Book Review: Dirty Deeds (Dirty Angels #2) by Karina Halle

21 Feb 2015

 “He’s fearless and ruthless. Soulless.”

As a flight attendant, Alana Bernal has had her share of suitors. She's also had more than her fair share of tragedy within her messed-up family. But what she hasn't had is love. Real, rip-your-heart-out, tear-your-clothes-off, all-consuming love.

At least that was the case until she met an American tourist, Derek Conway, a ripped ex-soldier with steely eyes and a commanding presence.

What started as a chance encounter between the two in Puerto Vallarta, a weekend full of hot sex and mindless passion, has led to something more.

Something deadly.

Because Derek isn't the type of man to fall in love. He's not a man who sticks around.
And he's definitely not in Mexico on vacation.

Derek is a mercenary, a killer-for-hire, a man who does the ugly jobs for the highest bidder.

Unfortunately for Alana and Derek, the highest bidder has the power to destroy whatever worlds they have created for themselves.

The highest bidder can destroy everything.

This is a romantic suspense book, #2 in the Dirty Angels trilogy but can be read as a standalone novel*




Dirty Deeds, book two in the Dirty Angels series, involves Alana and Derek. Alana is infamous drug-lord Javier Bernal's sister. Derek is a hired assassin, a mercenary. He's American veteran but living in Mexico, dealing with deep seated issues related to wartime in Afghanistan. What started out as a simple vacation in Mexico has evolved into years of violence and murder on his part. Whoever pays the highest price, he will work for...he will kill for.

 Alana is a flight attendant and one of two living siblings left of Javier's. She's lived a life full of violence at the hands of her drug cartel family. She's forever lived in fear and is chronically plagued by nightmares related to the murders of her parents and sisters. Because of this, her relationship with her brother is very estranged. Her only other sibling lives in the US. She's single and has supportive friends but that's just about it... Until she meets Derek. 

 When Derek meets Alana, she's the first woman in years to make him want to be a better do the right thing by her. In a botched murder attempt on Alana, Derek finds himself from assassin to protector. She stirs something primal within him. Maybe he can be saving Alana Bernal, the woman who clearly has a mark on her head. 

 I'm all for the anti-hero role suddenly morphing into a hero role but it has to be a gradual thing. This flip of the switch, suddenly 'I'm all about doing the right thing' transposition makes it difficult for me to really connect with the character. Is he good or is he bad? 

 The relationship between Derek and Alana grew at a believable pace yet I was still constantly questioning what makes a man put his life on the line for a woman he barely knows...a man that's an assassin. Because of this constant question in the back of my mind, I just didn't connect to their love story the way I could have. He basically sets eyes on her and he's a changed man...for her. 

 Dirty Deeds starts out a bit slow but quickly ramps up into full suspense with a nice dose of drug cartel darkness. The last third of the book saved my rating, quite honestly. I found myself looking here there and everywhere for snippets related to the cold and elusive Javier. I loved his book...his character and can't wait to get more from him. Derek was an anti-hero, he just wasn't quite as believable an antihero as I'd like! 

 This book can be read as a standalone but I'd highly recommend reading book one, Dirty Angels first. Just to get the basics of the drug cartel family. Alana has cameos in book one also. This book comes to a great conclusion with a fantastic epilogue but there's a lot more story to tell in their future... 

 Looking forward to the next book because...wait for it...we get more Javier!

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