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Hostile Ground

TITLE: Hostile Ground

AUTHOR: L.A. Witt, Aleksandr Voinov
PUBLISHER: Riptide Publishing
YEAR: May 2014
LENGTH: 300 pages
GENRE: M/M Romantic Suspense
HEAT LEVEL: Adults only, Erotic
RATING: 4 out of 5

REVIEW: I’ve read a handful of Witt and Voinov’s books, both those written individually and together, and there hasn’t been one I didn’t like. As a reviewer, I have the opportunity to select which titles I’ll read for review, so maybe I’m just good at predicting what authors I’ll like. Whatever the reason, most of the titles I’ve read since signing up to write reviews professionally rather than just for my own pleasure have turned out to be great finds for me. I’ve chosen to read authors who are new to me, and that’s how these two writers came to my attention.

Witt and Voinov are a great team. Their stories are always engaging, and their characters tend to be the sort who stick around in your thoughts even after turning the last page. In Hostile Ground, Mahir/Saeed is an undercover cop who, in the course of his investigation, meets the enigmatic Ridley. As his boss, Ridley holds the key to a successful sting for Mahir, and their undeniable physical attraction makes it all too easy for Mahir to stay close to Ridley – and his secrets.

This could have been just another enemies-turned-lovers trope, but Witt and Voinov make this commonly used device their own, adding enough fresh elements to make the story feel new and innovative. And, as usual, the sex is smoking hot. Ridley has an intense, dominant nature that brings out a submissive streak in Mahir that he’s never before experienced. He’s always considered himself a top who bottoms occasionally just for grins.

Any further commentary on their relationship will give away too much of the fun, I’m afraid, so I’ll leave it at that. The secondary character of Kinza, Mahir’s nephew, was fun, if a bit predictable. As the mother of a teenage son, I compliment the writers on their ability to bring to life the amazing ability of teenagers to be totally selfish and scatterbrained one moment, and completely together and responsible the next.

To help you decide whether this is the book for you, I will say that I enjoy the Market garden series, another collaboration by these writers, and L.A. Witt’s Static. If you liked any of these, you’ll probably like Hostile Ground, though it is a good bit grittier than the Market Garden books. If you’ve never read any of their books, but enjoy steamy stories about undercover cops who find love in unexpected places, I can’t think of a single reason you wouldn’t love this book.