April 10, 2013

Review: Surrender by Stephanie Tyler

Series: Section 8, 1
Format: Word
Release Date: April 2, 2013

Publisher: Signet
Source: Book It Tours
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense

For former Navy SEAL Dare O’Rourke, Section 8 was legendary. The son of one of its missing members, he grew up in the shadow of its secrets. All he knew was that it was a cabal of operatives discharged from branches of the military and reassigned to extremely dangerous, off- the-books international missions. And that their handler was as shrouded in mystery as the missions themselves.


Now the handler of Section 8 has given orders to kill any remaining members, along with their families. Dare must save his long-lost half sister, Avery, whom he was never meant to meet. Determined to fight for their lives and find their missing father, Dare and Avery bring together for one last mission those who are in danger because of their relationship to Section 8—to avenge their families and to survive.
First off I want to express my sincerest apology to Dawn of Book It Tours! Girl, I'm so sorry this review is late. Something came up over the weekend and I wasn't able to finish the book in a timely manner and then things got push back so now I'm catching up. Thanks for understanding! I owe you one!

Back to business...

SURRENDER is book one of Stephanie Tyler's brand new procedural series, Section 8. It's full of action with a side of romance about a bunch of CIA legacies. Before I scramble your brains let me explain for a bit. Section 8 is a covert CIA group of agents or mercenaries, depending on how you look at it, formed to take care of really dangerous and highly classified government missions. They were disbanded but then they've been reformed by their "boss" Rip Powell which turned out to be a big clean-up. One by one, each member was killed along with their families but the buck stopped with Darius O'Rourke. His children are tough like their dad and now it's up to them to stop Rip and continue the legacy of Section 8.

That's a very simplified summation and I promise it's more complicated than what I pose it to be. SURRENDER has some intense conspiracies, complicated connections, life-changing revelations, lots of repressed anger, family drama and unlikely allegiances. The blurb hints at Dare being the main character and in a way he is as he's the leader of what I dub, Legacy Section 8, but truly the story focuses on a bunch of people with hints of their backstories here and there so I'm sure their individual stories will be told in the succeeding books. Which is a good sign for a series because it only means that the overall plot is multi-layered and both emotionally and intellectually engaging. That's the best part about reading Romantic Suspense especially if the theme is procedural, just when you think you "got it", you really don't. 
ADDED BY AUTHOR: Dare's love interest in this book is NOT his half sister - I promise!
So I have to stop for a while when I read this little tidbit included in SURRENDER's Goodreads blurb. I mean I can get a little kinky and freaky with my reads but incest isn't one of them I promise on my mother's grave! Let me reassure you though that there isn't any romantic sibling love. Maybe STyler should rework her blurb but Dare's love interest is indeed another person. Her name is Grace and without giving away spoilers, let's say she belongs to the other team sort of. Honestly I didn't really care much about the budding romance between Dare and Grace, for some reason I didn't connect with them and their chemistry. One of the things that threw me off was Grace's psychic abilities which had me pondering if SURRENDER is a paranormal kind of thing.  Grace is a little on the weird side under the assumption that SURRENDER is a contemporary romance but I guess if you look at it in an otherworldly way, she's OK... but it's not as well defined as I hoped it to be hence the confusion.
She would remain unbreakable, although she was secretly broken inside, all taped together so the pieces wouldn't rattle and give her away - Avery
The start was real snappy with the prologue about Darius and his ill-fated mission fast forward to Dare having to rescue his half-sister which he knew nothing about. Then there's more revelations and unexpected meetings and alliances. Mid-way it slowed down a bit with everyone just speculating and trying to "play Chess" with Rip Powell. Towards the end it picked up, thank God!, and it was nothing short of heart stopping. The conflict-resolution was superbly done and I can't ask for more. STyler twisted and turned the story that had my head spinning. Towards the end I don't know anything, all my speculations about how SURRENDER will turn out has been thrown out the window and I just allowed myself to go with the tide. So book 1 might have speed bumps but the overall plot was very, very good. Plus the characters overall all great, gun-toting men flexing their lean bodies and the women as badass as their male counterparts. A little snark, lots of repressed feelings and the character combination is very promising and interesting.

So Supies, if you're into this kinds of books, I suggest you give STyler's Section 8 a gander, you might end up liking it... and it would also mean more books to add to your TBR which means another title to add to your buy list. It's a vicious cycle I know but if it's worth it, why not right?
Sometimes, maybe you have to lose everything to gain anything. - Grace

Purchase Surrender

New York Times Bestselling author Stephanie Tyler writes what she loves to read - romantic suspense novels starring military heroes and paranormal romance novels novels starring warrior heroes, all complete with happy endings. She also co-writes as Sydney Croft. She lives in New York with her husband, her kids and her crazy Weimaraner, Gus.

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  1. I absolutely love Stephanie Tyler! I had heard of this one, about the increase and all, I'm glad the focus isn't on the siblings as far as romance. But too bad about it showing down midway, at least the end made up for it, right? Great review Braine. I can't wait to get my hands on this :D

    1. This is my first STyler book and it's OK although I can see how it can be a great series. I love romantic suspense.

  2. The guys sound hot, and the plot sounds good overall. Kinda sad is slowed in the middle, but wanting the next in the vicious cycle seems to have made up for it.

    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

    1. They are, you should read books like these Brandi!


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