A Review of Bounty of Love by Scotty Cade

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I give this a almost 4. I really liked this book and Scotty Cade’s writing while at the same time repeatedly hitting my forehead with the desk. I liked it but it gave me a headache.

First off, the beginning of the book had me in tears. Scotty Cade builds up this picture of a loving family. Zander Walsh, his parents and his groom to be are out at the rehearsal dinner before their wedding. The interaction between Zander and his folks plus a tender portrayal of Zander’s relationship with his fiance make the events that follow all that more devastating to the reader and Zander. As the wedding party reaches home, Zander’s parents and fiance are shot and killed. Zander is left for dead. All this is contained in the blurb for the book.

As Zander wakes up in the hospital and reality of his situation sinks in, you feel all his pain and confusion. Really well done. FBI Agent Jake Elliot is waiting in the room for Zander to recover enough to be able to talk about the attack. And here’s the problem for me. While I like Jake Elliot, the main character, I just could not swallow Jake Elliot the FBI Agent. Maybe if he had been made a rookie, but definitely not as a seasoned agent. Too weepy and not very confident in his abilities for someone who had wanted to go into law enforcement his entire life. A really nice guy but the portrayal of the FBI and its agents didn’t seem real.

Problem No 2: Washington, DC, Senate Bills and how it all works (or doesn’t depending upon your point of view). This books pivots upon the idea that introducing a certain bill into the Senate is dangerous because it is a given that the bill will pass. This is folly. I live in the Washington DC metro area where we live and breathe politics. This simply would not happen. A enormous amount of bills are introduced every year, the majority of which die a quick death. Between bipartisan politics, lobbyists and special interests, there are way too many hands in the pot for any bill, especially the one here, to pass both the House and the Senate. Sometimes I can suspend belief for somethings but this kept me just shaking my head and snorting. Unattractive but true.

So even though I liked the story (wonderful secondary characters as well) for every “atta boy well done” there was a “ohmygod he did not just go there”. I see the this book was a prequel for others in the series as it sets up how Zander and Jake met and ended up in Alaska. Since this means they leave the FBI and Washington politics behind (hopefully), I will definitely go on to read the rest of the series. As I said, I really like Zander and Jake. So I am wishing them well and happy in Alaska as I go off to get another book in the series.

Here is the Blurb from the Publisher:

The night before his wedding, Zander Walsh, his parents, and his husband-to-be are all shot when they return home and interrupt a mysterious robbery in progress. After three weeks in a coma, Zander wakes up to find out he is the only survivor, and his perfect life falls apart in an instant.

Hunky FBI Agent Jake Elliot is investigating the case, and he eventually apprehends the killer-who soon escapes. Following six months of searching, Zander and Jake realize they’re being stonewalled by the FBI… and that they have slowly formed an unbreakable bond that is beginning to turn into much more.

Once they embark on a journey to apprehend the killer for the second time, they’ll discover that one terrible night was much more than just an interrupted robbery. Can big business and politics cover up the truth, or will Zander and Jake’s quest to unravel the mystery be the end of their newfound love and their lives?