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The Protector: A sexy, angsty, all-the-feels romance with a hot alpha hero Paperback – September 6, 2016
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"4.5 stars. Top Pick. Readers will love this book from the very beginning! The characters are so real and flawed that fans feel as if they're alongside them. Malpas' writing is also spot-on with emotions."―RT Book Reviews
"[Jake and Camille] together were great. Although both have their pasts and demons they came together and it was a joy to read...This is the first book I've read from Jodi Ellen Malpas, but she's has become a favorite in one read."
―Night Owl Review
About the Author
Jodi Ellen Malpas was born and raised in the Midlands town of Northampton, UK, where she lives with her family. Working for the family construction business full time and with the prospect of taking it over once her father retired, she tried to ignore the lingering idea of writing a novel until it became impossible. She finally found the time and courage to release her creative streak and in October 2012 self-published This Man as an ebook. She took a chance on a story with some intense characters, notably Mr. Jesse Ward, the Lord of the Manor, and sparked incredible reactions from women all over the world. Two months later, Jodi made the decision to give up her day job to concentrate on her new and very unexpected career in writing.
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Top Customer Reviews
An intriguing blurb plus an awesome cover do not necessarily guarantee a good read—and such was the case with The Protector.
Between the odd choice of descriptors, excessive amount of exclamation points, and the use of certain dialogue tags, I couldn't help but wonder if the book had been professionally edited at all. All the spitting and spluttering was off-putting, to say the very least.
Cami Logan is a twenty-five-year-old fashion model and aspiring designer—or half of one, at least. She does the sketching, her friend does the sewing. Then there was her stint in rehab for cocaine addiction, but now that that's behind her, she's ready to get back to her busy schedule of shopping, drinking, the odd photoshoot here and there, and having girls' days with her BFF, where they paint each other's nails, giggle like school girls, and drink copious amounts of wine. But she'll have you know she's more than just a pretty face. Like, duh.
Before long, Cami gets summoned to her rich daddy’s office, a guy I couldn’t help but to picture as Donald Trump, where she’s informed that, thanks to his shady business practices, her life is in danger, and, as such, good old daddy is taking precautionary measures to ensure her safety.
Enter Jake Sharp, a thirty-five-year-old, emotionally stunted, ex-military sniper, and Cami's hired bodyguard. Jake is supposedly the best money could buy. With a 100k a week price tag, he should've been, but that just wasn't the case. Cami easily gave him the slip, the first of many, within five minutes of meeting him. Well, that was money well spent.
From that point on, I couldn't take Jake seriously as a respectable, top-of-the-line bodyguard. He failed to live up to his reputation. It was amateur hour all around, to be honest. He didn’t even do any of the hard work himself. He’d kick back, make a phone call to Lucinda, his partner of a sort, and let her do all the work for him. He even got the added bonus of sticking it to his new boss by sleeping with his daughter. Way to earn that paycheck, Jake.
I had a hard time buying into the romance. Between Cami's juvenile demeanor and Jake's issues—his no strings, no attachments, closed-off emotions—I would've thought things would've been just a little more difficult between them. However, that wasn't the case. The romance was fairly easy. I just had a hard time believing that Jake, the same guy who callously kicked his one-night stands out of his home, could so easily develop this all-consuming, desperate love without a hitch.
The Protector is told from alternating first-person points of view. Something that, depending on the author, I'm just not all that fond of. Perhaps my opinion of Jake would've been different if half the story wasn't told from his perspective.
I wouldn’t have liked Jake either way; not after it was revealed that he had a dead wife and a four-year-old daughter whom he abandoned, because, apparently, it was easier to talk himself into believing the little girl wasn’t his, due to his wife's infidelity, than it was to man up and take care of her. After he abandoned his daughter, leaving her to be raised by her aunt, he spent his time having meaningless one-night stands and taking care of various people who requested his services. How noble of him. There was absolutely no coming back from that, at least not in my eyes.
This book had all the markings of a good romance. Pretty cover, ex-military hero, and an interesting blurb. Unfortunately, I just couldn't warm to the characters. Cami, for all her talk of being an independent woman, fell into the TSTL category. And as for Jake, well, I couldn't get over the fact that he seemed to struggle more over the death of his two military buddies than he did over the abandonment of his own daughter—or, hell, even the death of his wife. I'm sorry, but a man who would abandon his child is not a man, and certainly not the kind of hero I could get behind. Yet, miraculously, once Cami entered his life, he was suddenly ready to be a father—four years after the fact. Yeah, okay. But of course, being the end of the book, it was all rainbows and sunshine and happily ever after.
Overall, the execution left a lot to be desired. The book was overly long and hard to slog through at times, and had inconsistencies that were hard to ignore. At least fifty pages could've been shaved off and the reader would've been none the worse for it. I couldn't connect with the characters. The writing was bland. Furthermore, it took forever to resolve the central conflicts. I found myself bored with the progression of the plot, especially in regard to the threats against Cami, of which she herself didn't even care about. Ultimately, this was a miss for me.
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 messed up 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 a jerk 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.