Erryn reviews ‘Gunnar’s Guardian (Protect and Serve Book 1) by Pandora Pine. The audiobook, narrated by John Solo was released November 16, 2020, and is 6 hrs and 56 mins. The ebook was published May 7, 2020, 246 pages. A complimentary copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.
Why I read this: I’ve enjoyed Pandora Pine books before.
Aside from being a cop, Kennedy is used to living a quiet life. But when a new neighbor moves in next door, his peaceful days are at an end.
Gunnar pushes all Kennedy’s buttons. He’s rude, cocky, and overconfident. He’s also sexy, and Kennedy can’t deny the attraction that simmers between them.
He helps Gunnar find a job at the local firehouse, where Gunnar seems to fit in well. As they grow closer, tragedy strikes. Will Kennedy be able to save the man who’s become his whole life?
Gunnar’s Guardian is the first book in the Protect and Serve Series and features a hot cop and his annoying neighbor, hot firefighters, and an arsonist on the loose.
I know Pandora Pine for her paranormal romances and kept expecting a psychic or a ghost to appear. I needn’t have – this is just a straight up romance. And one I enjoyed.
Kennedy is a cop who’s good at his job but doesn’t do relationships. He tried that once and despite the warnings from his brothers, he persisted. And the guy wound up breaking is heart. No more long-term relationships for him. And I will take a moment to mention his four brothers – these men may not be bound by blood, but they are as close as brothers can be and each of the adopted men’s stories involves a degree of heart break. But they found a home and all the love they could ever ask for.
When Kennedy comes home one day and finds some kid moving in next door, he’s disgruntled. He’s rude, the kid is rude back and it’s the beginning of a wonderful relationship.
Gunnar was recently turfed from his parents’ home for being gay. He was evicted with just the clothes on his back. Eventually his mother snuck him in and he was able to retrieve some clothes, but that’s it. A friend is renting him this townhouse and his mother gave him her secret stash of cash, but even Gunnar realizes the money is going to run out soon. When he almost sets his house on fire during his first attempt at cooking, Kennedy realizes he has to step in. And so does the rest of his clan. Suddenly Gunnar isn’t so alone in the world.
But Kennedy’s not willing to let Gunnar fall any farther. He sets tasks for the young man, and also sets high expectations. Gunnar wants to pass those challenges. Despite his previous laissez faire attitude, he’s now on a path to self-acceptance. Kennedy knows the age difference is significant, and he doesn’t want to stand in Gunnar’s way. But he might get a little jealous when Gunnar meets other great men.
There’s also an arsonist on the loose and that is always just lurking in the background. That part of the story isn’t resolved but the love story is, so although satisfied, I also want more.
Finally I will mention that there is a horrific act of violence in the story that caught me off guard. Appropriate. but still jarring.
John Solo narrated this story and I thought he did a great job. I hope the rest of the series will come to audio and that he’ll narrate those as well.
9.5/10 Pots of Gold (95% Recommended) – Compares to 4.75/5 Stars
Sick of the slogging rat-race of her 9-5 job, Pandora Pine put pen to paper (literally!) to make her ambition of becoming a romance novelist a reality. She cut her teeth in the dog-eat-dog world of fanfiction, still dreaming of the day when she would be a published author. She lives in Massachusetts with her blabbermouth muse who’ s a fan of middle of the night plot twists.
In her spare time, Pandora fancies herself an amateur nature photographer. She enjoys mucking around in swamps, hiking through the woods and crawling around on her hands and knees in her backyard seeking out the perfect shot. Pandora is a fan of roadside seafood shacks and always thinks Mexican food is a good idea at the time.
Some of Pandora’s favorite things are chocolate, writing longhand with purple pens and handsome men falling in love with each other.
Don’t miss Pandora’s seductive new novel coming soon to an e-reader near you.