Friday, July 24, 2015

Following Doctor's Orders - Caro Carson (HSE #2424 - Aug 2015)

Series: Texas Rescue (Book 3)


As an emergency room physician, Dr. Brooke Brown keeps her eyes on the prize: saving her patients. Flashing ambulance lights and grievous wounds are her bread and butter, not sexy men like firefighter Zach Bishop. But as one unexpected night with Zach blossoms into something more, Brooke fears that her past tragedy might stand in the way of happily-ever-after.

After his so-called "soul mate" stomped on his heart, Zach hasn't sought out real romance. But Brooke sets him on fire like no other. He's just beginning to open his mind -- and heart -- when his ex shows up with a little girl she claims is his. Zach knows that motherhood isn't on Brooke's mind…but maybe he, and a three-foot-six-inch little girl, can convince her to change it?

Very good book full of emotion with a dash of humor. Brooke is an ER doctor who is very good at her job. She is known for keeping her cool under the most stressful of situations. Something that threatens that calm is Zach Bishop, firefighter and flirt. He has all the nurses falling at his feet, but he seems intent on getting to her.

Zach is drawn to Brooke and makes a point of coming up with flirty one liners just for her. Brooke does her best to ignore him, until he does something that she feels she has to speak to him about. At that point, he gets a reaction from her that makes his day, and he asks her out. Surprising herself, Brooke actually agrees.

Zach had had his heart broken a few years earlier, so he avoids any kind of serious relationships. Brooke also avoids relationships, concentrating on her work. The loss of her four year old sister when Brooke was a child, and her mother's over the top grief, has made Brooke an expert at controlling her emotions. I ached for Brooke and the way her calmness is how she deals with the potential tragedies she sees every day, and how they remind her of how fragile life is.

Their scheduled date comes on an evening when both have had rough days. Zach is looking for some of Brooke's coolness to ground him, to stop his day replaying in his mind. Meanwhile, Brooke really needs Zach's lightheartedness to take her mind off the last emergency she'd had to deal with. Instead, they find themselves taking comfort from each other in the most physical of ways. Together they find a perfect balance and the more they are together the better it is. I loved seeing how sensitive each one was to the other's moods. Zach's support of Brooke on the anniversary of her sister's death went a long way toward helping Brooke deal with her mother's excessive grief. Brooke still has issues with worrying about Zach's safety, but he works hard to show her that he isn't at as much risk as she thinks. Their feelings for each other are growing stronger when Zach gets a surprise that could derail it all.

His ex-girlfriend shows up with a four year old girl she says is his. Through a bit of trickery, she runs off and leaves the little girl with Zach, who is afraid of doing the wrong thing. He's always been comfortable around kids, but none of those have been his. Brooke does her best to show him that he has nothing to fear, but she's having issues of her own. Little Zoe is the same age that her sister was at the time of her death. Brooke doesn't want history to repeat itself and her reactions start to put a strain on her relationship with Zach. But when danger comes, it isn't Zach who is at risk, and Brooke has to face her deepest fears. The ending was really intense and my heart was pounding until it was all over. I loved seeing her finally accept the truth of Zach's feelings.

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