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BNTBTSBack cover blurb:

Natasha risks more than her life when she guards a defense attorney targeted by the Mafia.

Protection specialist Natasha Chamberlain thinks guarding a defense attorney from a disgruntled client should be a fairly normal job, but when she learns he’s been targeted by the mafia, she’s ready to call it quits. However, the attorney holds her to their contract and Natasha finds her own life placed in danger along with her bodyguard cohorts, Pit and Bigun. Natasha’s fiancé Jonce Striker is fit to be tied when he learns this, which only confirms to him that the bodyguard field is too dangerous for his love. After Natasha is shot trying to protect her client, Striker delivers the final ultimatum: leave the bodyguard field or lose him. Natasha makes her choice but will she live to regret it?

It’s no secret that I absolutely love this series.  I was hooked with the first book and my addiction only grows stronger with each one so instead of a review, I thought I’d share a few of the reasons why I like Ms. French’s Bodyguard series so much.

Number one—as Wilkie Collins said about cliffhanger endings, “Make ‘em cry, make ‘em laugh, make ‘em wait—exactly in that order.”  Ms. French does just that, sprinkling her books with touching moments, numerous laugh-out-loud scenes and then she ends them with a bit of a teaser that always leaves me wanting more and wondering what’s going to happen next.  The excellent writing and exciting plots are more than enough to keep me coming back, but that teasing hint of what’s coming in the next book hooks me every time.  In that respect, The Bodyguard and the Snitch doesn’t disappoint.  In fact, it just might be Ms. French’s best cliffhanger ending yet.  It seems Natasha…oh, wait, I don’t want to spoil it but you’ll know what I’m talking about when you read it.

Number two—the way the protagonist, Natasha, grows with each book, not only personally, but professionally too.   With each story, she’s a little bit more confident of herself, her job, and even though her personal relationship with Jonce Striker, the love of her life, doesn’t always run true, the reader knows through her actions and thoughts that’s she’s coming into her own there too.  Natasha is an independent young woman and though she makes mistakes, she’s determined to learn from them.  There are several places in this book where she catches herself doing something she doesn’t consider professional and makes herself stop, step back, and rethink the situation.  She doesn’t always win the battle but at least she tries.  This also happens in her relationship with Striker, both of which tell the reader the character is maturing as a professional and as a partner in love.  Ms. French obviously knows what she’s doing when it comes to developing her characters and I think she’s bringing Natasha along nicely, not rushing things, but letting her grow at a realistic pace. 

Number three—speaking of characterization, the secondary characters are fabulous.  Yes, the main characters are well-crafted, but I think Ms. French has an extraordinary talent when it comes to creating secondary characters.  Not only the ones who show up numerous times in the series, like Pit and Bigun—who I hope and pray will get their own book one day—or Stevie and Cameron—who are a delightful mishmash of trouble just waiting to happen—but Natasha’s clients in each of the books; a millionaire computer geek, a show dog, a rock star, and in this one, a defense attorney, are all characters that I’d like to see appear again in the series.  We get a little of that in this one with Roger, the computer geek, and Giki, the rock star, and I hope Ms. French continues to weave some of these fascinating secondary characters into later books.  Her characterization skills are wonderfully apt and quite multi-faceted and it often leads to some of the most humorous passages in the books.

Number four; the romantic relationship between Natasha and Striker.  I’ve always had a thing for star-crossed lovers, whether in books, movies, or TV shows; it is a plotline that I’m drawn to.  Romeo and Juliet, Othello and Desdemona, Sam and Diane, Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn in almost every movie they made together, David and Maddie, even Eve and Roarke in a few of J.D. Robb’s In Death series.  I love them all and Natasha and Striker can easily be included on that list.  It’s fun watching these two alpha-personalities clash and seeing the give and take between them as they struggle to keep their relationship from crashing and burning.

Number five; humor.  Ms. French has a sly sense of humor that often takes me by surprise which only makes her books more enjoyable.  It is, of course, evident in The Bodyguard and the Snitch and I ended this one with a smile on my face…and a gasp at what’s becoming Ms. French’s trademark teaser ending, which brings us full circle, right back to number one!

With The Bodyguard and the Snitch, Ms. French has written yet another outstanding book that now rests in its pre-destined spot on my keeper shelf.  As with every one of the books in this series, the plot is compelling, the characters and dialogue are original and believable, and the ending, well, let’s just say I’m hooked and can’t wait to find out what happens when Natasha needs a bodyguard of her own.  Can you guess who it’ll be?

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