In From the Cold, by J.T. Rogers
Series: Castoffs, Book #1
Publisher: DSP Publications
Release Date: October 4th, 2016
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
A Robert Flynn Novel
Robert Flynn abandoned a sterling military career when his best friend and fellow soldier, Wesley Pike, died under his command. More than a decade later, Flynn’s quiet life is disturbed by the troubles of a fledgling CIA and Alexander Grant, a flashy agent with a lot to prove. As the space race between the United States and the Soviets heats up and the body count rises, the two men fight to find common ground. Grant knows Flynn believes in the cause, but all Flynn sees is the opportunity to fail someone like he failed Wes. An attack by a Soviet agent spurs Flynn to action and a reluctant association with the agency, and tilts Flynn’s world on its axis with a shocking discovery: Wesley Pike may be alive and operating as a Soviet assassin.
With Grant to bankroll the operation, his superiors looking the other way, and Flynn’s hard-earned peace officially forfeit, Flynn reunites his old team with the singular goal of finding Wes. But they get more than they bargained for—Wes is amnesiac and dangerous, brainwashed into becoming the perfect weapon. Flynn struggles to reach his friend, lead his team, and navigate his charged relationship with Grant—something neither of them expected and aren’t sure how to parse—while coming to grips with his long-buried feelings for Wes.
Spy (Cold War)
Friends to Lovers
In the Closet
This is going to be a short review in comparison to how long the book is. However, I cannot write about a lot of what happened because it is a spy type novel, and I don’t want to unpack the whole book and spoil everything for you. I’m going to keep it short and sweet, and you’re just going to have to trust me that this book is super good.
Don’t read this book if you want a straight-to-the-romance kind of book. This is a spy novel first and foremost, and a romance secondly. However, I say if you are on the fence give it a try, because it was a really well written book. Also I may be a bit biased in liking it because it parallels certain things in the Captain America: Winter Soldier movie, which I really loved.
I love books that are novels first and romances second, so I was really happy when I was reading this. The writing was also really really excellent; the whole cold war thing could have easily unraveled into stereotypes and a poorly developed plot, but since the writing was on-point it made it very captivating. It was a long, and often dense, book but I was able to read it fairly quickly once things got going.
The plot shifts between Wes and Flynn so we can see how amnesiac Wes starts to rebuild his memories and how he perceives Flynn. Flynn’s POV involves a lot of interaction with the rest of the guys sent to capture Wes and Grant, but Wes’s stuff is more introspective. This helps fills a lot of holes that would have otherwise been there at the end of the book, particularly the things that pertain to their potential romance. There are some flashbacks but Rogers does a good job of making them relevant to the plot and weaves them in very well so they don’t distract from the plot. They also show their relationship before Wes had amnesia which also furthers the plot.
There’s a lot of build up in the book and then everything hits the fan and the book gets super exciting and everything’s getting shot at. I have to admit I was curious how they were going to go deal with the whole feelings-for-Wes thing, but they managed to squeak it in at the end.
The loss of a star is because the entire book was focused on the Flynn/Grant romance and then the Wes thing got wrapped up too quickly (trying so hard not to spoil you guys omg). I wish there had been more buildup, but it didn’t make the ending bad. I am just being picky, but if the second book in the series builds on it a bit more then it has the potential to bump this one back up to five stars depending on what happens.
J.T. Rogers grew up wanting to be either a superhero or a spy—but rather than pick one over the other, she chose to become a writer instead so she could be both in her spare time. Her fiction reflects her childhood obsessions, blending together the distrustful, cloak-and-dagger world of spies with the high-octane action and camaraderie of her favorite superheroes.
To find out more about Rogers and her books check out her website https://jtrogers.wordpress.com/
You can purchase In From the Cold from:
Barnes & Noble
I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.