Hadn’t I always known we hurtled toward this?
That at some point the bill would come due, and eventually he’d go up in the air and
the sky wouldn’t give him back."
Jesus H. I have the worst book hangover...
I have loved this group of fighter pilots from the start. Burn was the level headed guy, Thor the silent and deep water, Easy the...well...easy going one, a big kid with a quick smile and little depth. Well no, we KNEW that he had layers upon layers about him...
Dani's life took a tragic turn when her husband lost orientation, crashing down to earth while sitting in a fighter jet. She has been trying hard to find a semblance of normalcy but the void in her heart and house is overwhelming at the best of times. The most simple tasks have become a Herculean effort:
“Do you want matte or gloss?” I blinked, the paint cans blurring before me. What type of paint did you use to erase a broken dream? No fucking clue.
Through it all there has been one constant: Alex "Easy" Rogers. He has been her rock, a friend she can count on whenever she feels the ground slip away under her feet.
Easy has been in love with Dani since the first time he laid eyes on her, his reputation as a player a distraction from his love for her. Being his squadron leader's wife he never acted on his feelings, the bro-code of honor he lives by has always been too important to him. The guilt that comes with his friend's death smothers him and he would do anything to help Dani through the worst time of her life.
I would have given everything I had to trade places with him, so he could have come back for her.
For the hours Dani spends with Easy she gets relief from the soul deep grief she feels. At the same time there is guilt because she doesn't want to forget her husband, but Alex awakes feelings in her she hasn't felt in a long time. When they escalate they have to face consequences they didn't see coming.
“Don’t you get it by now? There is no one else. There never will be anyone else. There’s just her.”
I fell in love with Easy in the first book of the series and he has been holding a soft spot in my heart ever since. If there is a perfect man out there who is anything like him, raise your hand and tell me where you are. I want to call DIBS. That guy? Utter perfection. He is EVERY-FUCKING-THING. Understanding, tender, loving, funny, loyal, generous, strong, and has so many layers upon layers upon layers that you would have to spend a lifetime with this guy and still would not find the end of his larger than life personality. He is simply everything a woman can want from a man. My heart shattered for him, every time his was crushed yet again by the love of his life. Yet this woman brought out the best man he could be.
I loved her, and loving someone was more about them than you, so it didn’t matter what I wanted.
His unrequited but irrevocable love for Dani was the reason that made me love him so hard. The reputation he had as a player, his silent suffering, his quick smiles despite it, it all added to his appeal.
Dani was such a wonderfully broken heroine. It was hard to watch her pick up her life and start from scratch. Her guilt over wanting to move on is so misguided yet understandable, she loved her husband deeply. Even with Easy's help it is everything but easy. She is confused and afraid and has had her soul stripped to the essence of it - first by the death of her husband and then by Easy. Dani always tries to do the right thing. She knows what she has in Alex, loves him just as much and once her feelings started to change I could hear an imaginary faint "halleluja" from all people involved, including Joker. I felt relief when the angst eased and was genuinely happy for these two.
"I’ve loved you in so many ways— my friend, my family, my lover."
The insane sexual chemistry between these two was magnificent. It was in every word, every sigh, it was so intimate that I almost felt like a stalker looking in.
This was a worthy conclusion of this series and I think Chanel Cleeton has outdone herself. There was lots of angst, lots of tears and a huuuuge amount of love. Each and everyone of the books in this series is a favorite of mine, honest to God, but Easy is hands down one of my all-time favorite heroes. I mourn the fact that Chanel Cleeton is done with this series. I truly hope that she will return to the fighter pilots one day and write more of them. There is something about this group of men that is irresistible. Until then I'll just read whatever she throws at me because, honestly, this author has talent in spades.
“Are you ready to go home?” she asked when she was right in front of me, and I nodded, my throat and heart suddenly so fucking full. She might not have realized it, but I’d been home ever since I’d stepped off that ladder and taken her into my arms. She was my home.