The Protector by Jodi Ellen Malpas
People think they have Camille Logan nailed: daddy's girl; beautiful, spoiled young woman with her father's bank balance to fund her lifestyle. But Camille is determined to have a life free from his strings. Out on her own, she's made mistakes, including one that found her clawing her way back after a stint in rehab and plenty of bad press. Now, after fighting so hard to be independent and happy, she finds her life threatened as a result of her father's ruthless business dealings. Caught between resentment and fear, Camille prepares herself for the measures her father will take to protect her. But nothing could prepare her for the ex-SAS sniper who crashes into her life.
Jake Sharp resides in his own personal hell. He was distracted from duty once before, and the consequences were devastating--both personally and professionally. He vowed never to let that happen again. Accepting the job of bodyguard to Camille Logan isn't the kind of distraction from his demons he should take. Women and Jake don't mix well, yet protecting the heiress seems the lesser of two evils. But Jake soon discovers that she isn't the woman she's perceived to be. She's warm, compassionate, her presence settling, and his duty to protect her soon goes deeper than a well-paid job, no matter how hard he fights it. He needs absolution. He comes to need Camille. But he knows he can't have both.
I’m not sure how Jodi does it but she’s created another man you cannot help but love in Jake Sharp.
It’s like she has a sixth sense for just what qualities make a man irresistible to women. Doesn’t matter if the man is fictional…
Jake’s not perfect… You know what, I take that back, he may be built like a god…but, emotionally? That man is a hot mess. He’s been pretty fucked over by his past and he didn’t handle it all that well. Which of course led to more regrets, more self loathing and more self destructive behavior… it’s a vicious cycle. He does best when he keeps his mind busy or his body sated… So, Camille, being completely opposite of what he expects, throws him for a loop. Yeah, she’ll keep his mind busy, because he has to stay sharp to keep her safe and she’s smart has hell, but he’s also lusting after her pretty hard, which would be great for the sating, but not so great for staying alert…
It doesn’t help that there are some serious inconsistencies in the information Jake’s being provided as proof of the threat against Camille. He’s stuck between his lust for Cami and figuring out whether the threat is or isn’t real… The wrong determination could have seriously horrible consequences.
Camille was a surprise and I judged Camille just as unfairly as Jake did. I assumed that someone who lived her life style and makes her living being beautiful had to have very little to offer and was kind of shallow. I was just as surprised as he was that she was very down to earth, unassuming and kind. She was loyal to her friends and had a real reason to want nothing to do with her ex. I kind of felt bad that I had judged her so harshly. And don’t even get me started on how she felt about her father… he was an arsehole and didn’t deserve Camille’s loyalty or love.
Jake and Cami are a couple that are going to stick with you. The conflict between what they want and what they know they shouldn’t have is a real and constant struggle and the story will drag you along with them right to the thrilling end.