Review: Hidden Away by Maya Banks

Format: E-book
Read with: Amazon Kindle
Length: Novel
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: A KGI Novel, Book 3
Publisher: Berkeley
Hero: Garrett Kelly
Heroine: Sarah Daniels
Sensuality: 3
Date of Publication: March 1, 2011
Started On: March 1, 2011
Finished On: March 2, 2011

It feels like it has been forever since I picked up my first KGI novel, The Darkest Hour which shot Maya Banks right into the top of my favorite romantic suspense authors list. The second novel that came out entitled No Place to Run was equally intense as it was emotional and since then I have been on tenterhooks waiting for the release day of Hidden Away which features the story of the broody and hot as sin Garrett Kelly.

My fascination for anything to do with Garrett started with the 1st book itself where he and his brother Ethan’s wife Rachel share a very close bond with each other. Though Garrett tends to growl and snarl at the rest of them coming off as the grouchiest and most anti-social brother in the family, it is the complete transformation that he undergoes whenever Rachel is around and needing him that made his character such an intriguing one. And Sam’s story just made Garrett seem more appealing because Garrett at first dislikes Sophie so much but nevertheless ends up taking a bullet for the woman his brother loves.

Garrett is the second eldest of the 5 Kelly brothers though his worrisome nature and overprotective tendencies makes him seem older than the rest of the brothers. Garrett too had served as his country as a soldier until six years back a mission which he led his group on had gone horribly wrong killing two of his team mates requiring his brothers to pick up the pieces. What Garrett would like more than anything else is to take his own sweet revenge on the man who double-crossed his team on that fateful mission, the chance to do so which comes unexpectedly through their CIA contact requiring Garrett to fly all the way to the small island of Isle de Bijoux where his mission awaits him.

Sarah Daniels is a woman who is on the run to protect the only man who has ever given a damn about her and tried to serve as her protector and savior in the only way he had deemed as fit. A year back, Sarah’s life had taken a horrible turn which had rendered her helpless and fearful of every man she encounters afterwards and it is with this fear still lurking in the depths of her soul that she runs to seek refuge in the serenity of the white sandy beaches and the deep blue sea that surrounds Isle de Bijoux.

When Garrett gets up close and personal with his mission, it takes only a couple of seconds for him to realize that there is so much more than that meets the eye where Sarah is concerned. The helpless fear that he sees in Sarah’s eyes makes Garrett’s blood boil and invokes the urge to do harm to whoever had inflicted such wounds on Sarah. Whilst the growing feelings of possessiveness and protectiveness about Sarah befuddle him, that doesn’t stop Garrett from doing what he does best; engulf the woman he loves in his protective warmth which is just damn near enough to make any woman sigh and flutter over the whole thing.

With unknown enemies on Sarah’s trail, Garrett’s job is a double hard one and it certainly doesn’t make things easier for him when he has to lie to the one woman who he wants unwavering trust and faith from. Once again, the whole of Kelly family makes an appearance together with the other team members who make this series so very appealing. Though the incidents of the heart thumping variety did not happen as much as it did in the 2nd book, Hidden Away too serves up on all the aspects which makes the book 3 of the KGI series a decent addition to an already 5-star rated series.

Couple of things I loved that I want to mention in my review. First of all, yes you ladies guessed it right, who wouldn’t love that drool-inducing cover featuring the hot as sin Garrett Kelly? I love the covers of each and every KGI novel that has come out and this one’s no exception to that rule.

Revisiting the characters from the Kelly bunch as well the rest of the characters that makes this series a kick-ass one is always a plus point in my opinion. It is heartwarming to see Ethan and Rachel making their way and their marriage growing stronger day by day whilst Sophie and Sam have a cute new addition to their family making things just perfect for this story. And let me not forget Rusty who I think is going to end up being my favorite character, if Maya Banks ever gets round to telling her story.

And needless to say, I loved both Sarah and Garrett and found Sarah’s courage and loyalty humbling which earned her my admiration in spades. Though the author does not go into details of her gruesome encounter, the fear and total humiliation that she must have gone through is  totally understood which made my heart just bleed for her.

But with all those things that I did love, I did find myself a bit disappointed with how Garrett’s character turned out in the end. I was expecting a bit more brooding and tortured hotness from him which ALWAYS has me predictably swooning into a puddle right next to my Kindle. And based on how Garrett is perceived by the rest of his family, I wanted some of that to come out in his own book which failed to appear and instead his soft and overprotective side which I love nevertheless took the center stage. Though for someone else that might not be a peeve, I found myself feeling just a teeny weeny bit letdown because of that.

All in all, an enjoyable addition to the KGI series, and I can’t wait to find out who gets their story told next from the delectable group of characters that Maya has created in this wonderful series. If you haven’t already read the KGI series, do start from book 1 because you need to experience the Kelly bunch right from the very beginning to fully appreciate each and every character as they unfold and grow with every story.

Favorite Quotes:

She started to open her mouth, but to her shock, Garrett sealed his lips over hers..
It was electric, a jolt to her system that fried her entire nerve system. He curved his hand around her nape and dug his fingers into her hair as he held her in place. His mouth moved sensuously over hers, gentle, but so demanding that her knees shook under the power of his touch.

Reviewer’s note: After pondering much about the story and why this just didn’t come down as a highly satisfying read for me, I have brought down its rating from 4 to 3.5 stars because Garrett and Sarah just didn’t get enough time of their own in the story to make this one a magical reading experience. There were times I wished that the book would pick up pace because that’s what I have been accustomed to throughout the series. And Garrett’s character ended up being the total opposite of what he started out being from the start of the series which has made me re-think and then re-rate the book.

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes&Noble | BooksOnBoard

Rating from the sunny side of life: ★★★½☆ 


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