Trace of Fever

Trace of Fever - Lori Foster Trace Rivers played a small roll in When You Dare, the first novel in Lori Foster's Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor series. We knew Trace as the focused, rather aloof tough guy who was the confidant and colleague of Dare Macintosh. Trace proves to be a complex character, tough and focused, yes, but he also has an innate sense of responsibility to protect innocents from criminals involved in human trafficking. Trace has a very personal stake in obliterating every last trafficker he finds as his sister was taken and ultimately rescued by Dare.

Trace is now working deep undercover having infiltrated the inner circle of Murray Coburn, a cruel, narcissistic sociopath who has built a lucrative business from kidnapping and selling women. As far as Murray is concerned women are chattel and Trace’s hatred and disgust toward the man is palpable, however as a trained professional he is able to maintain a detached facade working as the creep's ‘bodyguard’.

Trace has slowly earned Murray’s trust and is getting close to learning his key contacts when Priss Patterson presents herself as his illegitimate daughter, which adds a significant complication to the mission. Trace now must protect Priss from the evil that is Murray Coburn and his psychotic, masochistic lover Helene ‘Hel’ Schumer. Hel is one scary woman who gets her jollies from drugging and torturing Murray’s victims. Yes, they are quite a duo! *shiver*

Priss presents herself as a naïve, modest girl who following the death of her mother wants to connect with her father. Trace sees through Priss’s facade immediately and is determined to find out what she is up to. He is however inexorably drawn to her beauty, and sassy sarcastic wit. The other thing about Priss is that she lies like a champion! Priss is an extremely private person and while it’s evident she has had a hard life the specifics are not revealed until much later in the story. It wasn’t only the well crafted, riveting plot that kept me engaged in Trace Of Fever, I had to know what Priss’s secrets were and why she was after Murray Coburn. Her background is startling as well as sad. Priss does have this amazing cat, and damn, now I want one just like him! lol

Ms. Foster gives more insight into the workings of Trace and Dare’s operation and how they have built powerful connections enabling them to work as mercenaries with anonymity. As well, she introduces their partner Jackson Savor, who like Trace and Dare is a highly trained warrior and is uber cool, extremely hot, and, he is a sniper. I loved this guy, he has a dry sarcastic wit that had me laughing out loud on a number of occasions. As well Jackson has the hots for Trace's sister which makes for some very interesting dialogue between the two men. lol

Trace tries extremely hard to resist Priss, however the sexual tension builds over the course of the story until he finally succumbs to the need to be with her. Priss is a virgin but not for the usual reasons that we so often read in romances. While she may be sexually inexperienced, she certainly isn’t naïve and you will have to read the book to discover why. I felt the hero and heroine of this novel were both written as having very sensual auras which made the build up to the love scene all the more intense and sexy. Neither Trace nor Priss trust easily and both are forced to lie because they feel they must, it makes for a tumultuous relationship and does cause some frustrations, especially where Trace is concerned. Priss is a headstrong young woman.

I found Trace Of Fever to be a fast paced, suspenseful read with plenty of danger,action and an unusual romance. Trace is another extraordinarily strong and intense alpha hero, but he is also kind and devoted to those he loves. IMHO Ms. Foster's characterization of the secondary characters in Trace Of Fever was stellar. In addition, the antagonists in this story were such immoral, lethal lunatics it was a relief when they get what's coming to them. The conclusion of Trace Of Fever is an action packed nail bitter with a plot twist that I didn't see coming.

Trace Of Fever deals with a very serious subject but it isn’t all danger and suspense, there are a number of laugh out loud scenes that I thought were well placed in a narrative that does reveal the dark underbelly of a criminal organization. I’m continuing to thoroughly enjoy Ms. Foster’s series and am really looking forward to reading Savor the Danger, Jackson’s story and book III of the series.

4.5 / 5 stars