The Ultimatum (Guardian Series #1)

The Ultimatum (Guardian Series #1)

by Karen Robards


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"Enthralling… Readers won't want this adrenaline-rich story to end. "
—Booklist (starred review)

Thief. Manipulator. Con artist. Call it what you will—Bianca St. Ives is the best in the business.

Growing up, Bianca St. Ives knew she was different from all her friends. Instead of playing hopscotch or combing her dolls' hair, she studied martial arts with sensei masters and dismantled explosives with special-ops retirees. Her father prepped her well to carry on the family business. Now a striking beauty with fierce skills, the prodigy has surpassed the master.

She's known as the Guardian. Running a multinational firm with her father, she makes a living swindling con men out of money they stole—and she's damn good at it. She does things on her own terms. But her latest gig had a little hiccup—if you count two hundred million dollars and top secret government documents going missing as little. Her father also died on the mission. The thing is, the US government doesn't believe he's really dead. They'll stop at nothing to capture Richard St. Ives, a high-value target and someone who has been on most-wanted lists all over the world for over two decades, and they mean to use Bianca as bait. With only a fellow criminal for backup and her life on the line, it's up to Bianca to uncover the terrifying truth behind what really happened…and set it right, before it's too late.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780778330707
Publisher: MIRA Books
Publication date: 06/13/2017
Series: Karen Robards' Guardian Series , #1
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 206,545
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Karen Robards is the New York Times, USA TODAY and Publishers Weekly bestselling author of fifty novels and one novella. She is the winner of six Silver Pen awards and numerous other awards.

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The Ultimatum 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the story.. thrills... Action...Humor.... Romance... Can't wait to read the next book!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I real page turner, Bianca, is my hero. I love that she the way relies on her intelligance, femininity and combat skills to get through the situations she finds herself in.
bookcatcc More than 1 year ago
Well-Written Page-Turner to Nowhere—Watch for a Sequel 3.5 Stars A pricey brand-new cliffhanger With sequels to be read I’ll wait until the price goes down Or read them when I’m dead So many authors now produce Their novels with this glitch But readers can move on To those who never bait and ditch The Story: Read it cold. Skip the publisher’s blurb, it gives too much away. Genre: Thriller (NOT romantic suspense) High Points: Female action hero kicks butt, painstaking detail, fast-paced Low Points: Familiar premise, more detail than story at times, no ending, the action just stops Who It’s For: If you like fast-paced, action-packed tales with loads of suspense, a hint of sex, a dab of sci fi, shadowy government figures and political intrigue, this if for you. And Not For: If you are expecting one of Karen Robards' signature romantic suspense novels where the action slowly builds, characters are 3-dimensional, and a full-fledged romance develops, you will be disappointed. This is thriller-genre, not a thrilling romance. If you hate cliffhangers, this is the definition of one. In some ways Ultimatum is Karen Robards’ best writing: clear, incisive, highly detailed, and meticulously researched. But it’s not her best book—at least not to this longtime fan. This is not the romantic suspense I was hoping for. As advertised, it’s an action thriller, and I’m just not a thriller fan. That said, I was glued to the pages of this book from the start to its abrupt and unsatisfying ending. It’s good. But as I read, I still found myself hoping for the elements I have loved in her writing that clearly no longer interest her. The heroine has a comprehensive backstory a la Marvel Studios rather than a fully developed character. It was like watching an action movie because it was my husband’s turn to choose the film and my turn to watch companionably. Karen Robards is fearless. She seems to switch genres on a dime--no small feat, and one that carries the risk of alienating her fans. She moved from historicals to contemporary romantic suspense. I became a rabid fan when I read Hunter’s Moon and soon gobbled up her other works. I was less happy when she shortened the timespan of her plots in several fast-as-lightning action romance novels that featured a rushed storyline and an unconvincing on-the-run romance. She lost me during her foray into paranormals with the Dr. Charlotte Stone series. So I hope Ultimatum’s serial format allows Ms. Robards to stretch the action out to a credible time period and build up to a more satisfying romance over several volumes. She could win over her romance fans and attract fans of the thriller genre as well. There are few discoveries more rewarding to a bookworm than a great series, and none more frustrating than finding out that you have unwittingly read the first and only book of an incomplete series. So Ultimatum, though a true page-turner, was ultimately disappointing. As the number of pages wound down and the action ramped up, it was clear that there would be a only a hint of romance and no definitive ending to this book. What a letdown: another ding-dang cliffhanger, the old bait and ditch. So this reader will be patiently waiting on a hold list to download the next volume of the Bianca St. Ives saga from the public library.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Usually robards books catch me at beginning this book draged right until the last 30 pages. I hope it becomes a sequel otherwise it was a total waste of my time. I gave it 4 stars because I like the author
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy your books. This was another great read. Hoping for a sequel so u can bring Bianca and Mackey together again. Thanks.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
While the book itself was good, don't start reading unless you're prepared to wait for the sequel as there's no mention ahead of time that this is a two part story. Barely any romance, as most of the book is about Bianca, with very little time with Mickey, and ends on a cliff hanger. All I can hope is that it isn't the author's intent to make us wait long, as this type of book writing isn't her usual style, so was unprepared for this, therefore dissapointed. Hopefully having given us Bianca's backstory, the next book will focus more on Bianca and Mickey. I'd highly recommend waiting to read this 'till sequel comes out. Then its worth the read, as overall the characters are likable and it is well written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really inventive with a multilayered heroine. Hoping this is just the beginning for this character. Wow!
Anonymous 10 months ago
Anonymous 11 months ago
Great story. Is there a sequel or follow up to this story? The ending was good but more is needed. I hope there is more to this story!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Too blase in 1st half of book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The ultimate suspenseful novel. Fast-paced and breathtaking! Outstanding book with a smart, strong Bianca St. Ives. Loved it! Look forward to the next 2 guardian books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Too much detail and description, passive 'thinking', etc, not enough action and doing. Story line didn't grab me the way the author's stories used to. I think it was a great idea, just not fleshed out as well as it could have been. Debating on whether to spend the money on the next one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Start to finish, nothing is shat you think you know ?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read every book written by Karen Robard, and this is the first one I've disliked. Going to try finishing it, but honestly it feels like I'm wasting my time.
OneSmartLady More than 1 year ago
This is not the usual romantic suspense story from this author. I have always bought her books as soon as they are released, whether it is paperback or hardcover, because the characters are great and the plot is totally engrossing (the plot in this book was more science fiction, in my opinion, and a couple of hot kisses does not equate to romance, and yes, that's the extent of the romance). Well, with The Ultimatum, this book strays from what she has written in the past and the ending was a complete letdown - there is no closure, sure that opens up the path for a sequel, but only if you enjoyed the first book enough to even be interested in a sequel. BIG disappointment!
TenaMouse More than 1 year ago
I won this ARC in a GOODREADS giveaway--A thriller with a hint of romance with a twist at the end to set us up for the next in this new series! (side note: I liked this author's unique writing style, however it may annoy some.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Never let's me Down! Have read almost everything she has written and loved them all.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book but upset that it left us hanging and that she and Mickey didn't have more time together. Can't wait for the sequel. Write fast Karen Robard.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was as fun & exciting to read as the Coulter/Ellison "Brit in the FBI" series, full of ingenuity & adrenaline! Please don't make us wait a whole year for the next!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't put it down. Hope for a follow up
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the story humor and strong female character
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thoroughly enjoyed this book!
Deb-Krenzer More than 1 year ago
This was definitely an action packed book and it starts out with a bang and a bust. The bust being the two million dollars that Bianca with her dad and their team was set up and in position to steal. However, that was kind of hard for them to do as the vault was empty when they got there. Having been found out, the chase is on and Bianca's father was killed in the getaway, or was he? No one really seems to know. No one has heard from him in years, including his daughter. Bianca then decides to go legal and opens up a security firm. She handles legit security for several companies. She is still also on the look out for signs that her father is still alive. Unfortunately, there are others who want him punished that are also looking for him. This was one of those books wherein the action just kept coming. It was definitely an entertaining and enjoyable read. Thanks to Harlequin and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of her worst books. Very disappointed.