Her Child to Protect by Delores Fossen

Posted May 3, 2021 by Marsha in 2021 New Release Challenge, Contemporary Romance, Harlequin, Harlequin Intrigue, Owned, Series, Small Town Romance / 0 Comments

Nothing can stop her

…from saving two lives.

When she arrives at a murder scene, Deputy Della Howell is not pleased to find her recent ex already on the job.

She’ll work the case with Sheriff Barrett Logan but will keep the secret she’s certain Barrett isn’t ready for—she’s pregnant with his child.

But as the dueling cops investigate, familiar sparks reignite between them…just as they fall prey to a very tenacious killer.

Titles in the Mercy Ridge Lawmen series include — Her Child to Protect – Safeguarding the Surrogate –

This is an adult 18+ story that contains language, possible violence, and sexual situations geared to an adult audience.

 

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Title:  Her Child to Protect
Series:  Mercy Ridge Lawmen #1
Author:  Delores Fossen
Genre:  Crime/Romantic Suspense
Publication Date:  April 27, 2021
Rating:  4.5 stars

Her Child to Protect begins the Mercy Ridge Lawmen series with a tense, intriguing romance with twists, turns, and suspects galore… in addition to an unexpected, unplanned pregnancy for two lovers who have gone their separate ways, or at least Della tried.

Barrett and Della are both law officers in bordering, very small rural towns.  They’d had a relationship that Della had called a stop to.  Barrett had no intentions of marrying or ever having children.  And while Della could survive without the first, she knew that she eventually wanted children and felt it was better for them both to simply cut the ties and get on with living her life, perhaps finding a man who could offer love, marriage, and children one day.  Until she discovered this fateful morning that she was indeed pregnant with Barrett’s child.  Talk about complications.  And the events that will shortly unfold won’t make this situation any easier for either of them.

Cold, untraceable texts were sent to Barrett and Della claiming a possible murder… but no positive proof or name.  The spot they were sent to was the exact border between the two small towns where each were police officers in those bordering towns – Barrett the Sheriff, Della a Deputy.  Another complication.  What they discover will set in motion an intense hunt for a killer, leading them down false trails with the goal, it seems, of implementing one particular person for this crime, Barrett’s estranged mother.  What follows neither could have predicted as twists and turns, lies, and traps are engaged to make this crime far more complicated than either expected.

Her Child to Protect drew me in from the start, and it is a roller coaster of a story full of danger, intrigue, assumptions, and two people who really did belong together even though one of them was far too stubborn and set in the past to see that fact.  I adored Barrett with his grumpy attitude.  I did.  I love nothing more in a story than watching a strong, stubborn man discover just how wrong he is about so many important aspects of his life.  There is sadness in Barrett’s past, yet when events happened he was only a child tasked with helping to raise his younger brothers.  There is anger, held tight to the chest and perhaps, justifiably so.  What was fascinating for me was seeing Barrett accept Della’s pregnancy, not denying it but slowly coming to accept and take part in the life of this child they’d created.  And while doing that, Barrett began to second guess his reactions to his mother.  Oh, there are no sudden hearts and flower moments for them, but there might be a softening as this case draws them all into extreme danger and odd choices.

There are vile villains, surprise suspects, danger, and puzzles to sort out in Her Child to Protect.  There is also a lovely romance between two stubborn people that is about to subtly change, with eyes opening, and hearts softening.  I liked Della so much, she’s made a choice that wounded her heart while trying to protect it at the same time.  This unexpected baby is not how she wanted children but she will love, protect, and cherish this child no matter what the future holds with Barrett.  Della is grace under fire, and I loved watching her try to protect her heart while holding out hope for what Barrett might do.  I’d thought I had figured out the actual bad guy… but by the story’s ending, I was sorta right and way off course.  I also love when a story can toss a surprise my way, one that makes absolute sense.  In all, I had a blast with this opening story in the Mercy Ridge Lawmen series from an author who is an auto-buy for me.  If you love a mystery to fit puzzle pieces into, a friends with benefits relationship that turns into more, and a complicated rural community with lots of surprises then you’ll want to pick this one up… right now.

I own a Kindle edition of Her Child to Protect.

Available in paperback or for your favorite e-reader, mine is the Kindle.

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