Hot SEAL, Labor Day
by Cynthia D’Alba
Some books just keep you consistently engaged the whole way through, and “Hot SEAL, Labor Day” is one of them. Beautifully written by Cynthia D’Alba, this is part of the ‘SEALs in Paradise’ world of interconnected stories created by a variety of authors. I’ve enjoyed all the books in the series that I’ve read, but this is definitely one of my favorites.
Sawyer’s nickname is Nomad because he’s always on the move, filling in where needed on various SEAL teams. He grew up as an army brat, so never being in one place for long is a way of life that he’s comfortable living. The team he’s been serving with for the past month or so is granted a 10 day leave and Sawyer heads to a lake where he is supposed to spend the week of the Labor Day holiday visiting with his parents. His parents have to cancel but Sawyer goes anyway. Ana’s successful career as a world-renowned concert pianist involves a lot of traveling so she’s also always on the road. When she’s not on stage she’s practicing, every aspect of her life planned and dictated by her mother and by her manager. It’s been that way since she was a young child prodigy. When the unbearable pressure finally gets to a boiling point, she desperately needs to take a break. Without telling anyone what she’s doing, she runs off to take a vacation from her life.
Ana and Sawyer end up in side-by-side cabins at a lake in the California hills. I don’t want to tell you too much about the relationship that develops between them but it’s simply terrific. Their connection feels authentic, the dialogue and banter are first-rate, and the author successfully conveys the respect and chemistry between the lead characters. There’s a special quality to the interactions between Sawyer and Ana that’s just so hard to explain in a brief review.
The secondary characters have small roles, but I particularly liked Ana’s father. There is some angst, and a couple of heart-wrenching moments. You’ll probably laugh out loud a few times. I thought the ending was particularly effective. Much of the time while reading about when Ana and Sawyer are together you may find yourself wearing a happy little smile. I know I did!