Review 51: Fighting the Fire

I was lucky enough to be given an ARC of the latest installment in Laura Kaye’s Warrior Fight Club series. The WFC is a group of retired military personnel, who get together to practice their martial arts skills and support each other as they deal with the emotional aftermath of their service and learn to thrive in the civilian world again.

Fighting the Fire is the story of Daniela and Sean, who are secondary characters earlier in the series. Like all the of the primary characters in this series, they are both suffering from PTSD and not handling it well. I love Laura Kaye’s books, but my biggest disappointment in this series has been how she handled the HEAs and their mental health. They’ve been a bit too “just meet your match and everything will be magically better” for my taste. I do recognize that these are fiction, not handbooks or counselling sessions, and nobody wants their fiction to include detailed descriptions of the daily fight for mental balance, but… I’d be thrilled if the epilogues included our heroes making time to talk to a professional. I don’t need to see a session, just a casual mention that they are doing it.

Leaving that aside though, these books live up to my expectations for Laura’s work. Sean and Daniela are robust, complex characters who learn how much they have in common after a traffic accident leaves Sean in need of Daniela’s nursing support. Close proximity forces them beyond their adversarial relationship and shows them how good they are together both in and out of bed. As I expect from Laura, the sex scenes are hot – given that the mechanics of sex are pretty straightforward, I especially appreciate how her couples all vary in terms of their desires and skills. Those of you who prefer “fade to black” may want to skip the steamy scenes here, as there is some mild domination and kink.

Those of you who follow Laura on social media will know that this book was delayed several times due to health, computer mishap, pandemic, and who knows what else. It began to feel like we’d never get it! But having flipped to the first page and then read straight through in one session, I feel like it was worth the wait.