Monday, March 10, 2014

Unwrapping a Review of ALL FOR YOU, a Coming Home novel by Jessica Scott

I suppose one of the reasons I have an affinity for military-based romance novels is because I was raised an Army brat. Another is because Jessica Scott writes such emotion and realism into her military characters that I can nearly smell the musty, subtly mildew smell of everything Army surrounding them as they maneuver their way through life in the military.

***eARC provided by author via NetGalley awarded to me as a win in a giveaway. I wasn’t asked for a review but I can’t resist sharing my thoughts with you.

Blurb for ALL FOR YOU:

Can a battle-scarred warrior . . .

Stay sober. Get deployed. Lead his platoon. Those are the only things that matter to Sergeant First Class Reza Iaconelli. What he wants is for everyone to stay out of his way; what he gets is Captain Emily Lindberg telling him how to deal with his men. Fort Hood's newest shrink is smart as a whip and sexy as hell. She's also full of questions—about the army, its soldiers, and the agony etched on Reza's body and soul.

. . . open his heart to love?

Emily has devoted her life to giving soldiers the care they need—and deserve. Little does she know that means facing down the fierce wall of muscle that is Sergeant Iaconelli like it's just another day at the office. When Reza agrees to help her understand what makes a soldier tick, she's thrilled. Too bad it doesn't help her unravel the sexy warrior in front of her who stokes her desire and touches a part of her she thought long dead. He's the man who thinks combat is the only escape from the demons that haunt him. The man who needs her most of all . . .

*                *                 *                *                 *

Sergeant First Class Reza Iaconelli lives with the everyday stress of commanding men, training soldiers to survive in combat, and dealing with officers who don’t seem to give a rat’s ass about the men but only promotions and looking good in reviews. In addition to the everyday stress, Reza battles the demons from his past, from his multiple deployments, and the sense of failure that haunts him as he comes to realize he may be losing the battle on the home front as well as on the battlefield. He refuses to see the ghosts that haunt those around him until a tough little head doctor stands up to him and punches him in the gut with her feisty attitude and the truth.

Captain Emily Lindberg joined the Army to escape a world where she felt she wasn’t doing any good as a doctor, and a family who wanted her to do things their way, including marry a man who cheated on her with her best friend. The Army wasn’t exactly what she expected, and neither are the men in uniform with whom she must deal. One man in particular is bigger than life with an attitude like a brick wall, but she’s sees something beneath that hard exterior and it’s touched something deep inside her that wants to help him help his men who are in trouble. Even more so, she wants to try to save the men who are the verge of destroying themselves, and one of those men might just be the one she’s come to care about the most.

Jessica Scott writes with a passion that could only come from someone who truly knows her characters, inside and out, or having known someone who has walked in similar shoes. This is not to say that she suffers the same demons, but like anyone who has ever known or dealt with someone suffering traumatizing after affects or addiction; she’s seen things that once branded on our brains never fades away. Within Reza exists the hero warrior, the traumatized boy who saw more than he should have for one so young, and a man who questions his own actions every moment out of fear of causing another’s demise because he may not be paying attention when it’s most important. He drowns his demons, his fears, and his desires in alcohol and then curses the drink for making him weak when he needs to be strong to lead his men. Reza Iaconelli is a broken, torn man that we cannot help but commiserate with, fall in love with, and wish to save just as Emily Lindberg does in ALL FOR YOU.

Jessica touches on subjects that most people don’t want to admit exist in our Armed Forces. Subjects that, as in ALL FOR YOU, are swept under the rug, ignored, or blamed on the drugs and alcohol used to self-medicate so that traumatized soldiers can sleep even a few hours a night. War is hell is an understatement – life after war is the true hell.

I highly recommend ALL FOR YOU, book four in the Coming Home series by Jessica Scott because it’s more than just a touching and emotional love story but because it’s a look into the world of the soldier from a view we’d all much rather pretend doesn’t exist. In ALL FOR YOU by Jessica Scott, we watch as a young, inexperienced officer takes a turn in a shoot house that leaves her understanding that a lot of training goes into the making of a good soldier. We watch men who want more than anything to prove themselves good soldiers succumb to the pressures of Army life, and experience the heartbreak of a hero taking his life because everything is about to be taken away from him that he worked so hard to gain. ALL FOR YOU is a must read romance that will leave you with more than a happily-ever-after, you’ll find yourself wishing you could do so much more for our men in uniform.

Happy Reading Everyone!

ALL FOR YOU, a Coming Home novel by Jessica Scott, Forever Publishers, available now in ebook formats at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks.

***click on links or cover below for purchasing information



The_Book_Queen said...

What a lovely review, and you definitely hit on why I love her books so much! She knows what she is writing, and more importantly she CARES about these characters, and her readers as well. Reza's book was so hard, but done so well.


Amy Valentini said...

Thanks TBQ. I knew when I first met Reza in UNTIL THERE WAS YOU that I wanted - needed - to know what made him the way he was. It was a tough story to read but it's definitely also what made it so gut-wrenchingly sweeter. Glad you enjoyed it, too.