Title: A Prince Among Men
Author: Cat Johnson
Published in October 2008 by Linden Bay Romances
Genre: Contemporary Military Romance
"I first introduced readers to the sexy military men of Task Force Zeta in 2006 in Trilogy No. 103: Red Hot & Blue. As the series has continued and expanded over the years the response from readers, reviewers, and troops alike is humbling. I am more than humbled, because it is not me but instead the lives being led by those in harm’s way that give my books life. I hope my novels stand as testament to their sacrifices, one small tribute to them, a minute attempt to share their tale with those who might normally not be privy to it. It is not much in way of recompense. I can only hope it is enough."
Sergeant Ryan Pettit was tired, damp, weary of all the rain, and in general fed up with his nice mud hut. It was par for the course in Afghanistan, and it was also something he didn't ever think he could really get used to in truth. Long hours were the norm in a battlefield, and the one thing keeping him going was his ability to communicate with the outside world. Now, coming off the 24 hour Sergeant of the Guard duty, it was a chance for him to rest, but that was not in the cards. Too full of caffeine, Ryan was a bundle of nervous energy, and in order to work some of it off, he decided to write in his blog. It was one thing he tried to do as often as possible, but too often it was grossly neglected. As he flipped open his laptop, he was only too aware that he actually had privacy in the hut he shared with his squad leader, Staff Sergeant David “Hawk" Hawkins. Privacy was at a premium, but the men did the best they could with what they had to give each other the precious moments to write home, chat with friends when possible, or just recount what events of the day they were able with family over the internet and in emails. The men of his team had gone back to rack out in their barracks, and Ryan was left to wind down on his own.
Catching up on his blog was certainly a good thing. Ryan looked forward to reading the different messages and comments left by the readers that subscribed to his military blog. He looked forward to the messages, comments, and the other notes left for him online because it made him feel connected, and it helped make the time bearable when faced with the uncertainty of war. It was also his chance to let the people interested, outside the military, know about the conditions, the actions, the routine of the days and when there were events he could talk about that disrupted their days. He was especially anxious to see what the one woman, Vicki V had to say. He was always interested in what she had to say, whether or not she liked what he wrote, and anything else she had on her mind. They flirted and teased each other shamelessly online, and it felt as if he really knew her well. Ryan knew they clicked together, and wondered if it would be so if they met in the future. As it turned out, it was good he logged in rather than hit the rack because that is when the roof fell in…Literally. It was going to be a long day digging out the equipment and possessions buried in the Operations Center and the attached barracks. It would be a while till Ryan was back to finish his post, and it could be a harbinger of things to come…
Vicki Vanover was waiting for a press conference to start, and again it was late. It was almost as if people didn’t think the press had things to do, deadlines to meet, other people to talk to and places to go that were just as important as the press conference. When all was late, however, not all was lost because she could and did use her time as effectively as possible. She had technology on her side, and in this case, it was a shiny new satellite capable cell and a check on her newest pastime, her favourite military blogs, one in particular. Groundpounder’s blog was always interesting, the man had a knack for the written word, and it showed. Here was a soldier who could keep you riveted with his accounts of daily life in the field in Afghanistan. He said volumes without giving up any military secrets, or putting other’s lives on the line. The prose was quick, punchy, and Vicki always left a comment, a joke, or a comeback to him when he posted. Even as she tried to pass off this attraction to a man she’d never met, she knew it was more than that inside. When she read his posts, she felt a tingle she only felt when she read an especially good article in the NY Times or other such august paper.
This was the last press conference she needed to attend before starting her new assignment. It had been a tough sell, but she was heading to Kandahar to do an article on Women’s Rights In Post Taliban Afghanistan, and she was hoping to at least get a bit of a view on their plight outside the cities, in the more rural areas, to see if the changes had gotten that far, or if there was more work to be done. She had a plan, she had back-up in the number of an Australian friend who had contacts there, and thus armed, she set off to see what she could see. Being stuck on the base, however, was definitely not on her “To Do” list, and when the handsome soldier sat at her table in one of the base’s fast food joints, she had to take a chance. She was not exactly sure at what she found in the man who introduced himself as Hawk, and when she got what she wanted through blackmail and bribery of an intimate kind, she felt out of her league. What she didn’t expect was a soldier to whom she had an instant attraction, with whom she had a quick rapport, and one she felt uncannily close to and became worried about when things started to go so very wrong…
Cat Johnson has taken us into the realms of the military, and into the heart of Task Force Zeta with her Trilogy 103: Red Hot and Blue. Now, in A Prince Among Men, she takes on the tale of a love between two unlikely souls who may never meet, then have all their dreams fulfilled – to a point. Ryan Pettit writes for himself, to please himself, and to tell others of the way he feels and the things that happen around him in Afghanistan. He wasn’t necessarily expecting it, but he developed a small following, and one in particular intrigued him a lot. Vicki V is a dream, she commented on the story he told, the way he told it, brought out the best in him, and he was hoping that some way, some how he would maybe get to meet her after he was out of this mess of a war. Things happen during war, times and people change, but Ryan had dreams of a career, and although he had a friend in Germany, he wasn’t certain if it was serious. Vicki has no one serious, and is not necessarily looking, but finds an attraction to the soldier who as taken her under his wing. Just before Vicki got to the base camp, Ryan found out his German girlfriend wasn’t his anymore when he got his proverbial “Dear John” letter. But the Fates were being kind to him, because they brought a very special something in Vicki. She’s another and a better gift in exchange for what was lost, and when Ryan realized what he has in hand, he is not about to let her go.
For Vicki and Ryan, things can’t go too smoothly. A Prince Among Men puts the pair in an unusual set of circumstances, and makes them examine their positions on life, love, and commitment very carefully. The press conference Vicki attended before her trip to the war zone was about the desires of the British Royal Family trying to keep their young soldier Prince safe. But when a lucky farmer happens to try his hand at kidnapping and theft, and nabs the prince, his attaché, Ryan, and Ryan’s squad instead, all stops are pulled, especially when Vicki ID’s the Prince to Hawk, putting the whole base on alert as to the nature of the disappearance, and giving Vicki some very scary moments. Now she has to decide if what she has discovered between her and her soldier is real, and if so, can she let go of her blogging soldier in the face of a new love? Only Cat Johnson can take you into the depts. This way, and show the human side of love in the military, and all its inherent quirks and foibles. A Prince Among Men is a tale you won’t want to miss, and so I suggest you get on over to linden Bay Romances now to get your copy today. And while you are there, be certain to look for other of Cat’s wonderful romances between her military men and their respective ladies.
Yours in good reading,