cover image Dream Maker

Dream Maker

Kristen Ashley. Forever, $7.99 mass market (544p) ISBN 978-1-5387-3386-8

The excellent first romance in Ashley’s Dream Team series features the alpha heroes and high-octane suspense her fans expect but balances the testosterone and adrenaline with moments of cozy domesticity. Mechanical genius Evie Gardiner is taking the long route to an engineering degree and works two jobs (providing tech support during the day and stripping at night) in Denver, Colo., so she can continue to bail out her irresponsible family whenever they get into trouble. Evie agrees to a blind date with Daniel “Mag” Magnussen, a former U.S. Marine, and is instantly flustered by his good looks and charm, but their date is interrupted when Evie’s brother, Mick, needs her help. When Mick’s shady dealings make Evie a target for Denver’s most dangerous criminals, Mag commits to keeping her safe. While the subsequent action sequences—including kidnappings and shoot-outs—drive the story, Mag and Evie also spend a lot of time at home, cooking, kissing, and making plans for when their lives calm down. Familiar faces from Ashley’s Rock Chick series will please long-standing fans, and new readers will quickly grasp the established dynamics. Those who like a dash of sweetness in their suspense will be delighted. (June)