Welcome to the last stop on the Review Tour for Afterburn by Tara Chevrestt. Please leave a comment or question for Tara to let her know you stopped by.
By Tara Chevresst
Publisher: Whispers Publishing
Release Date: March 15, 2013
Genre: Contemporary/Interracial Romance
Length: 89 Pages
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Crystal is an enlisted mechanic with a tragic past. Grant is an officer and a pilot with a broken heart. When faced with a difficult decision, will Crystal choose wisely or lose the best thing that ever happened to her?
The love between them burns hot, but their relationship won't stay fueled if they can't beat the obstacles in their way. Besides breaking the fraternization rules, Grant and Crystal have the difference of race between them…but can they prove to the rest of the world, and to each other, that love is color blind?
Afterburn is about overcoming one's past, not judging others, learning to forgive, and what it's like to be a woman in a "man's world".
Buy Link: Amazon
"You called about a leak?" Crystal wasn't surprised to find Grant, looking immaculate in his flight uniform, leaning against the fuselage of his Falcon. She peered up at him from under her cap, trying to look coy, but knowing she failed miserably. She was still shaking from her encounter with Swenson. She heard her tools rattling in her tool bag.
The smile on Grant's face that had greeted her faded. "What's wrong?" He reached out a hand and touched her shoulder. His casual stance tensed, his body looking ready to battle any and all of her demons.
Crystal took a deep breath. "I'm okay. Just those problems at work I didn't want to talk about." She turned away from him, not wanting him to see the tears that filled her eyes. "Where's that leak? Which wing?" She dropped her bag onto the tarmac, lowered herself to her knees, and began removing fasteners of different sizes. "What size is it?" She kept her head down, avoiding his probing eyes.
"The only leak is in my heart. It doesn't need a fastener, only for you to smile." Grant's soft voice rolled over her as he crouched down beside her. The smell of his cologne tickled her nostrils, bringing to mind memories of their wonderful weekend together. His kindness was her undoing. Much to her embarrassment, she began to cry. Tears fell into her canvas bag, wetting the tools of her trade.
Grant was on his knees beside her now, and he kept a lookout as he put his arms around her and let her sob, offering her shelter and comfort. He made soothing sounds, held her tight, and waited.
Feeling safer and reeling from all her conflicting emotions, Crystal finally began to talk. In a tearful voice wracked by an occasional sob, she told Grant about that morning, about the declined promotions, about how she dreaded walking into her shop every day. It felt as though a leak was fixed in her own heart, no fastener or sealing required, just the love and strength of a caring man. If only all of her problems could be solved like this...
When she had told him everything, she sat back on her heels and waited, wary at the clouds of anger on Grant's face. He stared at her intently. "You need to go to EEO." He reached out and brushed a tear off of Crystal's face. "No one, no woman or man, is supposed to put up with discrimination or harassment over what they are. The military has a zero-tolerance policy. I've been there, Crystal, and I know you can fight it. We all deserve to be treated equally."
"I'm afraid," Crystal whispered. "Who will believe me?"
"I believe you." Footsteps sounded behind him, and Grant straightened and stood next to the jet wing, blocking Crystal's tear-stained face from view. She heard him quietly conversing with someone. When she saw the military boots walk away, she waited for Grant's face to appear below the jet again. He held out a hand to her.
"I have to do a practice CAP." He pulled her to her feet, grabbing her bag with his other hand.
She nodded, stood on shaky legs, and brushed off her coveralls. "Are you sure there isn't a leak I need to fix before you go? Combat Air Patrol maneuvers are no light thing. Was that really a fake call? Is your jet fueled?" Her words came out in a rush of nervousness. Her fiasco from the morning was forgotten in light of her sudden, new concern. She didn't want to watch him fly. Her feelings for him were growing too strong. A picture of her dad came to her mind. "I think I'll be going now. I can't watch you fly now that I...that I..." Her voice trailed off. She didn't dare say it. Didn't dare say the "L" word or that she cared for him deeply. It was too soon.
Grant placed his hands on her shoulders, preventing her from leaving. His voice was deep and serious. "Fake call. I just wanted to see you. Don't worry. I know what I'm doing." He gave her a reassuring squeeze. "With me at the controls and you as its mechanic, this jet will perform wonders in the sky. We make a good team—in more ways than one”
Tara Chevrestt is a deaf woman, former aviation mechanic, writer, and an editor. She is most passionate about planes, motorcycles, dogs, and above all, reading. That led to her love of writing. Between her writing and her editing, which allows her to be home with her little canine kids, she believes she has the greatest job in the world. She is very happily married.
Her theme is Strong is Sexy. She shares a website with her naughty pen name: http://tarachevrestt.weebly.com/index.html and they have a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tara-Chevrestt-Sonia-Hightower/218383211513877.
My ReviewA rapidly paced contemporary romance, Afterburn, by Tara Chevrestt tackles several topics while giving us a romance between two damaged souls. Likable characters, realistic dialogue and plenty of angst kept me turning the pages to discover what was going to happen next. Taking place at an unnamed military base, Ms. Chevrestt’s story also features air plane pilots and their mechanics.
Trying to live up to her father’s dreams, Crystal Morgan joined the Air Force when she graduated from high school. A mechanic assigned to repair jets; she’s smart, talented and has a real talent with her tools. Unfortunately she’s stuck with a sexually harassing boss and a repair crew happy to let her do all of the work. When a chance encounter with a pilot gives her a chance to have a life outside of the job, will she embrace the chance to have a romance with a man from a different race?A successful fighter pilot, Grant Masters hasn’t taken a chance on love in a long time. Burned once as a teen, he has one strict rule – no getting involved with white women. A chance encounter with his new flight mechanic has him rethinking his rule – maybe it’s time to take a chance on love with the amber eyed mechanic.While both Crystal and Grant have issues from their pasts, Crystal is the least bothered by the difference between their races. She’s more concerned about the danger Grant’s job as a pilot could bring to her heart. Ms. Chevrestt does a pretty good job developing Crystal’s character, though I’ll admit there were a few times I wanted to yell at her to stand up to her boss. Fortunately Grant was able to convince her she needed to take action.
While told mostly from Crystal’s point of view, we do learn what happened in Grant’s past which made him fearful of a relationship with a white woman. Crystal’s open and honest nature makes all of the difference. Their physical attraction doesn’t hurt either.Will Crystal and Grant’s relationship survive once it goes public? Will Crystal have the strength to do what’s necessary to stop her sexually harassing boss? You’ll have to read Afterburn to find out.My Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book as a part of a book tour in exchange for a fair and honest review. I did not receive any additional compensation for my opinion of the reading material provided.