Review: Reed (Hell Squad)

cover-reedTitle: Reed
Author: Anna Hackett
Series: Hell Squad #4
Genre: Sci-Fi Romance
Length: Short Novel
Available: Now


As part of Hell Squad, former Coalition Navy SEAL Reed MacKinnon fights for humanity’s freedom from the alien invaders. He also fights for his brown-eyed girl—the woman he rescued from the aliens’ secret laboratory. He admires her quiet strength and will to survive, not to mention her elfin looks and curvy body…but he knows he has to keep his distance. She’s nowhere near ready for what he has to offer and he’ll protect her from everything, even his own powerful desires.

Energy scientist Natalya Vasin has lived through hell. Still struggling after her captivity, scarred by the aliens’ experimentation, all she wants is to be normal again…and she wants Reed MacKinnon. But the rugged soldier is holding back, treating her like glass, and she won’t accept that from anybody.

As Reed and Natalya wage a sensual battle of desires, they also work together to decipher a mysterious alien energy cube. Hell Squad needs Natalya’s expertise and they need her to go back into alien territory to use it. But on a mission to destroy an alien outpost, secrets are uncovered—of what the raptors really did to Natalya. Secrets that mean the future she wants with Reed is just an impossible dream.

Source: ARC from the author

I love this series. Really, it has everything – they’re quick, easy reads full of action, adventure, love, sexy alpha guys (who aren’t assholes) and strong, competent women who can easily hold their own in this alien apocalypse. There are laser guns, huge explosions, stealth aircraft, intriguing tech, oh, and those aliens – dinosaur aliens! I love it.

This latest installment was no exception. Reed is a sexy ex-SEAL who’s now Hell Squad’s explosions expert. He’s fairly laid back and though he has a few demons and dark memories of his own, he seems to carry his burdens lightly. He’s also big on protecting people – especially Natalya, the scientist he helped rescue from an raptor facility and who he’s been watching ever since, waiting for her to heal enough for him to make his move.

Natalya doesn’t want to wait. She’s a smart woman who’s been through a horrifying experience and what she really wants is to get back to normal. Having Reed treat her like a healthy woman – instead of something broken – would go a long way in fixing that. But these two people are both stubborn – Reed’s protective instincts are very strong, while Natalya has her own pride to work with. I liked the two of them together, though. They fit really well.

Things on the alien invasion front are hotting up too, with new threats emerging from the raptor camp and innovative new attack strategies coming from the humans. The missions are upping in danger and intensity and the stakes remain high throughout. It’s all very good and exciting and I’m fascinated by both super-tracker Devlin and the intriguing squad leader, Roth (I want to know more about his mostly female squad too).

Much as I enjoyed everything, though, I do feel as though some of the intensity in the romance was missing for me. This is possibly due to Reed being utterly angst-free (which is definitely not a criticism), or possibly I simply didn’t connect with Natalya as much as other heroines in this series… I don’t know. It was good and I enjoyed it, but the whole thing was maybe a bit too straightforward and simple and lacking in tension.

However, that’s fairly minor because it didn’t stop me from thoroughly enjoying this one. It’s fast and furious and fun and an excellent addition to the series. That brief third POV chapter suggests that Roth is going to be up next, meaning no Claudia and Shaw just yet (arrrrrrgh, I need their story!), but the prospect of this series moving outside the immediate Hell Squad fills me with equal parts possibilities and joy (Noah! And that pilot whose name escapes me right now). Can’t wait for more!

Reed is Out Now!
Visit Anna Hackett for more details.


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