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Where are all these crazy random thoughts coming from? My mind isn’t usually this disordered. Right now it feels more turbulent than the open sea we’re about to venture into. My stomach lurches at the thought. I wonder if maybe I should have taken an extra motion sickness pill just in case the prescribed amount isn’t enough for me. Stop. Get your head together. This too handsome man is wreaking havoc on my equilibrium. I nearly laugh out loud at the stupidity of that ridiculous thought. What equilibrium? I’ve already demonstrated my shit sense of balance to everyone on this boat and soon they’ll know I’m mentally unbalanced as well.
“I believe we’re all here now,” says Libby. She disappears into the cabin to start taking a head count and ends the counting by touching me on the head. “Thirteen’s the lot. Very good.”
Thirteen swimmers on the boat and I’ve just been dubbed the unlucky thirteenth. I try to discard thoughts of bad luck colored by images of sinking boats and muscle cramps. Normally, I’m slightly superstitious. But now I’m feeling downright neurotic. I’m completely annoyed with my predicament. I was as stable as any other person until the shit with my job hit the fan and I flew to Greece. Now, I’ve seen one hot guy, been given a random unlucky number and suddenly have the thought processes of a crazy lunatic.
Forget unlucky thirteen. Now he’s walking toward me. I clear my throat and cough. Damn. My mouth feels dry, but my water bottle is in the bottom of my bag. I won’t allow my mouth to fall open as I watch his large, tanned feet take several athletic steps until he’s standing right in front of me. Okay, so here we are. I’ll utter one or two stupid things right away so I can get the worst of the embarrassment over with right off the bat.
What I really need right now is a shot of tequila.
My Greek SEAL
by Sabrina Devonshire
GENRE: Military romance
After a sudden job lay off, Maya holes up in her apartment, drinking wine and eating ice cream until the day she’s slated to leave for Greece. Even though she’s lost enthusiasm for this Greek island swimming vacation, she’s paid for the trip so she boards the plane.
She figures her life can’t possibly get any worse. She’s unemployed and spent most of her savings hiring a lawyer to collect commissions her corrupt boss refused to pay. She stumbles down to the Lefkada Island dock the first morning jetlagged and grumpy. When she spots a Greek man with a drool-worthy body, her plan is to look casual. Instead, she trips and plunges straight into the water. It wouldn’t be so bad if she never had to see him again. But Eros, a former Hellenic Navy SEAL, is one of her swimming tour companions. He boards the boat, pokes fun at her American mannerisms and asks way too many irritating questions. And he’s so damn hot, he makes her feel confused and distracted all the time. To make matters worse, he’s assigned to be one of her swimming partners.
Maybe Maya could have ignored the simmering attraction between them if it weren’t for the earthquake, the tidal wave and being stranded alone with him on Kalamos Island.
3*** Good entertainment
I’m an avid reader of romance novels and short-stories as well as an author of erotic romance so I know what to expect from romantic reads. My Greek SEAL is a good example of this genre.
It took me a little while to connect with Maya though. She annoyed me a bit in the beginning until I realized I’d have been obsessing about my lack-of-job status if I were in her shoes so I cut her some slack and then was actually able to relate to her. I guess the turning point for me was her first swim. It was quite emblematic of my problems connecting with her. When she starts racing Eros and making a timing exercise into a race, I could have kicked Maya. However, the way she uses swimming to take her mind off her problems, and even help her plan a course of action, is exactly what I do when I go jogging. So I finally conceded I had more in common with Maya than I was willing to admit. LOL
Eros is such an intelligent, swoon-worthy, and charming leading man. I fell for him from the get-go. His cross-cultural comments were to the point and I related immediately as I’m usually aware of such issues and often reflect on them. I agree with him that travelling abroad – be it on a vacation or for longer periods – helps people understand each other better, recognize their differences, and try to tolerate such diverse opinions. Quoting Eros, “how can anyone feel compassion for people they don’t understand?” In my opinion, when we hide in a bubble, we can’t see the world and the people around us, which makes it hard to tolerate them.
Finding social and even political remarks in a romance book pleasantly surprised me. In this aspect, My Greek SEAL was quite refreshing. The author also did a good job with the supporting characters. I loved ALL Maryann’s scenes. She sounded so British LOL and was such a sweetheart. Being a swimmer herself, I think it made sense for the author to spend time in the swimming scenes. Plus, her descriptions are detailed enough that you feel like you’re there with the swimmers enjoying the splendors of the Greek waters.
At this point, you must be asking yourself why I rated the book 3 stars if I seem to have liked it so much, right? Well, I’ll answer that while trying not to give away spoilers. For me, the story lost a star after the first two sex scenes. Don’t get me wrong – they’re steamy hot as I like them, but it felt odd reading them as flashbacks in this book’s context. It’s written in first person from Maya’s POV using present tense; however, those two scenes are described after they happened instead of while the couple was going at it. Except for those small glitches, I was enjoying the book very much and rating it solid 4 stars up until the tidal wave. I’m not giving any spoilers as it’s mentioned in the blurb. That happens around 80% into the book and it bummed me out a bit. Still, I’d have kept the 4 stars rating, even though they’d have been less shining, if it weren’t for something that happened around 90% into the story during a TV interview involving Maya and another American. I don’t want to say too much here except that it felt improbable, and, in my opinion, unnecessary. But it marred my enjoyment of the ending, which was a pity. However, I’d like to point out here that my issues with whatever happened towards the end of the book are totally my own. Tastes are quite personal so I’m sure many readers wouldn’t agree with me.
Finally, I know some readers complain when people fall head-over-hills in love after a brief time but I don’t hold that against Maya and Eros. Under their circumstances it sounded plausible.
I recommend My Greek SEAL for those who prefer their romance on the hot side while admiring breathtaking views of exotic places.
** I read this book with my Kindle Unlimited subscription**
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AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Sabrina Devonshire, an avid swimmer most of her life, can usually be found near or immersed in a body of water. If she’s not seeking an endorphin rush in a pool, lake or ocean, she’s often encouraging people to work out or writing a romantic suspense or magazine article.
She received a John Woods Scholarship and an Arizona Commission of the Arts Professional Development Grant toward her participation in a 2007 Prague Summer Program writing workshop. She has a B.S. from Clemson University and an M.S. from the University of Arizona.
Sabrina loves traveling to off-the-beaten-path places where phones and electronic devices tend not to work well. Peru, Nicaragua and Belize are some of her favorites. Sabrina lives in southern Arizona with her husband, two children, and fluffy dog, Sugar.