Close to the Edge: An Unbroken Heroes Novel

Close to the Edge: An Unbroken Heroes Novel

by Dawn Ryder

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They are part of an elite unit. On task. Off grid. These are the men of the Shadow Ops task force. Be seduced and thrilled by Close to the Edge, the next Unbroken Heroes novel by Dawn Ryder.


Jenna Henson always plays it safe. It’s what has gotten her through all these years . So she never expected to end up in arm-to-arm combat with a gorgeous, muscle bound mercenary named Dare…

Agent Dare Servant lives for the thrill of the chase, the adrenaline high. He’s fully committed to his job, fully armed, and full-on dangerous. But when innocent, irresistible Jenna Henson walks in on his latest mission, the need to keep her safe becomes all-consuming.


Jenna’s captured the attention of Dare’s deadliest enemies, and with a target on her back, she needs Dare’s protection. But being Jenna’s bodyguard might be his hardest challenge yet. How can he keep her safe when he longs to take her in his arms and never let her go?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250132727
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 02/27/2018
Series: Unbroken Heroes Series , #5
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 201,255
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Dawn Ryder is the contemporary romance pen name of a bestselling author of historical romances. Her official naughty inner child. The author of Dangerous to Know, she is commercially published in mass market and trade paper, and digi-first published with trade paper releases. She is hugely committed to her career as an author, as well as to other authors and to her readership. She resides in Southern California

Read an Excerpt


"These two were murdered."

Dare Servant considered the veteran firefighter-paramedic who wasn't backing down. The guy had weathered skin, but his eyes were still bright and sharp. Those wrinkles in his skin said he had a lot of experience under his belt. The couple of scars on his chin told Dare the guy had earned the right to be heard out.

Because Dare knew one thing for certain, always listen to the man who'd been on the job a long time. He'd notice things others wouldn't. When it came to cracking a case open, men like this one were the key to pointing out the tiny cracks Dare needed to apply a crowbar to.

"They aren't the first bodies I've fished out of the Los Angeles River," firefighter Ramos continued. "I called the Feds because no one is taking this seriously."

Dare flashed his badge. The guy nodded with approval. "I knew calling in Feds was the right move, even if my supervisor is pissed over me going outside his jurisdiction."

"Tell me why you think they're murder victims?" Dare Servant asked.

Ramos pulled down the zipper on the body bag to expose the face of a young girl. Dare noted her age, Asian features, and tried like hell not to let the blue tinge to her skin affect him. She was far too young, her hair so dark and full. Her skin unblemished by time and age. Shit. He hated seeing the waste of a life like this one.

She was dead.

The only thing he could do to help her was listen when the rest of the world was ignoring what an experienced man was saying about how she ended up in a body bag decades before her time. Dare was there to stop other girls from joining her.

"Too well groomed," Ramos said. "Look at the brows, manicured hands, feet, waxed legs, and genitals," he was shaking his head. "Someone put her in rags to make it look like just another junkie who loaded up too close to the water. Look at the eyeliner left under her eyes. That's the professional grade stuff or there wouldn't be any left. And then, there's the family."

The guy's tone took on a thick coating of disgust. The kind truly devoted public servants experienced when they were caught between hard evidence and the law that protected every citizen until they were proven guilty. Ramos had a gut feeling and didn't like being told by his superiors to dismiss it. The guy had an eye for detail, something which served him well as a Paramedic. He was the one who rolled up first on a scene and made the call on who was getting transported first. Paramedics burned out fast on the job, Ramos had far outlasted many in his field. It meant he lived for the job and Dare knew he'd be a fool to dismiss what the guy was picking up about the girl.

Dare looked up from the body. "What about the family?"

"The woman who showed up claiming to be next of kin used to own a dozen or more of those massage places that were fronts for prostitution and trafficking." The firefighter looked at the girl and shook his head. "I used to do the fire-code inspections and I know when the girls are living there. They bring them in, these girls, fill their heads with stories of good jobs and then turn them into prostitutes. And then they threaten the girls with exposing their shame to their families." The guy stopped for a moment, pissed off at the harsh side of reality. "The girls won't go back home, won't accept help from anyone because they won't shame their families. That woman isn't this girl's aunt. She was the madam."

"Why is the body still here if the kin tried to claim it?" Greer McRae asked.

Dare nodded agreement at his partner's question as he reached out and pulled the zipper up to cover the girl's face. It was a tiny shred of dignity, but all he could offer her.

"Me," Ramos said with a good amount of satisfaction. "Just watch the footage from the security cameras. They looked around long and hard before coming through the door and trying to claim the body. They didn't see me in the back and I know that woman. She turned and ran the second she saw me. That's why I called you guys. They'll just wait for me to leave and try again. There's no legal way to hold the body on our end. My superiors are telling me to drop it. I'm telling you ... there is more going on here than a suicide."

"Good call," Dare replied. "I'll sign the order to hold the body."

Dare left the building behind, his fellow agent Greer close on his side.

"We're getting closer," Greer said as they climbed into their black SUV. He pulled out some printed photos. "She was with Kirkland the day before her death. I wanted to tell that guy sort of bad."

"He's better off not knowing what sort of case we're working," Dare replied. "Let him enjoy knowing his instincts gained the attention he thought the body deserved."

"He's right, she was murdered." Greer spoke in a grim tone.

It was a heavy topic but one they were both used to facing. It went with the Shadow Ops badges they both carried. They worked with a special class of criminal. Kirkland Grog was proving to be the image of his father who was once known as the Raven. A major underworld crime boss who'd died as violently as he'd lived.

Now, Kirkland was fighting for his share of the Raven's empire. It fell to Dare and his team to catch him before he lined up too many bodies while building his reputation as a man to be obeyed.

Dare was up to the challenge.

In fact, he thrived on it.

* * *

"What have you got?"

Dare was used to the way his section leader cut right to the reason for his calls. There was no greeting when Dare punched the button to accept the incoming call. Kagan gave him just enough time to get the phone to his ear before he spoke.

"Two bodies, one was with Kirkland less than twenty-four hours ago," Dare filled his boss in.

"Good," Kagan replied. "Kirkland is using human trafficking to fund Carl Davis's presidential campaign. I want them both out of business."

"The world will be a brighter place for it," Dare answered. "We're going to wire Kirkland's Cliffside house tonight. Just waiting on the window of opportunity to open. Word is, he likes to arrive at his own parties, leaves for a few hours before so the catering staff can set up. We've disabled the chef's car to keep him away from the party location and allow for our team to get onto the property."

"Keep me posted," Kagan said before the call ended.

Dare dropped his phone back into his shirt pocket. He had eyes on the Malibu estate where Kirkland spent most of the winter months. It overlooked the ocean and pissed him off a little because it was vastly unfair of the universe to allow a man like Kirkland to live in such opulence with money he was earning by selling innocent girls into prostitution.

There were times Dare truly loved his job. Today was one of them because he could smell an opportunity to gather hard evidence coming his way.

"He's on the move."

Agent Thais Sinclair's voice came through his earpiece while Dare Servant watched traffic.

"Looks like Kirkland is clearing out so the party can be set up," Thais continued. "Just the catering delivery guy left, and he's making ready to pull out."

"Copy," Dare responded. "Make sure Agent Bowan has the chef delayed."

Dare killed the call, feeling a surge of satisfaction. Kirkland didn't empty out his house very often. It was the opportunity they needed to bug the place.

One golden hour.

Dare planned to make the most of it.

* * *

Jenna jumped for the phone when it rang.

Pathetic ...

Yeah, whatever, beggars couldn't be choosers.

Or in her case, she couldn't afford to miss a call which just might revive her vacation plans with enough income to make the Hawaiian islands do-able.

Awww Hawaii ... She seriously loved the tropical islands. If that meant she had her price, so be it!

Being a combustion expert was great, except she worked by the project, which meant when one contract finished she was on the bench until another project was secured. Three days at home and she was going stir crazy. She really needed to blow something up but if she wanted to do it legally, she had to wait for a contract. She smiled as she answered the phone.

"Good morning."

"Jennie dear ..."

Jenna recognized the tone. Her friend Sam was in need and looking for reinforcements. It wasn't a contract offer but it was her buddy.

"What's wrong?" she asked.

"It's Paul," Sam began. "He's stuck with a dead car and I have this major account with a huge party tonight and there is no way the food will be ready if I don't get someone there within the hour."

"Don't you have tons of people trying to get hired on with you?" she asked.

Sam let out a snort. "Yes, but this is one of those Malibu cliff homes. Background check is mandatory. Fingerprinting, you know the drill. They use gold-plated toilet paper and don't want anyone around who might steal a square or squeal to the paparazzi about their private parties."

Sam and his husband ran one of the most exclusive catering business in Malibu. Along with the glory went the stress because one bad review could translate into disaster among the celebrities who owned the high-priced real estate.

"So what's it going to take to get you to work for me tonight?" Sam asked bluntly. "You have a background check from the government."

"Ah ..." Jenna muttered, grateful for the fact that she could roll her eyes without her buddy seeing it. "You know, I'm not really a chef."

"Please," Sam cut her off. "You are a chef at heart, you just enjoy blowing stuff up more. You'd work for me if you weren't employed by the space program. Which is why I love you.

"For the record, I don't blow stuff up."

Sam made a scoffing sound. "Fine, combustion expert. Whatever you say. What I call it, is — you have a background check and I really need you to get up to Malibu and put the soup on before my client gets pissed and slams my name to all his buddies." Sam paused to draw in a deep breath. "Besides, moping around your townhouse isn't good for you."

"I'm not moping," Jenna said, defending herself.

"You picked the phone up mighty fast."

Jenna gave into another urge to roll her eyes. "Because I know a contract offer is coming. I work by project. It's just the way the space program is. I'm not unemployed, just on the bench."

"Okay, fine, you're going to be back to crunching numbers in a jiffy. In the meantime ... while you're not moping ... want to come grill tiger shrimp? With that amazing sauce you haven't been able to teach anyone to make, right? Please? I'm a gay man and I'm begging. Do you have any idea how bad this could be for my reputation? Gay men aren't supposed to need women for anything."

Jenna chuckled. "I can't even see you, and I know you're using the puppy-dog eyes."

"Big ... corgi ones," Sam confirmed.

"Ugh ... Okay, send me the address and menu." Jenna caved in. "You're right, I'm picking the phone up too fast. Can't seem too desperate."

There was a squeal of delight from her Sam. "You're the best! The rest of the team will show up later. I just dropped the first load of food but have to go get the fresh sea food so we can meet and exchange the key."

Big corgi ones, huh?

Jenna aimed a rueful look at her phone before she headed toward her bedroom. Waiting on the phone wasn't going to bring in a project offer any faster. She'd get dinner out of it, premium eats, too. Just because she would be cooking it herself didn't really factor in. Sam knew her well, she did love to cook. She just loved making rocket engines better.

But appearing desperate? Well that had to go.

* * *

"Is it done?"

Dare Servant was used to controlling his tone. He kept it low and even as he listened to his fellow agent Zane Bowan.

"That car isn't going anywhere," Zane confirmed. "You've got a clear window."

"Copy that," Dare answered. He killed the call and let out a whistle.

Kirkland Grog was his father's son all the way.

Two innocent girls were laying in cold storage, and that matched his father's blood trail alright. Marc had killed anyone who got in his way or learned too much. Kirkland seemed to think that was a fine way to run his businesses.

One of which was porn.

It wasn't that Dare was straightlaced. He liked a good sex-filled weekend at the end of cases, but knowing Kirkland was bringing in girls from impoverished families and forcing them into pornography turned his stomach.

Dare took a great deal of personal enjoyment in knowing he'd used Kirkland's own security rules against him. The guy insisted on background checks. Today, that was going to translate into a window of time when Dare and his team could get into the house and bug it. Sure, the caterer was likely having a meltdown but the guy would live to put on another party.

The girls on the other hand needed him to have a means of gathering the evidence he needed to get Kirkland convicted in spite of the millions of dollars the guy could afford for lawyers.

Dare enjoyed the drive along the winding road that lead up to the exclusive mansion home. Kirkland was getting money from somewhere. On the surface, Kirkland made a lot of noise about how clean he was. Claiming he made his money as a pop singer. But his father had been an underworld crime boss.

He didn't have any concrete evidence against Kirkland, but it was a fact that his promotion manager gave out more tickets than they sold. Packing the stadiums when Kirkland was on stage, but, from what Dare's team had discovered, all the concerts did was break even.

Kirkland was getting his money somewhere else. And the dead girl had been with him the night before she died.

Dare needed to know what was going on inside the house, and he needed to bug a good portion of Kirkland's personal possessions so he could track the guy.

He pressed his foot against the accelerator and sent his car peeling around the next turn in the road as he gripped the wheel and made the turn in spite of the hairpin curve.

The tires squealed, but the sports car hugged the road with every bit of its promised German engineering.

No, he didn't have the evidence yet but there was a reason he was on the case.

He never quit.

* * *


Jenna jumped back as a wave of gravel came her way from the tires of a sports car. She was pulled well off the road, in a turnout that was big enough for Sam and her cars but that didn't seem to be far enough off the road for some of the locals.

"They all drive like dicks up here," Sam remarked. "Watch the curves, I've found myself facing a car coming at me in my lane more than once because the driver is on a cell phone."

Jenna took the remote Sam was holding out. "You know something? If the universe decides to deliver a mega millions jackpot to me, I'm pretty sure I can make it through life without being a PITA to the rest of the human race."

"I hope you get the chance to prove it." Sam winked at her. "I'm hitting the docks to grab the fresh fish Paul ordered and then I'll be right back, but it's a drive down there. I'll call you when I get up here. That remote thing is the only way inside without setting off the security system. The owner has a bug up his crawl about keeping the house secure. So stay in the kitchen." Sam started to leave but held up a finger. "The guy is also a major dick. Got little bare titty girls all over the place like a buffet. Thinks he's God's gift if you know what I mean."

"Thanks for the warning. Don't worry, I've got plenty to keep me busy."

"Just giving you a heads-up so you don't chop off the guy's hand when he thinks you're part of the party service." Sam shook his head. "Everything is in the back pantry. House is empty."

Sam ducked into the cab of his truck and shut the door. Jenna did the same, buckling her seat belt before looking long and hard at the road and pulling off the turn out. The weather was perfect. The sky was blue and the sun sparkled off the expanse of the Pacific Ocean. It was actually a chore to keep her attention on the road as she made her way up to the house because the view was just so magnificent.

And so completely out of her price range in real estate.

She went past the main driveway, following Sam's instructions to look for a second entrance to the property. The little concrete strip took her around the side of the house to the four-car garage that served as the service entrance.

Four-car ...

She shook her head at the excess, slightly miffed at having to cross her fingers and do a crazy chicken dance as she hoped for a new job offer just so she could afford a vacation someplace with a view this house had every single day.

Yeah, life isn't fair. This isn't your first encounter with that fact.

She smiled at herself and pointed the remote at the garage door. It slid up in response. She left her car in the driveway and walked into the garage. There were two trucks inside it, one for a gardener and another for deliveries.


Excerpted from "Close to the Edge"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Dawn Ryder.
Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Close to the Edge: An Unbroken Heroes Novel 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 28 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the justice with romance
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good character development with an excellent story makes for a delightful read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
New author for me and I wasn't impressed with the characters or writing style. I won't be be reading anymore of the series.
Splashesintobooks1 More than 1 year ago
Rating: 3.5/5 This is a treat for anyone who enjoys romantic suspense involving Shadow Ops and involving betrayal, double crossing, danger, intrigue and, of course, a hot romance. It is the fifth book in the series and it does work as a stand alone but I suspect would be enjoyed even more if other books in the series had been read first as there is an ongoing investigation through the stories. The hero for this story is Agent Dare Servant and he is determined to keep Jenna Henson safe after she inadvertently walks into his perilous mission, placing her is danger from his enemies. Jenna certainly didn’t anticipate suddenly being thrust into situations necessitating secret identities and protective custody but witnessing a murder does just that. Initially Dare is her bodyguard and the chemistry between them is scorching! However, he’s also very career orientated and has no plans to settle down - or that was true before he met Jenna! Now he has to fight his own feelings, not take advantage of the situation and keep her safe. As this fast paced, action packed intrigue unfolds Dare proves to be somewhat inept at relationships and his behaviour towards Jenna means he often has to apologise for what he says and does! I’m pleased to say she doesn’t immediately forgive him and his boss is actually instrumental in bringing them together again. I recommend this to anyone who enjoys romantic suspense - especially if they’ve read and enjoyed the earlier books in the series! I requested and was given a copy of this novel, via NetGalley, with no obligation. This is my honest review of the book after choosing to read it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Brigittehf More than 1 year ago
Unlike with the previous book, it took me a while to get a grasp of this story for it seemed that something was missing from the content at the very beginning. There was no explanation of how the initial scenario came about. Once I started to get an understanding from the snippets, I quite enjoyed the storyline. Dare is the team leader of one of the special ops team. He decided to go in that line of work at a very young age due to some tragic circumstances. There isn't room for anything else in his life. Jenna is drawn into an ongoing investigation by being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and is under the protection of Dare's team after mistaken identity is confirmed. They start off by loving to hate each other until they become aware of the sparks that ignite between them. Jenna is being persued by the villains and when she is abducted, she realises that she is up against some unscrupulous individuals. What she witnesses makes her feel sick and she decides to play her part to stop anyone else from being subjected to that disgraceful fate. Dare reluctantly agrees, but the enemy is cunning for everything backfires and they are back to square one. Dare and Jenna take a plunge with the understanding of having a fling for he cannot offer anything else. Just when their feelings start to surface, they are in the firing line once again. This sends them in separate ways until once again Jenna finds herself in the wrong place. Dare is now convinced that he has been played and is ruthless in his handling of the situation. More to the point, with Jenna. One of the ploys leads to misunderstandings with negative impact. In the meantime, the villains continue with their deceitful plan, no matter the cost. Jenna and Dare become the primary targets. Can they survive these powerful and corrupted public figures? This installment is a little slow to begin with, but once it picks up, it becomes an exciting read. It's action packed and there is violence, love and lust. The chemistry between Dare and Jenna is pretty intense and he has a change of heart. It has a good ending, but part the problem remains unresolved. It will be interesting to see whose story comes next and how far they get with their mission. I was kindly issued with an eARC and the views expressed are my personal opinion.
JenniferSchultheisJS More than 1 year ago
Close to the Edge by Dawn Ryder immediately grabbed my attention with its sexy cover. Talk about eye-catching! The cover isn’t the only thing I loved, though. The story itself is suspenseful, sexy, and worth the read! When Jenna Henson finds herself caught in the middle of a dangerous situation, Agent Dare Servant comes to her aide. Dare will keep her alive, no doubt, but will he be able to keep his hands off her and concentrate on the mission ahead? For someone who is married to his job, he sure has a hard time resisting his attraction to her. Lots of action to keep anyone intrigued!
Monnie777 More than 1 year ago
This was okay nothing special. There were times when the author kept having the characters say stuff like was that vulgar well yeah but it's fine and really it got very annoying because it was said so much and really for no reason. I did like Jenna. I could take or leave Dare. This book continues from the previous ones, you can read this as a stand alone but I recommend reading the others first for background story. *Thank you NetGalley for allowing me to read this for my honest opinion*
gigiluvsbooks2 More than 1 year ago
The Unbroken Heroes are back! Agent Dare Servant is aghast at this fellow Ops members settling down. He knows without doubt that the domestic life will never be for him - the thrill of the chase and the high of danger to strong to ever give up. But when a quirky and charming caterer ends up smack dab in the middle of a criminal mastermind's plot, Dare will uphold his honor and protect her. Even though she pushes all his buttons. Even though her beauty drives him to distraction. Even though he's in danger of losing his heart to her and hanging up his Shadow Ops life for good…. Review: I will start off by saying this is book number 5in the series, but it can totally be read as a stand alone with little difficulty. I read these books out of order and started with book number 4 in the series. I want to go back and read the first three books, but I still have not had the chance. The one thing that was the biggest issue for me was that the ARC started out in chapter 2 and not having chapter 1 really got me a little lost and missed the whole Jenna witnessing the crime that set her into protective custody. In this book the main couple is Dare and Jenna. As a couple they are thrown together when Dare is the one who is in charge of her protection. Dare tries to fight his attraction because of his history and job, but it is no use. I really liked Jenna, she is fearless, whether going up against the killers or their attraction and stubborn Dare. This book is very suspenseful and action packed. It is also very sensual and sexy, Dare and Jenna have great chemistry. I loved that both of them fight together and are both strong characters. It is told from multiple points of view. 4Stars *I voluntarily read an advance reader copy of this book provided by the publisher.*
Boohimdanno More than 1 year ago
I started this book right away feeling very lost as if I started the book in the middle of a chapter. I stopped picked up the first 4 books and quickly reviewed them thinking I missed something from the last book. No I didn't miss anything. This is the first book in the Unbroken Heroess series you will need to start with the previous books to even come close to understand what is going on. After being lost the story quickly recover with sexual tension that is steamy but is taken care of pretty fast. The story fills in the gaps as well as adds to the mystery of the series which started with book one. I would have given it a 5 but the author wrote the story as if you already know who the woman is and why the bugged her house. Dare is from the other books but I didn't remember him until I reviewed the others in the series. This book is a mess of epic proportions from the throw away characters and the story that started in book 1. Nothing flows and many times the sex takes over the story leaving readers wondering what they are reading. Romance? Suspense? Or Erotic? The characters are lost in a mess keeping this reader from connecting to the story. I enjoyed most books in this series but this one left me wondering what I missed? Thank you to Netgelley and St. Martin's Paperbacks for the advance copy
Yearwood More than 1 year ago
What the heck did I just read? That is what I was wondering after reading Close To The Edge by Dawn Ryder, published under the St. Martin’s Paperbacks. This title is book #5 in Dawn Ryder’s Unbroken Heroes series. If I knew how to add a facepalm to this review I would. I am going to give you a fair warning now. Don’t be confused like I was when I cracked open the book and Chapter One was missing. That is correct, chapter #1 and the introduction of what transpired before you read chapter two was gone. Without reading the first chapter it was like hearing a punchline to a bad joke. Close To The Edge had no character chemistry, meaning little to no romance. I was expecting what I read in the synopsis. Maybe if I read the synopsis twenty million times and wished upon a star, I would have gotten a better book than what I got. What happened to the storyline. This story was written like it was a screenplay. You know chapter two take five. For instance, where one scene takes place then it was cut to another scene. An entire book made up of cutscenes does not make a book. It went on and on like that. Before you knew it, I was at the end of the book. Or so I thought! until I seen Chapter One on top of what suppose to be the last page of this book. I was so done with this book that I most certainly didn’t care by that point of what transpired to lead up to Jenna Henson being in Dare Servant so-called protective custody and why the elite to of men and women wanted to take down a Mafia Kingpin. Will I recommend this book? I most certainly will not. Without purchasing this book, I don’t know if the issue with the chapter in the wrong place was ever corrected. I only hope that it was.
nelriv More than 1 year ago
Rcvd an ARC at no cost to author. (netgalley) Well maybe it is my fault for starting the series with this book come to find out this the fifth. I love mystery, suspense action books, but this one just didn't do it for me I felt it all over the place and couldn't really get into it. Sorry folks just didn't win me over.
micharch More than 1 year ago
I want to start out by stating that I was given an ARC by NetGalley for my honest review. I will also state that I did not read the other books in this series and I think that hindered my ability follow along with those book for the most part. I felt like I was dropped in the middle of the plot without any knowledge of what was going on. Dare and Jenna were confusing to me and I didn't understand their dynamic at all. He seemed to push her away and she seemed to wilt all too quickly. Their back and forth didn't make much sense and, frankly, I didn't really care for either of them. I got lost multiple times in this book. There was no clear indication of who was speaking from one moment to the next. The book skipped along so abruptly that I felt for sure that I was missing sentences or something. It did not flow well at all for me. The synopsis for the story was strong but the execution was weak. I think if you read the other books in this series that this book might have been enjoyed much more by you than me. I can honestly say that I was disappointed at how confused I was throughout most of this book.
BooksAndSpoons More than 1 year ago
First, thank you for my fellow reviewer who reached out and gave me a heads up about the possible formatting issue with the eARC that could have affected into my enjoyment of this exciting, interesting, romantic suspense novel, a series where I jumped right in the middle of yet relished it. The teams of Shadow Ops play without rules. They are the good guys who sometimes have to do bad things for the greater good of the mankind. The tension even within the team is a powerful force. It is obvious that the members of this elite team don't trust anyone completely, that they never let their guard down, that they always are prepared to the worst outcome, relationships are not an option and feelings are for the others. Jenna was an innocent bystander who' life ended up being collateral damage in the war against human trafficking, greed, and power. She has spunk, she is brave, she can handle herself in any situation. It was easy to admire her and her tough spirit, loyalty, and honesty. Agent Dare Servant, I liked him, I really did. I even understand why he was being such a jerk to Jenna, yet still, I don't like his actions. He is the best of the best, he is fierce, tough as nails, always on, never lets his guard down. Because of Dare's actions, the connection between Jenna and him is fragile, when the bond is tight. So many things are against them, from the circumstances to the people wanting them dead, so the odds for them to have any kind of future together are low. The storyline was interesting, I was fascinated by the teams and the web of people surrounding them, the political implications of the Shadow Ops position are intriguing. The story is brutal, it is fierce, it has this scary kind of reality in it that makes you wonder if all this could be true if things like this could actually happen, does the world really have that rotten underbelly where human life has so little value to some in power. A captivating and fascinating story, that really awoke my interest to the rest of the series ~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
KaliMcQuillen More than 1 year ago
*3* I'll be honest, I usually love books like these but this one felt really choppy to me unfortunately. Would I read another by this author? Yes, yes I would. I was interested, I wanted to see what was going to happen next and I liked that Jenna even though she was scared and way over her head she did what had to be done. She wanted to help, she didn't just want to sit back and do nothing. Let's talk about Dare Servant the man that had to keep her under wraps. He never got involved with witnesses, until Jenna that is. He was having trouble keeping the lines where they always were, with him 2 steps behind the witness. These two are hot together, they had some sexy times, I liked that he was starting to fall in love. It just needed that little bit of more to get it there for me.
ZR1000 More than 1 year ago
An intriguing, suspenseful, action packed addition to the series… This is the fifth book in the Unbroken Heroes series that can be read as a stand-alone, there are references to events in the prior books. The clandestine mission was planned perfectly and should have run without a hitch or so Shadow Ops agent Dare Servant believed. Kill the premise’s security and cameras then enter and bug the residence of the son of a crime lord, who had taken his father’s place upon his death, while the residence is empty. His team damaged the expected caterer’s vehicle to give them the time they needed before someone would show up but he didn’t plan on them calling in a substitute chef to take their place. So when a beautiful woman walks in on him there is no choice but to take her down so they can complete the mission. For a petite thing she doesn’t go down easily and Dare has to admire that. But who is she really? And can they keep her presence contained? Will she keep quiet as to what she’s seen? Combustion expert Jenna Henson is in between jobs and also is a great cook, she has no real excuse for not helping her caterer friends who need a favor and agrees to take their place until they can arrive at a Malibu cliff residence. She walks into a lavish kitchen to find a ski-masked man who comes after her and she ends up kidnapped until her identity is verified but not before she got a few good punches in. Little did she know that seeing that dangerous man where he wasn’t supposed to be would forever change her life. She’s spunky and if she has to give up the life she’s known she’ll make sure it was worth it. Committed to the shadow life, Dare has finally met his match, a woman who makes his blood burn, a sassy, quirky, fighter in her own right, who is in danger for association with him, one he’ll now protect. He fights the attraction but her presence is a constant provocation. Jenna knows how deadly the sexy devil black eyed man is as he reminds her often but she can’t stop pushing his buttons. If the now is all they’ll possibly have she’ll take it and have the memories unless she can convince him to reach for more. What neither one knows is that the one who is using them both is also helping them find their way to each other, Dare has a most interesting superior. This was an intriguing, suspenseful, action packed addition to the series. Dare was a fascinating man seen before and it was great to see him brought down by an interesting and strong woman. We got to learn of a new type of character, an Unperson, this reader is curious to know more about her in future books. This arc was a bit of a difficult read with the amount of errors and the author’s penchant for not clearly denoting changes of scenes and character voices within chapters. I had to backtrack often. An advanced reading copy was obtained from the publisher via NetGalley.
FaeScot More than 1 year ago
Wow, AWESOME, Best book of the series! I loved it! Dare Servant is never getting entangled in a relationship. There is no option with his past and being a Shadow Ops agent. His job is too dangerous and he can't afford any weakness or distraction. He has to bring those bad guys down. Currently he's working on Kirkland Grog, a "Hip-Hop Star" who is really an underworld crime boss running human trafficking and prostitution channeling some of his profits to support Carl Davis who's about to win the presidential election in a few months. The long running thread in this series that Carl will close down Shadow Ops when he's President. They know too much about his dirty deeds! Enter Jenna Henson, a rocket explosives specialist who helps out her bestie Sam, and his husband Paul, who run Joyful Occasions Catering. She loves to cook and helps out when he's in a bind. It's a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time when she catches Dare & his team bugging Kirkland's houseparty. She ends up being taken by the team for her protection and to find out what info she may have on Kirkland. The adventure begins. This story had so many twists and turns I loved it. There is a large cast of characters, but no one who is introduced in the beginning as unimportant pops up as a key figure at the end of the book. A real pet peeve of mine and one of the reasons I read digital-love the search function. Characters from previous books come back and play rolls, which I love. Poor Dare is just so impressed with the smart, brave and gutsy Jenna he can't help developing feelings for her. We do get a nice HEA. Dawn even kind set up the next book, which I love as well. Very well done. Thanks to Dawn and her publisher St. Martin's Press for the NetGalley for an honest review.
ArizonaJo More than 1 year ago
Close to the Edge by Dawn Ryder was an action packed romantic suspense that intrigued me but also left me confused. Since I had not read any of the previous books in this series, I felt like I was missing something since I couldn't relate to many of the secondary characters in this story. Nor did I understand why Jenna had been chipped and was in protective custody. Dare and Jenna were both strong characters and Jenna grew by leaps and bounds as this story progressed. Dare set my teeth on edge at first but I did warm up to him as the story unfolded. The sparks flying between Dare and Jenna were palpable; but I confess that I wasn't convinced that Dare could actually give up his life with his Ops team. The story was quickly paced but didn't flow smoothly as there were several threads concerning Kirkland and Davis that were intertwined in this story from the previous books. There was also a mini-cliffhanger at the end which I am sure sets up the next book in this series. I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book from St. Martin's Paperbacks via NetGalley. All of the above opinions are my own.
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
Agent Dare Servant can't fathom the thought of him signing up to do the happily ever afters like his fellow team members, being a family man, and going home to one woman at night just doesn't sound like his kind of thing. But... maybe it's because he just hasn't met the right woman yet, the one who makes him want those things for himself too... maybe he's about too! Dare and his team are determined to catch Kirkland Grog, and pin him for human trafficking, their figuring he is bound to stumble at some point, and when he does they will nab him.When they learn that there is an unassuming caterer that has landed herself in hot water by witnessing something that wasn't meant for her eyes and ears, and it involves Grog, they know they need to protect her, even if she might be involved somehow. The moment Dare meets her he is taken with her, but dang if she doesn't irritate the heck out of him, the woman likes to push his buttons... and get his heart pumping! Close to the Edge is an action packed tale that is certain to be a hit with romantic suspense readers, it has the suspense and action they crave, the steamy romance to curl their toes, and two characters that are sure to steal their hearts! I thoroughly enjoyed this newest offering in the Unbroken Heroes series, it grabbed my attention from the first page, and had me anxiously flying through the pages in search of answers, and a happily ever after... and I am happy to report I found that and a lot more! Highly recommend this one, it's sure to keep you on the edge of your seat the whole way through! I requested an advanced copy from NetGalley, and voluntarily read and reviewed.
CathyGeha More than 1 year ago
Close to the Edge by Dawn Ryder Unbroken Heroes #5 Another unbroken Hero meets the woman that will change his life when Dare Servant, setting up hidden surveillance, runs into Jenna on her way to help her friends out. After she has been debriefed and warned she is released only to find herself picked her up again by Dare. She ends up in hot water a few times, is saved a few times, she has to run for her life and is given a place to hide…for a bit… Her life is very very busy as the dark ops team tries to pin the bad guys down and put them away. Action-packed and at times dark but in the end all is okay for the hero and heroine of this book The romance between Dare and Jenna and some of the action in the story seems a bit farfetched but it did make for an interesting story. I will say that I am more interested in Thais, Kagan, Dunn, Greer and some of the other characters who appeared in this book than I was in this couple’s story. There was a hint at Dare perhaps being a shifter when his mother hid him to keep him safe and and said to him, “Don’t make a sound my little cub…you must grow up…become a bear…before you can right the wrongs of this night…” but there was no other mention of his being shifter except perhaps man-animal odors and his size that was enormous being mentioned. One bad guy is in jail by the end of the story and another is probably being set up for something or other that will transpire in the future. Dare and Jenna eventually find a HEA together and the story is prepared to take off again in book six when it is ready to be published. Knowing this was an ARC I still had trouble getting into the book. I noticed more than one person who left a review mentioned being “lost” and so was I for a bit…quite a bit. Then, when I finished the book I realized the first chapter of the book for some reason was at the end and the ARC began with chapter two. Reading the first chapter first would definitely have helped the book to flow more easily ;) That said, I still managed to read and understand and figure the story out. Did I enjoy the story? Yes Was it totally believable? No Do I want to read the next book in the series? Yes Do I recommend the book? Yes, but do think having read previous books in the series would be helpful. Thank you to NetGalley and ST. Martin’s Press for the ARC – this is my honest review. 3-4 Stars
Buecherwurm161 More than 1 year ago
You must read the series in order. DNF 38% I hate when I don't connect with a book and even more when I don't finish one. First off I was offered the book through NetGalley because I had read a book by Dawn Ryder before, now if I had bothered to check back what I had read I would have never picked this read because the series really needs to be read in order, otherwise you get completely lost with all that is going on. Now the book was an uncorrected copy, which generally is not a problem, but in this case the first chapter was at the back of the book, which I only found out after I saw some reviews and wondered if others had trouble getting into the book, by this point I had reached 19% of the book. So I figured I could at least read it in order to see if I liked it any better, but there were just too many holes in the storyline, jumping around with timelines, unbelievably interactions between the main characters etc that I decided to give up on the book. I am sure if you have read them in order you feel differently about it, but for me to connect with a storyline I need to be able to at least believe that what is going on could happen.
Sandy-thereadingcafe More than 1 year ago
CLOSE TO THE EDGE is the fifth instalment in Dawn Ryder’s contemporary, adult UNBROKEN HEROES romantic suspense series focusing on the men and women who work for an elite Special Ops Team made up of ex-SEALs and other special forces warriors. This is Agent Dare Servant, and combustion expert for the space program, Jenna Henson’s story line. CLOSE TO THE EDGE should not be read as a stand alone; I recommend reading the series in order for back story and cohesion as there is an on-going premise throughout the series. Told from several third person perspectives including Dare and Jenna, CLOSE TO THE EDGE follows the building relationship between Special Agent Dare Servant, and combustion expert Jenna Henson. Trying to help her neighbor’s out of a bind Jenna Henson offers to help cater a party at pop-music sensation Kirkland Grog’s mansion only to find herself detained and in custody by a covert government Special Ops Team. Enter Agent Dare Servant, the man with whom Jenna will fall in love. What ensues is the tempestuous relationship between Dare and Jenna, and the potential fall-out as our leading couple have been targeted by the leaders of a human trafficking ring; and the man vying to be the office of president of the United States. Jenna was only trying to help out her friends Sam and Paul whose ‘Joyful Occasions’ was hired to cater the pop-star’s high end party, only to find herself in witness protection, on the run, with no place to go. Falling in love with her captor aka handler was never her intention but too many mixed signals from Agent Dare Servant found our heroine unable to trust the man with whom she was about to spend a good amount of time. The relationship between Dare and Jenna begins acrimoniously. Dare must take Jenna into custody unaware of what she knows or how she came to be at a suspect’s party. Dare doesn’t do relationships because of the demands of the job but something about Jenna calls to his heart. Jenna knows that to fall in love with Dare means losing her heart to a man who claims he doesn’t’ have time for love. The $ex scenes are intimate, erotic and intense without the use of over the top, sexually graphic language and text. There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including, Scottish Agent Greer McRae; Team leader Kagan; agents Thais Sinclair and Zane Bowan: Colonel Bryan Magnus, Vitus Hale and his wife Damascus Ryland, as well as Damscus’ mother Miranda Delacroix. The requisite evil has many faces with close connections to Washington DC including Kirkland Grog, Mack, and Carl Davis, who has plans to dismantle the Special Ops Team. Once again, similar to the previous story lines, the back and forth between numerous points of view is manic; the whip-lash affect may be too erratic for some readers as the story line relentlessly jumps between characters without so much as a break or introduction. It can be confusing and unsettling from paragraph to paragraph, several times throughout each each chapter, such that the reader may have to re-read the previous passages to follow the jump in perspectives. CLOSE TO THE EDGE is a fast paced, action packed story of suspense and intrigue. The premise is engaging and complex; the characters are colorful, charismatic and dynamic ; the romance is edgy, provocative and intense. If you can get past the constant change in perspectives, I know you will enjoy the latest instalment in the author’s UNBROKEN HEROES.
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
While I've loved this series so far I found myself frustrated while reading this book. It's fast paced and filled with twists and turns and normally I find that a plus in a book but this one had so much going on at times I felt lost. Overall though I did find the book entertaining and enjoyable with all the nail biting action. It does have a nice romance and suspense. While filling in for a friend on a catering job, Jenna Henson finds herself squarely in the middle of a covert operation being overseen by Dare Servant. Dare is bossy, rude, and demanding. Seeing no way out she cooperates with Dare. Now she has to rely on him to keep her safe. Scary to start with but worse if her heart gets involved. I'd recommend this one.
Rainn2978 More than 1 year ago
This is the 5th book in the Unbroken Heroes series, and you definitely need to read the other books before this one or you will be even more lost than this one makes you. This one is about Dare Servant and Jenna Henson. Dare is of course and agent and Jenna somehow gets caught up in their case. He tries to keep her safe while still doing what needs to be done to catch the bad guys. I had a very hard time with this book. I really couldn't connect with not only the characters but the story. I felt lost at times and like I just wasn't getting what was happening. I pushed through and finished it but I'm not sure I would pick up the next in this series as this one was so hard for me. With that being said, I am sure that some people will love it. Unfortunately, that just isn't me.
PennieM More than 1 year ago
This one was full of twists and turns and lots of confusion if you had not read the rest of the series, or at least I'm thinking that may be the problem with me since I am getting in on this one on book 5. This was a fast paced story with Dare, who is a Special-Op mercenary, and Jenna, a combustion specialist. For some reason she has been implanted with a chip and so when she is kidnapped she is able to be tracked and Dare is able to find her and protect her when she is in danger. Twists and turns and chemistry between Dare and Jenna keep this going but I was confused a lot of the time. It was worth the read though. **Received this ARC for review from the publisher via NetGalley**