Book Review: In For The Kill (McCloud & Friends #11) by Shannon McKenna
*** This review is SPOILER-FREE! Read on with confidence! ***
In for the Kill opens with all the addicting mystique of a spy thriller and rolls right into the story like a freight train on a bender. Ballsy, take-no-shit ladies and in your face, brutally honest men duel through the dialogue, cleverly filling in series backstory without being obvious or leaving confusing gaps. These people clearly have a payload of exciting (maybe ‘traumatic’ is a better word) history together, from woo-woo new “special powers” to jewelry literally designed to kill. We’re not in Kansas anymore Toto: Here there be danger, and I dare say I like it!
“And you think you deserve my full attention, Sam?”
“Yeah,” he said baldly. “And you deserve mine. My full, undivided attention, all over every inch of your body, for a prolonged period of uninterrupted time.”
Ms. McKenna paints each dialogue, every suspenseful interlude and nerve-wracking action sequence as a vivid stroke on a canvas primed with glittering privilege and unfathomable cruelty. Her characters boldy demand attention as they wade neck-deep into the nasty business of human trafficking and slavery, on a mission to protect one woman who has already been forced to sacrifice too much.
“I’m actually a civilized guy , under normal circumstances,” he said. “But you’re not normal circumstances. Rude stuff just falls out of my mouth with you. I’d apologize, if my basic socialization skills were functioning, but they’re not. Filter failure.”
Oh, Samuel Petrie! I adored Sam’s lovable stubbornness; one of the other characters refers to him as a pit bull and it is a fitting comparison. All he wants is Svetlana Ardova, and he will protect her at any cost, even from herself. Even from him. Sveti matches Sam’s stubborn streak and brings an intensity of focus that is both frustrating and admirable. She is willing to sacrifice everything, including Sam’s and her own happiness, for the greater good. When these two get together, it’s all fireworks and fighting, in just about equal measure. Their sex scenes are intensely passionate (with lots of dirty talk!) and explore the gamut of personal expression, from power exchanges to soul-baring, brutal honesty.
“In your service,” he repeated. “I like how that sounds, Sveti.”
Her body tensed. The words sounded formal, antique, and archaic. Something from an epic poem, or a fairy tale. “I’m sorry,” she said . “About , uh, saying . . . my service. I didn’t mean—”
“I did ,” he said . “It’s okay. I like it.”
“But I . . . but you . . .” Her voice trailed off.
Sam seized her wet hand, gazing intently into her eyes. “Your service,” he repeated softly. “That’s exactly where I want to be.”
This book is part racy sexscapades through the rich Italian countryside, part brutal no-holds-barred adventure, and all heart-pounding, addicting love story between a man and woman who want nothing more than each other and are willing to fight everything in their way (sometimes even themselves) to get there. Coming in to the series as a first time reader on this final book meant I had a lot of characters and history to catch up on, but I didn’t feel overwhelmed or confused for the most part. It absolutely whet my appetite for more of this colorful clan and their histories. Time to start at the beginning of Shannon McKenna’s McCloud series!
“I think you’re fucking awesome, and I need to be close to that. Wherever you are, whatever way I can. I’m not fussy.”
I think you’re fucking awesome too, Sam, and I loved reading the McCloud & Friends series happy ending!
If you liked…
If you liked In For The Kill, you may also like Striking Distance by Pamela Clare. Book #6 in the I-Team series, chosen as the GraveTells 2013 Book of the Year, Striking Distance is a beautiful tapestry of love, war, danger, psychological trauma, and terrorism, framed by a powerful love story. It is gritty and real and relevant, and just may change the way you see Navy SEALS and the conflicts going on in the Middle East. Read our review of Striking Distance here! This book also has a prequel (to explain their romantic connection through the dramatic sequences of Striking Distance). Check out First Strike here!
You may also enjoy Joan Swan’s Phoenix Rising series, starting with Fever. Wrongly imprisoned for murder, Teague abducts his pretty nurse as a hostage during his escape and plunges his entire team of ex-firefighters, all of whom have suffered injustly at the hands of a nameless enemy since their life-changing accident, into an epic struggle for life and reaffirmation. The Phoenix Rising series has paranormal elements and characters you connect with immediately, and has won several GraveTells awards over the years. Find out more about Fever, the book that started it all, in our review here!
Start reading In For The Kill now! You can find it on Amazon here.
In For The Kill is…