Title: Serve & Protect (D.C. Files, #1)
Author: Megan Linden
Publisher: MRL Press
Release Date: May 28, 2015
Page Count: 167
Reviewed by: Gigi
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
What happens when you fall in love in the heart of politics?
Sam Daniels’ life turns upside down when he meets an amazing guy and gets a job offer he can’t refuse almost at the same time. Working in politics and sustaining any kind of personal life is never easy, but when you’re running a campaign to elect the first woman to the office of the President of the United States, it may become nearly impossible.
Blake Morin, after spending years as a SEAL, lives a quiet life with his daughter and he’s fine with that. He can’t deny the attraction between him and Sam, but is he ready to enter the world he used to avoid?
Campaign manger MC Sam Daniels is hanging out at a Washington DC bar, lamenting the fact that his boss is retiring and he doesn’t know what to do next. Ex Navy SEAL and current flight instructor at the US Naval Test Pilot School, Blake Morin sees Sam and asks if he can have a seat at Sam’s table in the very crowded bar. The men have a nice, casual discussion and Sam starts to feel a lot better about his future unknown. Eventually, the boys flirt a little bit and find out they are both gay and the attraction is mutual. So, this is the part where the run off to fuck like bunnies and eventually fall in love, the end. Right? Not even close!
One of the many things I found so refreshing and sweet about Serve & Protect was the fact that these boys decided to take their mutual attraction down a few notches and actually have a few dates before jumping into bed. It made for a serious hot first time, filled with emotion. As it turns out, Blake (view spoiler) Meanwhile, Sam has just taken a new position which will include long hours and lots and lots of travel for the next 2 years. Sam is up front with Blake right away too, telling him that this job is very important to him and if he and Blake start a relationship, it might not be smooth sailing because of all the time they will be separated. But after voicing each of their concerns, they decide to give a relationship a go. The rest of the book spans 18 months, until the end of Sam’s position.
I really, really enjoyed this book, especially with how mature and honest the MCs were and how hot that made the sex. They struggled with many common obstacles and dealt with them calmly with lots of discussion. As much as I love a good lover’s quarrel, ending in awesome make-up sex, that just did not happen here. The boys really wanted to make their young, fragile relationship work and did a great job communicating their frustration and needs to one another.
There were a few problems I had with the book. The fact that the boys never did have a big blow-out fight was kind of a bummer. I found myself waiting for everything to blow-up because of the incredible stress both men were under, but it never did. Another big problem I had is that since the story is told from Sam’s POV, we never got to go to work with Blake and see what he does as a Navy pilot. And since the two rarely talked about it, were got next to no information. Also, even though the HEA was implied and both men were deeply in love in the end, the book ended after a very stressful moment so we weren’t able to see any of the fallout and/or peace after said moment. This is definitely a book that I’d read a sequel to see exactly how the boys ended up. Since the book is the first in the DC Files series, I may get my wish.
I can recommend this low-angst love story to all M/M romance fans. It was honest and mature and very real. I wish nothing but love and luck for Sam and Blake in all their future endeavors!