Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Review - - Tempt the Flames

Tempt the Flames
By Marnee Blake
The Smokejumpers - Book One
Publisher: Lyrical Liaison / Penguin Random House
Release Date: September 11, 2018
Reviewed by PJ

Meg Buchanan is determined to prove she didn't get the trainer job in Redmond, Oregon's rookie smokejumper class because of her family's long history as firefighters - - or out of pity. But if teaching one of her own brothers isn't challenge enough, she's shocked to see Lance Roberts in the new class of recruits. Once her brother's best friend, and her first, unrequited crush, he's also the son of the man responsible for her dad's death. 

Lance is stunned to realize that this confident redhead is the stubborn girl he once dreamed about. There's no way he can fall for her now. He needs to focus all his attention on his training - - and uncover the truth behind the long-ago fire that killed both their fathers. But as the undeniable heat between them threatens to ignite, someone attempts to put an end to Lance's amateur sleuthing - - and his life...

I fell in love with Marnee Blake's writing while reading her debut trilogy. While New Adult is not my usual cup of tea, Blake's suspense-filled, action-packed, NA paranormal series kept me on the edge of my seat, eagerly turning pages until I finished each riveting story. When she announced her new series - contemporary, romantic suspense stories set within a community of smokejumpers in the Pacific Northwest - I didn't even have to think before jumping onboard. I am happy to report that this first book, Tempt the Flames, is a satisfying page-turner that has me eagerly anticipating the books to come. 

Ten years ago, one fateful mistake resulted in the deaths of both Meg's and Lance's fathers, best friends and fellow smokejumpers. The accident was blamed on Lance's father and, in an instant, life was changed for both families. Sympathy and compassion were heaped upon the Buchanans by the residents of their small town while Lance and his mother were treated with suspicion and animosity. They eventually left Redmond, moving to California and Lance, burdened with guilt and anguish over his father's actions, cut ties with his best friend, Hunter Buchanan and the girl he had always secretly liked but could never have, Hunter's younger sister, Meg. 

Over the past ten years, Lance has made a name for himself in California firefighting and now he's returned to Redmond to fulfill his dream of becoming a smokejumper. But small town memories are long and so are those within the smokejumping community. Will he be given a fair chance? Will people judge him on his own merits or will he forever be tainted by his father's actions? And how far will they go to stop him if they discover why he's really there?

Contrary to what Lance believes, his family wasn't the only one adversely affected by the events of that tragic day ten years earlier. Blake does a great job of showing the fractures and dysfunction that have grown within Meg's family as well. Everyone who was impacted by that day still struggles with it's fallout, including Meg and Lance. Will their deepening relationship bring the forgiveness and healing they, and their broken families, desperately need or be the final straw that rips them apart forever?

Tempt the Flames pulled me into Blake's high-risk world of smokejumping and into the minds, hearts, hopes, and fears of her characters. I'm intrigued by several of these characters and can't wait to find out which of them will be putting his heart on the line next. 

If you enjoy contemporary romantic suspense with plenty of emotion, sizzle, action, and a mystery with enough twists and turns to keep me guessing through most of the book, I encourage you to give Tempt the Flames by Marnee Blake a try.  


  1. The hero sounds delicious and tragic--like Maverick from TOP GUN. :) Of course I want to read about him!

  2. Thanks for this review....with the recent history in the western part of the US - a very apt story.

  3. I'm ready to pick this book up and read. It sounds like it is action packed.

  4. Sounds like something I'd enjoy <3

  5. A new to me author but sounds intriguing. Thanks for the review PJ.