Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Book Review: Countdown to Zero Hour (Black Ops: Automatik #1) by Nico Rosso

Ex–Special Forces agent Artem "Art" Diaz is tattooed, muscular and undeniably dangerous. He's also deep undercover, posing as mob muscle for a deadly bratva boss. His mission: gain the Russians' trust. Then lead the strike team that will kill them all.

Chef Hayley Baskov knows better than to get involved with someone with such close mafia ties, but the handsome bodyguard who brought her to this cold, sprawling estate full of ruthless mobsters is inexplicably kind. A little flirtation may keep her safe amidst the growing menace.

As Art’s timetable for action escalates, so do his encounters with Hayley. Stealing what illicit pleasure they can keeps them both sane in the face of evil. But when things get dangerous, Art has to tell her about his assignment, bringing her deeper into the shadowy world of black ops...and putting her life on the line.

Now Art has a new objective: protect Hayley from the man they both call boss.


I'm beginning to wonder why I haven't enjoyed the past two male-written romantic suspense novels. Is this a trend? Is it just a coincidence? I don't know. Ugh. I hate doing reviews like this ... the ones where I just didn't get the book but it's all about honesty, right? Let's get down to business, I guess.

The book started off okay, I enjoyed the characters and the beginning scenes of the book but I soon found myself about 20% into the novel and I still felt like I didn't really GET the characters, you know? I didn't have any ties to them, I wasn't emotionally invested, I didn't understand why the characters were the way that they were, I didn't understand motivations or anything else, really. And unfortunately, I felt this way throughout the entire novel. The words were there in the end, explaining things but nothing seemed to connect to the characters. They weren't brought to life for me and they seemed to just fall flat.

Fast forward to about halfway through Countdown to Zero Hour. At this point in a book, I should know what in the hell is going on. But this didn't happen for me either. It felt like the surface was just being scratched as to what is going on in the storyline. It read as if I was missing some vital piece of information and I was never clued in on the big secret. The characters weren't the only thing to fall flat for me ... the story did as well. This one is a hard one to review because the author really explains (mostly) everything and in the end, you're fully aware of what is going on but at the same time, it felt passionless ... it felt dead inside. There was no umph or pizzazz intermixed in these pages. I won't say it was boring because there was a lot of drama but it was boring-adjacent. By the end of the book, I really just would have been okay not reading it because there was so much of a disconnect between the story and me. Unfortunate.

Also ... there is a lot of damn Russian. I have no problem with Russian. What I DO have a problem with is so many damn Russian words that aren't explained. The majority of the time, the author never tells you what a particular word means and to be honest, I don't have time to go through and look shit up every 5 seconds. It slows the book down and ruins the entire reading experience. 

All in all, not a book for me. I'll probably pass on another one by this author in the future. Interesting premise though, too bad that it didn't work out for me.

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 22nd, 2016

No comments:

Post a Comment