Reviewed By: Harriet Klausner
Amazon US PB Amazon Canada PB
Class/Genre: Mystery Romance Military
Avon, Jan 2005, $5.99, 384 pp.
In Southeast Asia, Covert Ops SEAL Zola “Jazz” Zeringue intercedes when a pimp and a GI barter over an underage girl by paying cash for her. When the elderly grandmamson tries to stop him from following the child into the back room, he ignores her to make sure the child is safe. Interpol arrests Jazz for having sex with a minor.
Grandmamson is actually Vivienne “Vivi” Verreau undercover working for GEM, but currently serving as the liaison between the United Third World of Women and the UN. Vivi interviews Jazz, who says he just wanted to protect Rose, who affirms his testimony. Vivi frees him.
Jazz is attracted to Vivi, but she hates soldiers who kill or rape and plunder. Vivi and GEM lead Jazz and his squad on a mission to stop European weapons dealer Dilaver peddling his toys to the Triad brothers, dealers in drugs and girl prostitution. They are to allow GEM to extract the girls and steal the weapons, but allow Dilaver to escape thinking the Triad attacked him. This is the first step in a widening plot to catch bigger fish.
This is a strong suspense thriller that excitingly ties together the fight against international drug, weapons, and underage girl trafficking into a fine tale starring two likable strong lead protagonists. The locale and the secondary cast add authenticity to the fine story line. Readers will shake their heads when the lead couple stops while on the lam to make love. Although the cleverly devised final confrontation is more a set up to Hawk’s future tale than a closing climax, romantic suspense readers will gain high levels of pleasure from THE PROTECTOR.
Reprinted with permission. Do Not repost without permission from the author, Harriet Klausner