Review by Sharonica
Member of the Paranormal Romance Review Team
Dog Tagged by James Brock might be deemed an “insta-love,” but for us old-fashioned folks it is more of a “love at first sight,” kind of thing. Believe it or not there is a difference, especially in romance novels.
In most insta-love it is two sided with lots of fluff, sexy-stuff, and fairy dust…right? Well, in love at first sight, just like in real life, it can be unrequited. Or, can simply remain a love from afar from both parties, due to outside influence or circumstance. Very Shakespearean, but he was the master of writing romance (IMHO).
In James Brock’s story, Drill Sergeant Clay Norris finds himself attracted beyond distraction to one of his recruits, stunning young private, Chevrolet Banks (talk about all-American). DI Norris knows to have these thoughts over the recruit are not only detrimental to his career if anyone were to find out, they seem to wreak havoc on his mind and emotions. Even though “Don’t ask/ Don’t tell,” is in effect this is still the military, and just because you can’t be arrested for such conduct, doesn’t mean it is accepted.
The Story is told from Clay Norris’ POV, and the reader gets a personal tour of Clay’s years in the military. Some years better than others, as he works his way through the ranks, and even does tours in Iraq, where after a couple years, he runs into Chevy Banks once more.
It is in the never ending sea of sand that Clay and Chevy finally have their moment, and both confess to feelings from so long ago. These beautiful people do as many before them have when surrounded by the ugliness of war and death… they take solace in each other’s embrace and dream of a different life.
The story includes tragedy, but it is a story of hope, love, and the power of the human spirit. Even when life knocks a person down, no matter how tragic, as long as that person has breath, that person has hope.
The characters were multi-faceted and I was right there with Clay on his journey. Good pacing and world building. There were some spelling issues, but not enough to detract from the story.
I enjoyed the story in all its broken beauty.