Archive for March 29th, 2013


Evan Donovan is a big muscled giant of a man, whose size and strength make him uniquely qualified to be a smoke jumper. No matter how great or how treacherous the challenge, he gets the job done. But when he agrees to look in on a friend’s ex-wife after a suspicious brushfire, Evan learns that some jobs are too hot to handle. Especially when it involves a scorchingly sexy woman…


Faye Duncan is a photographer on a mission, shooting fires for a magazine. But her first encounter with a wildfire isn’t nearly as wild as her first night with Evan Donovan. The moment she meets the bigger-than-life hero, the sparks begin to fly. But things really catch fire when Evan learns she may have taken a photo of the arsonist setting the fires. Evan is determined to keep Faye safe. But if he expects her to trust him with her life, he’ll have to open up his heart—even if someone gets burned…



SLOW BURN, the second in The Smoke Jumper series, released earlier this week on March 26th.  The minute I read about smoke jumpers, I knew I had to make them the heroes of a series. The elite of the wildland firefighters, smoke jumpers parachute into the very heart of the smoke and flames. The first and last line of defense between small town Northern California and the fires that burn there every summer, the smoke jumpers are protectors to their core, putting their lives on the line with every jump. Hard-bodied, rough around the edges, and absolutely determined to do whatever it takes to hold the line between the wildfires and civilization, smoke jumpers are the ultimate bad boys of summer who ride into town to protect and defend—and leave as soon as the flames are out.


Of course, I like setting things on fire, in no small part due to the firemen who show up—and Jack Donovan is one heck of a firefighter. Together with his brothers, he runs a smoke jumping operation and parachutes into danger without hesitation. There’s nothing he won’t do to keep Strong, California safe.


Whether you  want your firefighter dark and gritty, or whether you’re looking for a sweeter read, I have plenty of favorites parked on my keeper shelf. There are plenty more books that could go on here, but these are the ones that stuck in my head and that are my go-to reads. After all, it’s hard not to fall in love with a fireman!


  1. Bromance. Reading J.R. Ward introduced me to the term, but I’m hooked. Smoke jumpers, hotshots, firemen—they come in packs of the non-furry sort and they share a close bond with their brothers-in-arms. Some talk more than others, while others would settle for an emotive punch-in-the-arm and passing of a beer, but they always, always have each other’s back. The firefighters of Station Five in Jo Davis’s TRIAL BY FIRE are a delicious example of this.
  2. Action. There’s plenty of action when things keep going up in flames. Buildings, forests—and the heroine. That works for me. It’s amazing how close two people can get, both physically and emotionally, when lives at stake. One of my favorite parts of Cynthia Eden’s DEADLY HEAT is the intense attraction between Special Agent Kenton Lake and Lora Spade. Plus, anytime the heroine rescues the hero? Love it!
  3. Uniforms. I admit it, I’m a sucker for a man in uniform. And getting him out of that uniform? Is even better. Kensington did a fabulous job on my covers stripping the hero out of his clothes (and there’s video of it too! http://ti.me/vACN6w)
  4. The villains. When you start setting things on fire, you get some complex, twisted villains. Nora Roberts’ BLUE SMOKE, anyone?
  5. Honor. These are men—and women—who do the right thing. Who ride out on the truck or jump out of the plane, because there’s a job that needs doing and they’re willing to do it. No matter what it takes—and even if it takes everything. Lindsay McKenna’s wounded hero in DEADLY SILENCE isn’t easy to forget.


And my favorite part of firefighter romance? The welcome home, when the fire’s out, and he’s coming home, sooty and tired and victorious. When the hero of SLOW BURN, Evan Donovan, lands after a tough fight against a stubborn wildland fire, he heads straight for Faye Duncan’s arms:


“I need a shower,” he growled. “Something to eat. And sleep. Sleep would be real good right now.”

She sat there. What else did he need? What did he want? He prowled closer, as if there was something, all right, and despite the guys all around them, it was as if they were alone in their own little space. That, or maybe Evan’s jump team had more manners than she’d given them credit for.

He leaned over her, caging her in his arms. “You want to know what else I need right now, Faye?” His smoke-blackened face was fierce and triumphant.

“You tell me,” she murmured, “and I’ll make sure you get it.”

“That sounds good.” He was close enough now that his mouth was only inches from hers. The good manners were fading now; some of the jumpers called good-natured jibes, watching the two of them getting up-close and personal on the stairs. “I want that shower. You want to know why?”

She looked at him, but, God, his thumb was caressing the corner of her mouth, and she didn’t have anything more to say.

“Because,” he continued, his voice rough and low, “I’m taking you to bed, Faye, unless you say no. I want to hole up and make love to you and forget all about this damned fire for a night. I don’t even want to talk about it.”

“No talking, just kisses. Got it,” she said breathlessly.

He backed her into the stairs, letting her feel the hard metal railing at her back. “So you up for kissing me all better tonight, Faye?”

He didn’t wait for her answer. Instead, he kissed her, hard and raw and primitive. His mouth devoured her, his fingers threading through her hair. She was pinned in place. There was no shame, no worry about any audience. Only him and her. She gave back as good as she got. She wanted this connection. His mouth on hers and hers on his. He was alive, and he was there, and, in that moment, this homecoming was all that mattered.



Have a firefighter book to suggest to me? I love adding to my TBR pile! Name names for a chance to win a $20 gift card to the online bookstore of your choice (Amazon, B&N, Kobo… winner’s choice!)


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