I don’t know how I haven’t run into Rebecca York before now. I’m a big fan of paranormal romantic suspense so when the opportunity came to review an ARC of “Boxed In” I said, “Why not?” I’m glad I did. This story is nothing like I expected. Recent college grad Olivia has always dreamed of owning her own antique shop, but before she can do that she needs to pay off a heap of student debt. Which means she’s stuck working for a slimy and morally-challenged boss. The kind of boss who openly ogles his employees' assets and buys stolen merchandise which he then expects Olivia to catalogue for resale. Enter Luke, computer tech and undercover security expert. His job is to retrieve one of the stolen objects. He didn’t plan on falling for Olivia. And he definitely didn’t plan on being possessed by the guardian of an ancient sacred object, Zabastian.
Color me hooked. The pace was just right. There was an ongoing tension that fans of thrillers like “Hunt for Red October” or “The DaVinci Code” will appreciate, but it was mixed with a sexy flavor reminiscent of Laurel K. Hamilton. That was probably helped by the kind of sort of multiple man thing. Seriously is it a threesome when there’s two people in one of the participants' heads?
I’m kind of head tilting like a puppy trying to figure it out.
So moving on.
Olivia was an interesting character. She had her own wants and desires separate from the hero and the overarching plot. She had skills that were utilized and respected. Luke was also kind of fun. A wannabe field agent but really a tech guy forced to pretend he’s something he’s not. He respected the heck out of Olivia before his possession and that never wavered. I really loved Olivia and Luke together both as a team and as a couple, especially when they teamed up against Zabastian-in-Luke’s-Body. That was something very unique. Zabastian was a typical historical alpha male, complete with chauvinistic tendencies. However, neither Luke nor Olivia let him get away with it. His attempts to do it his way often caused the situation to worsen, and he’d need teamwork to get out of it.
Zabastian also had some serious ass trauma. Imagine being stuck in a box for millennia as a punishment/curse/repentance kind of thing and coming out of it sane. He wasn’t. He was a bit like the Terminator in regards to his mission, but there was also something kind of broken about his dedication. He believed in what he was doing, but his job had taken its toll.
It was a refreshing take. Another bonus, you don’t need to read the previous books to enjoy this one. That’s often a failing of series romance. But this one is full and complete and leaves the reader satisfied. There are some characters I’m sure had previous books. But they were in a supporting role and everything you needed to know was presented to the reader.
I read this in a night and loved it.
In all I’m happy to give this Five Stars.
*** I received an ARC of this book through NetGalley
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