Fire, Duty, and Fierce Love

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Mildly spoiler-y review.

Consumed is the best title for this book, as it utterly consumed me and made me join the Bad Choices Book Club when I stayed up to the wee hours finishing it in one sitting.

The first chapters hit the ground running hard, as main character Anne Ashburn loses more than just her chance at being one of the best fire-fighters on her team when she is caught in a burning warehouse fire minutes.

Danny Maguire, Anne's teammate and also the man she just spent a wildly wicked night with is the one who gets here out. Both he and Anne have terrible health repercussions from this rescue, both physical and mental, and they both cannot fathom seeing each other again.

The book jumps to nine-months after, and we find Anne starting her new gig as an arson investigator, a far cry from her past life. She has a new boss to deal with, and a new pet that she finds during her first investigation. She's also living with her new reality of having a prosthetic hand, something she's accepted as part of her.

Danny himself is struggling with the psychological fallout from his brush with death and being the one responsible for freeing Anne from the fire by cutting off her hand. He's still working on the ladder, but he's drinking too much and spiraling.

When some of their mutual friends and an arson case bring Anne and Danny back into proximity, the old fire between them ignites anew, but can either of them forgive, forget, and fight for a future together?

So incredibly addicting and hot, PLUS well-researched and totally immersive world building. I loved that Anne was strong, comfortable in her body including when she loses her hand, and isn't willing to compromise her sense of duty. She's not made to be likeable, but is perfectly Anne. I also loved Ward's handling of Danny's mental health issues. Danny isn't healed from sexy times with Anne and he does see a therapist (huzzah!). Representation matters, and this was good to see.

While still very white, JR Ward's new series is one you won't want to miss.