clock ticking down on a madman’s plot, the slightest misstep will have unthinkable consequences. . .
Scorched is the continuing story of Kelsey Quinn, an anthropologist with the Delphi center, and Gage Brewer, SEAL extraordinaire. Their story began in Unstoppable, where Gage is sent by Kelsey’s Uncle Joe, his CO, to protect her on a dig site in Texas when her team is put in danger after a startling discovery on their archaeology site. Their love story in Unstoppable was great and the ending left us thinking they had their HEA, but we soon learn that all was not as it seems. If you haven't' already you should definitely buy a copy.
Scorched picks up several months after Gage left Kelsey because she gave him an ultimatum: stay with her or remain a SEAL. Gage, being a SEAL to the core, chose the teams over Kelsey. Kelsey has returned to Coronado base after a tragedy has left both her family and Gage’s team reeling and having to deal with a loss that neither of them ever thought they would be faced with. After arguing with Kelsey, Gage is confronted with all the feelings he thought he’d buried about Kelsey, her quick engagement after they broke up, and now the fact that her engagement is over.
When Kelsey returns home after their argument, she stops by her ex-fiancé’s place, FBI agent Blake, to discuss a case she had him looking into for her. While visiting Blake, she witnesses his murder and becomes both a target and a suspect. With killers on her trail to kill her too and the FBI tracking her as a suspect and/or witness to the murder, Kelsey flees to the only place she feels safe hiding: her Uncle Joe’s remote hunting cabin.
After the FBI question Gage about the murder and tell him Kelsey is missing, Gage knows that he can’t leave the woman he still loves on her own. Evading the FBI, he finds Kelsey hiding out at the cabin and pulls her out just in time to prevent her death. I must say there is a very interesting scene involving Disneyland that had me smiling for a while. Reluctantly Gage and Kelsey begin working together to keep themselves alive and also clear up the mess they are in, as well as hopefully finding the evidence of the real killers. They travel across country following what little clues Kelsey has, trying to find out why Blake was murdered and discover a terrorist threat that has slipped under the radar and could cause a huge loss of life if the plan is enacted. There are definitely some tense moments for readers as they team up with Gage’s SEAL buddy, Derek, and FBI agent Elizabeth to prevent the terrorist attack in a very unlikely venue. But happily as with all good SEAL operations, Gage and team are able to stop the attack and get the bad guy.
The passion between Kelsey and Gage is still running hot and, as they are thrown into more and more intense circumstances, Kelsey finds resisting Gage to be more difficult than she ever imagined. Gage decides that he’s not letting Kelsey go a second time and uses every bit of fire power in his arsenal to make sure she never wants to leave again. Gage’s seduction of Kelsey is both sweet and sensual and he works hard to show Kelsey that they can be good together. Kelsey on the other hand is terrified of the heat ignited between her and Gage, knowing that she’s been burned before and that she might not survive another breakup. Thankfully both Gage and Kelsey begin to accept that they are meant to be together despite all odds. In the end, Gage decides that having Kelsey in his life might just be worth losing the camaraderie and support of being a SEAL.
Full of action, hair-raising close calls, and fiery passion, Scorched is definitely true to its name. Leaving readers just a little bit singed, and feeling lucky for the burn. Cannot wait for the next book in the series—hopefully between Derek and Elizabeth!