Ultimate Courage

Ultimate Courage

by Piper J. Drake

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Retired Navy SEAL Alex Rojas is putting his life back together, one piece at a time. Being a single dad to his young daughter and working at Hope's Crossing Kennels to help rehab a former guard dog, he struggles every day to control his PTSD. But when Elisa Hall shows up, on the run and way too cautious, she unleashes his every protective instinct.

Elisa's past never stays in her rearview mirror for long, and she refuses to put anyone else in danger. But with Alex guarding her so fiercely yet looking at her so tenderly, she's never felt safer . . . or more terrified that the secrets she keeps could put countless people in grave peril. The only way for both to fully escape their demons will take the ultimate act of courage: letting go and learning to trust each other.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781455536054
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 07/26/2016
Series: True Heroes Series , #2
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 144,628
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.20(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Piper J. Drake is a bestselling author of romantic suspense and edgy contemporary romance, a frequent flyer, and day job road warrior. She is often distracted by dogs, cupcakes, and random shenanigans.
Play Find the Piper around the internet for insight into her frequent travels and inspiration for her stories.

You can learn more at:
Facebook.com/ AuthorPiperJDrake
Twitter @PiperJDrake

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Ultimate Courage 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Eagerly waiting next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Every book in this series is really good. I hope there will be many more
DebDiem 7 months ago
Ultimate Courage is a fantastic romantic suspense by Piper J. Drake. Ms. Drake has provided readers with a well-written book loaded with a cast of characters that is stellar. I love the characters in this book! Elisa is on the run trying to keep away from her fiance. Alex is a single dad and a retired Navy SEAL. Alex and Elisa's story is packed with drama, humor, sizzle, action and susupense. I loved every word of this book and can't wait for my next book by Piper J. Drake. Ultimate Courage is book 2 of the True Heroes Series but can easily be read as a standalone. This is a complete book, not a cliff-hanger. OH!! Kudos to Ms. Drake for introducing scrapple to the masses...everything but the oink. I read a print copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
tigerlilly_liz More than 1 year ago
Ultimate Courage is book two in the True Heroes series by Piper J. Drake. We get a little mystery, suspense, and romance. I enjoyed this one more then the first book, Extreme Honor. The characters appealed to me more. We have Alex, his daughter Boom, his dog Souze, and Elisa. I find that kids and pets always add something special to a book I’m reading. Very few times am I disappointed or don’t like having them around. Boom, I enjoyed her sassiness. Souse, I liked how he understood Elisa and also Alex. As for the story it was nice, but the pacing was all over the place, dragging in some areas and moving way to fast in others. As for the romance between Elisa and Alex’s it was sweet; though it does move quickly. I did enjoy how Alex approached Elisa. It suited the situation she was in. Alex well he’s dealing with PTSD and being a single parent. As things progress we get to see his PTSD and how it’s affect him. Souze tied in nicely and helped both Elisa and Alex work out their issues. The book was decent, but things took a turn at the end that was a little upsetting and the issues where so unnecessary. One, someone is out to get his girl, but when a person shows up spouting out stuff that you haven’t seen any evidence of and you believe this person over your girl. No, just wrong and sad! Two, one week you guys are together and you believe the most heinous thing about your girl, but then suddenly everything is all a ok and we are moving in together. Sigh!! All of this is within the last 15% of the book. This will be my last read in the series. I started the series with book 3, but had to put it down; because it tied into the first two and I was miss connections and more, so I deiced to read from the beginning. Well book one was just Eh and two was Ok. So with that I’ve deiced to drop the series and not even attempt to read book three again. Rated: 3 Stars
PollyBennett More than 1 year ago
This is a great series. Each book is better than the last. Love the wounded soldiers, human and K-9.
ahlewis32 More than 1 year ago
Two people running from the demons of their past collide in Piper J. Drake’s ULTIMATE COURAGE. It’s got something for everyone including damsels in distress, a mystery, dogs and Navy SEALS, a great combination. Both our hero and heroine suffer from PTSD issues and have more than their share of problems. Piper J. Drake treats the issue very well, with kindness and compassion as well as a healthy dose of reality. PTSD is not pleasant for anyone and there’s no sugar coating here. The setting of the town of Hope’s Crossing definitely lives up to its name. It’s a gritty real life story and a very enjoyable read. Heat level: 3.5 Rating: 4 stars
BookReaderAnnie More than 1 year ago
I really loved it. I think I even liked it more then the first book in the series. It was just such a good book to read. I loved all the characters. You'll right away fall for Alex and his daughter, okay, maybe not so much Alex as just his daughter. In the first couple of pages Alex comes off like a crazy person. When you figure out why you'll love him even more. I also like Elisa. I'm glad we didn't know her whole story right away. Drake did a great job of unfolding it slow, but yet keeping you engrossed in the story. There is nothing worse then knowing there's a big secret that you learn at the end of the book that turns out to be stupid. Nothing like that here. The story is very fast paced and gives up another look into this business and what it stands for. I also really enjoyed the interaction with the dog in the story. As a dog (all animals) lover I truly believe that they all have their own personalities and are smarter then we give them credit for. The twist in the story is also good. I really didn't see that coming...I know, you what to know what it is, you know what to do...buy the book!
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
I am loving this series! The combination of knowing Alex and his daughter Boom from the first book ( Extreme Honor ) and having read the first chapter of this book at the end of that one guaranteed that I was going to have to read this one ASAP. It didn't disappoint--once I'd started, I was pretty much good for nothing else until I'd finished. The perils of reading well-written romantic suspense... ;) Alex and Elisa had great chemistry together (which helps make up for the insta-lust at the beginning of the book), and the "stalker ex" storyline--especially when the ex is someone with power and influence--is always good for ratcheting up the suspense in a story. I loved that Alex's perceptiveness clued him in almost immediately that Elisa had some major issues with trust and that she was probably on the run from someone or something, and that he was able to understand it and put her at ease. Souse, the German Shepherd dog that Alex had been trying to find a new job for, was one of my favorite secondary characters in the book, and I loved the purpose they do finally find for him. And don't even get me started on Boom. I love that kid. The book's ending is a bit rushed--the way in which Alex and Elisa are separated and the tie-in to an ongoing issue from the first book were both on the abrupt side and almost too convenient, and it's not clear what Elisa is going to be doing with herself professionally by the book's end (though presumably we can find out from Brandon and Sophie's story, Absolute Trust )--combined, these are the main reasons for the four instead of four-and-a-half star rating that I would have given the first 80% of the story. Still, it was one heck of a ride, and once again seeing the characters from the next book here and that gosh darn teaser excerpt at the end has me all but salivating for the next book in the series. Ultimate Courage can absolutely be read as a standalone, though the bit at the very end will make more sense if you've read David and Lyn's story. Since Brandon's won't be out until December(!), though, there's plenty of time to read them both. :) Rating: 4 stars / A- I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
JensReadingObsession More than 1 year ago
Just like the first book of the series, the suspense is light, the romance sweet and sexy, and Souze, the dog in this book, was a huge part of the story. I highly recommend it if you like hot alpha men who are loyal, loving and protective of those they love, amazing dogs with huge personalities that they almost seem human, and strong heroines who still see the best in people even they've been hurt in the past. 4.5 stars I received an ARC via NetGalley for the purpose of an honest review. I was not compensated for this review, all conclusions are my own.
EllenAnderson More than 1 year ago
OUTSTANDING! I have read books by Piper J Drake before and enjoyed them. However, this book managed to keep me enthralled from the first page all the way to the very end. Alex Rojas is a single father who suffers from PTSD. Elisa Hall is on the run from a crazy ex-boyfriend. The two actually meet up in the ER waiting room when Elisa and Boom, Alex's daughter start up a conversation. Very strong characters, both male and female. Human and canine. I found this to be an excellent read and one of my favorites this year, so far. I loved reading about characters from the last book of Ms. Drake's that I read, and am really looking forward to seeing all of these characters in a future book as well. I give this book five stars and would definitely recommend it to family and friends.
Queenbethanny More than 1 year ago
Enjoyable 2nd installment to the True Heroes series. I have been a winner of both books 1 & 2. I have found both entertaining and interesting. This is my first foray into novels concerning retired service men. Alex meets Elisa during a chance encounter at the local ER. He immediately recognizes the signs of a girl on the run. He feels drawn to protect and help her. Elisa is running from a controlling fiance with questionable business practices. She finds shelter at Hope's Crossing Kennels with Alex's assistance. (Add in Boom, Alex's charming daughter and a special German Shepherd names Souze.) Elisa helps Alex deal with his PTSD along with Souze. Alex builds Elisa's confidence, strength and courage. When Elisa's past catches up with her, the "family" at Hope's Crossing Kennels rallies around her and decides to keep her in their fold.
TobiForgetHousework More than 1 year ago
Elisa is on the run from her ex. However, somehow he keeps finding her. When she ends up in the ER of a new town she wants to run, but a young girl she sits next to while waiting draws her in and when she finds her glove she has to take it to her. Not to mention thank the girl's sexy dad for the coffee he gave her. There's something about Elisa that Alex can't turn away from. She's sexy and sweet though he can tell she's on the run. I love Alex, he's dealing with PTSD but knows his limits and works hard to control it for his daughter's sake. He's one hottie mctottie I wouldn't mind wanting to protect me. Elisa is dealing with her past and learning to trust anyone. Boom, Alex's daughter, is awesome in recognizing that she might need help and trying to help. If you enjoy an edge of your seat romance I recommend checking out Ultimate Courage.
ravenwolf_EPTX More than 1 year ago
Another stellar hit with this K9-based Romantic Suspense ✩ ✩ ✩ ✩ ✩ FIVE-STAR ✩ REVIEW ✩ ✩ ✩ ✩ ✩ ⚠ MY THOUGHTS ⚠ ⭐ ⭐ ARC Provided by Publisher via Netgalley in Exchange for an Honest Review ⭐ ⭐ Judging a Book by it's Cover: Fully clothed male holding a gun. His loyal K9 companion at his side. Did not pay too much to the synopsis, to be honest. I really enjoyed the first book and was highly anticipating the second book in the series. Looking Deeper: Third-person POV. Elisa was on the run from a controlling, obsessive and powerful man. She made it clear across the US, but her ex kept toying with her, letting her know that he was still following up on her. She tried to learn from her mistakes, but lacked the know-how and skills to survive for much longer. A chance meeting in an E.R. with Alex and his daughter set into motion a new survival path. Alex is a single dad to a nine/ten year old girl. He was trying to cope with PTSD as a result of his SEAL deployments but afraid to enter into counseling, fearing the ex in-laws would see it as him admitting an inability to properly care for his daughter. He struggled daily but by avoiding as much public interaction as possible he had been able to limit his triggers. She's smart and determined to regain her independence. He's strong and gruff yet generous and kind. Their chemistry was very entertaining to watch grow and develop. It was a gentle, considerate, slow simmer that was reminiscent of a particular Belle and Beast movie. Boom played a wonderful part in the story, as did Souze. The secondary characters were a blend of kennel staff that were introduced in the first book and new cast from the MMA Academy. I'm not sure what became of Souze after Parent's night, he seemed to have been forgotten when Alex went up to see Elisa. Dialogue and cast interaction was rarely otherwise questioned. The plot was full and dynamic with a smooth and well-paced flow. There were not too many conflicts besides her ex, but anytime they arrived at an obstacle, they handled it in believable manners. It felt natural. There was some minor predictability and not much for surprises. The conclusion is settled nicely, with a satisfying implied HEA. Piper J Drake produced another stellar hit with this K9-based Romantic Suspense and I truly look forward to reading ABSOLUTE TRUTH (book 3), due out in December of 2016. Stands alone extremely well despite being the second book in the series. No big Cliffhangers. ----------------------------------------------- Rating: [R] ~ Score: 4.5 ~ Stars: 5 -----------------------------------------------
My_Peace More than 1 year ago
I am so glad I read Ultimate Courage by Piper J. Drake! I loved it. It was one of those books I didn't want to end, because I felt so involved in the plot! Piper J. Drake took the theme of an abused woman on the run to a whole new level, and wrote a well developed, emotional story in Ultimate Courage. Alex and Elisa are both powerful main characters. Neither of them are perfect, in fact they are both flawed and have issues they are working through. Neither of them is looking for any kind of relationship, but the instant attraction is there. I loved Alex. He is so strong and protective, and determined not to let his problems take over his life. It is very difficult for him, but he works hard at it. I loved how he was with Elisa...so patient, caring and very observant. He saw more than she was telling him from the start. I loved Elisa also. She is brave, determined, and very strong. I loved her as a heroine because she didn't hide her past, and slowly (but not too slowly!) opened up to Alex and his friends. She didn't want to take help, but she did because she knew she had to. She is very cautious though. I liked that she wasn't a heroine determined to do everything on her own and she didn't keep secrets about her past. I liked that she didn't paint all men with the same brush as her ex. I admired both of these characters greatly for what they went through in the past to the issues they are facing today. The developing relationship between Alex and Elisa felt very right. I liked the progression of it and that it wasn't perfect. I had high hopes that Elisa could put her past to rest and move onto a better future. Both of these characters made their way into my heart, and they felt like real people as I was reading. The alternating POV's between Alex and Elisa worked well to bring me into their lives. The secondary characters are mainly people from Hope's Crossing, from colleagues to Alex's daughter. They are a perfect fit for this story, and I loved the connection between them all. It felt like a group of friends I'd love to be a part of. I loved, loved the animal theme in Ultimate Courage. It really helped make the book for me. Especially Souze. Even his doggy character developed well and grew through out the story, and I really liked how Piper did this. Piper J. Drake writes the suspenseful, stalker part of the plot in a way that weaves in perfectly with romance. Alex and Elisa's relationship and all it encompasses is the main theme, but who Elisa is running from is always there in the undercurrents, and you can't help but feel a little shiver now and then, wondering what would happen. Ultimate Courage by Piper J. Drake had it all for me! A mature, realistic relationship between two people I came to care about, enough suspense and unknowns to keep me a little on edge, and a host of secondary characters who all fit so well with the plot. Very well paced with great flow, I'm not sure what I can read next that will compare to Ultimate Courage! I'd highly recommend Ultimate Courage to any romance reader! I received a free copy for an honest review.
ReadingInPajamas More than 1 year ago
Release Blitz, Review & Giveaway: ULTIMATE (True Heroes #2) by Piper J. Drake http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-5TA Publication Date: July 26, 2016 Reviewed by: Reading in Pajamas/ Donna Rated 5 Stars REVIEW: Oh what fun this book was! I could not put it down to even cook dinner! I related to Elisa right off and my heart (body) palpitated after Alex. He was the kind of rock that makes you sigh with want. His instinctive way of handling Elisa and her problems just added to the hot chemistry between them. Then you add in the tense story and you have a book that ticks off every check mark on my list. I love the people in the True Heroes series and their interactions seem so natural that I found myself immersed in the story. A true edge of your seat book with enough heat to keep me thinking about it long after it ended. *Review copy provided Forever Romance in exchange for an honest review.
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
Nothing screams fresh new start like loading all your belongings in the trunk of your car, and hitting the open road in search of a new life. Elisa Hall is tired of feeling broken and being abused and has finally found the courage to walk away and leave it all behind... now she just has to hope in doesn't follow her! Alex Rojas returns home from serving overseas to find his home empty and divorce papers waiting for him, instead of his wife and daughter ready to greet him. Now not only is he left to adjust to civilian life on his own, but also now he must find a way to create a whole new life for himself and his daughter. Taking a job at Hope's Crossings Kennels seems to be pretty perfect for him, working with the dogs is the somewhat therapeutic and helps him feel like he's putting his skills to use, and giving him a purpose again. But his world gets shaken up again when a beautiful woman clearly hiding from something shows up on his doorstep.. As soon as I read the synopsis for this one I knew it was going to be a good read, it had me instantly intrigued and dying to know more about these two alluring characters... and I am happy to report their story did not disappoint!! It turned out to be one very spicy and enthralling read that had me staying up well past my bedtime just to finish it...and I have to say it was WELL worth the loss of sleep!! This was my first time reading something from this author, and I am quite certain it won't be my last, she totally won me over with this one!! Highly recommend this suspenseful and sexy little tale, it's sure to keep you flying through the pages!! ARC requested through NetGalley, and kindly provided by Forever Publishing in exchange for a honest and unbiased review.
LynnB888 More than 1 year ago
4 1/2 STARS! Lots of intrigue & romance! It was nice to see the old gang from Book 1 and to get to know more about some of the others. I connected much better with the main characters of this book than I did with the first one … I felt satisfied with the depth and dialogue. Elisa Hall is on the move to get away from a controlling relationship when she happens to run into Alex Rojas and his daughter Serena. They are kind to her at a time when she needs the comfort, and it makes a lasting impression on her. Alex Rojas is still trying to get his feet back underneath him here in the real world after his former life as a Navy SEAL and adjusting to life as a single father takes a lot of adjustment. He and his daughters have settled in with friends at Hope’s Crossing Kennels where he trains dogs with former military pals, but it’s still a work in progress to get used to life again. When Elisa shows up at the kennel to return something Serena dropped when they met, Alex sees she needs friends to help her, and the gang rallies around to be that for her. As she and Alex tread softly into the attraction they feel for each other, will there be a happy ending here, or will her past life come in the middle of it?
In_My_Humble_OpinionDA More than 1 year ago
Hunky men, dogs and romantic suspense. This book rocked! Hope’s Crossing kennel provides a second chance for abused working dogs and the former military guys that run it. Alex Rojas is a former SEAL and single father employed by Hope’s Crossing kennel. When he runs across a scared and hurting Elisa Hall in the hospital emergency room he can’t help but play knight in slightly rusty armor. This story has Alex, Elisa and a German Shepherd Dog named Souze bringing out the best in each other. There is action and intrigue but mostly there is love and caring. A terrific tale.
bouncyberthaCR More than 1 year ago
3.5 - "This is a place made for second chances." Stars! Ultimate Courage is the second book in Piper J. Drakes', True Heroes series. This is my first read by the author and of this series, so it can absolutely be read as a standalone. To be honest, the thing that immediately drew me to this one was the cover, the guy looks a lot like Jamie Dornan, the blurb intrigued as well, so I was happy to dip into it with Dornan firmly front and center in my mind’s eye. This place, these people, there were stories here. I really enjoyed most of this story, both Elisa and Alex are dealing with some pretty hefty demons, Alex as a single father is trying to function normally on a daily basis well enough to be able to work competently training service dogs at Hopes Crossing Kennels, and raise his ten year old daughter, whilst also dealing with severely debilitating PTSD. Elisa is essentially on the run from her ex, unwittingly she has turned herself into the key to all he holds important and as such he is not prepared to let her go without a fight. Because they are both struggling with things that most people wouldn’t understand it helps them to feel a sort of affinity to the other, add to it a strong case of instant attraction and it isn’t long before Alex is looking to make more of their association, but he leaves the ball firmly in Elise’s court as to how far, and fast they move forwards.. "This isn’t anything we need to rush… I can stop if you want…" "No… No, I don’t want you to stop. I just… need to find my way through every step as we go. And this thing between us is new and complicated, and I don’t want it to get twisted up in the process…" "We can take it slow." This was extremely easy reading, and I didn’t struggle at all to stay invested in the story-line, Alex, Elise and all of the secondary characters were really great to get to know as the book progressed, you can feel the kinship between them all, and even though not blood related they have built their own family, that supports and understands each other. But I do have a couple of gripes in that, I feel more depth and scope could have been used in relation to Alex’s issues, I loved the inclusion of Souze the dog in relation to this, and how through the story’s arc he became more than just a dog-in-training, but at points his struggles almost seemed to be an afterthought, or in the latter stages used as a way to bring on the action. The second thing, and what dropped a full star for me was the last 15%, everything seemed to be thrown into it in a mad rush to get across the finish line, what with throwing in random 'friends' who really weren’t friends, and Alex doing a complete one-eighty against his personality for the previous 85% of the book, it produced a little eye-rolling from me to be honest. I expected action to commence at some point due to the nature of Elisa’s being on the run, but it just all fell a bit flat after all the build-up it received through the rest of the book, and then the ease of its resolution detracted from the initial seriousness of the plot-line. That-said, I loved all the secondary characters, I am definitely going to go back at some point and read the first book from this series Extreme Honor, and the final book in the trilogy Absolute Trust is also due for release in December of this year, so not too long to wait. ARC generously provided, in exchange for the above honest review.