Thursday, 15 June 2017

*** REVIEW *** TAKE A CHANCE (Book 2 Vegas Heat) by Erika Wilde

    The son of a con-artist, Sean O'Brien learned the hard way that living by your own rules comes with a price. After a brief time behind bars, Sean is now ready to live an honest life, and pay for his past mistakes, and he's fortunate enough that a member of The Reliance Group sees Sean's potential for good and gives him a job at the Onyx Casino. Zoe Russo has met all types of men on the Vegas strip. But when Sean pays a visit to her boutique, she's certain her luck has changed for the better. They share an immediate, irresistible attraction, and for the first time in her life she's found a man she thinks she can trust. But when Zoe stumbles onto the truth about Sean and his reasons for pursuing her, she can't help but question everything they'd shared. Are his feelings for her real, or has she been a fool once again? Until now, nothing has prepared her for the thrill and risk of taking a chance on love.

Take A Chance is the second book in the Vegas Heat series by Erika Wilde.  I am hooked.  I like the first book in this series, but I love this one. Take A Chance is a twofer, so to speak in that we get two romances in one.  The primary story is the second mission of The Reliance Group, focusing on Sean O’Brien and Zoe Russo.  The ancillary story is a second chance (my favorite trope) romance about Zoe’s friend Jessica meeting up with her old flame Noah Young. 

Caleb, the leader of The Reliance Group, tasks Sean with finding Grant Russo, a man Sean blames for betraying his father.  We briefly meet Sean in the first book when he is bartending and at a party.  There is something about this character that grabs my attention even with his brief appearances.  He is fun and has some interesting history.  Now his hot little self has my full attention. 

Sean has a history that he isn’t proud of and he wants to make amends the only way he knows how—putting his con-man skills to work for good.  He is grateful to Caleb for giving him a fresh start.  Caleb has a way of assigning his team to jobs that make them face their past and their fears. 

Zoe Russo is Grant’s daughter. When she initially meets Sean, Zoe feels an attraction but pushes it aside because she has a new business to get running.  Zoe needs to concentrate on her priorities and not get involved with a man.  It isn't the right time for her.  However, she is starting to worry because she can get in touch with her father.  Sean could be the resource she needs. 

There is conflict because Zoe sees her father through rose colored glasses and doesn’t believe the things Sean says about him.  Gradually, however, she questions if she knows Grant at all because there are indications that he isn’t the man Zoe knows and loves, she agrees to help Sean find him. 

I like the way the story develops.  Everything moves at a fast pace with some unexpected twists.  The characters are developed beautifully, and I formed a connection with them quickly.  The added benefit of Jessica and Noah’s love story is woven into the overall plot nicely.  I’m am a full-on sucker for a second chance romance.  Watching this couple work through their issues is well done. 

My only negative comment is that I want to know a little more about how Nathan and Nicole are doing, but in reality, there isn’t too much time passing to add to their story at this point.   The next book is Valerie’s (an interesting character thus far) story which makes me wonder if the series is going to end with me longing to know Caleb’s story.  (I only know of three books planned so far.)

Take a Chance has an intriguing cast of characters that are presented to the reader in a way that will capture your heart.  At times, you will be on the edge of your seat, and at other times you will hope they all come through intact.  I highly recommend this series, however, if you only have time for one book right now, Take A Chance stands nicely on its own.  It is an excellent romantic suspense story that entertains from page one.