holding fire is the second book in the alpha security series, but it's really not necessary to read the first book in the series to understand what is happening in this one. trey hansen hooks up with elle monroe when he meets her in a bar in thailand. the morning after he wants more time with her, but she wants to run. she's not interested in a relationship, she's leaving thailand anyway.
when all hell breaks loose elle and trey get separated and she manages to give him the slip. that's when trey learns that the woman he slept with is the very woman he has been hired to protect. tracking her down to new york, he meets up with her again, only she's not that happy to see him.
it turns out that elle's estranged father, a u.s. senator running for re-election, was the one who hired the protective detail. when he demands she attend a gala, in spite of the danger to her, trey is furious. he's even more furious when he realizes that elle intends to be escorted by another member of her protective detail. he does not let elle win that battle. during the gala elle is once again targeted and trey takes her into custody, removing her from the party and taking her with him to the alpha security compound, hidden in the mountains of virginia. once they finally have some time to themselves, without being trapped by gunfire or mysterious abductors, trey and elle decide to try having a casual relationship.
the thing is that trey is sick of casual. he's been there, done that. he wants something real. and he thinks that he and elle have a shot at it. but elle is hiding something big from him. she had a serious car accident that resulted in damage to her ovaries and means that it is likely she'd never be able to have children. she knows that the future that trey envisions for himself includes kids, his mother and sister both make a point of telling her he's bought a big house with extra rooms. and she wants to fill those extra rooms with kids, but she can't and she doesn't want to deny trey the chance to have the big family that he's always dreamed of. never mind that there are other ways to have children: ivf, surrogacy, adoption, are all possibilities here, but the characters never consider this.
but since this is ultimately a problem that is solved without the characters needing to consider all the alternate scenarios and have an adult discussion about it, i suppose we needn't dwell on it either. things between trey and elle can't remain casual, because they are so head over heels for each other. once they start communicating, they figure it out. luckily they manage to do this while figuring out the group targeting elle. i can only imagine the next book in this series tackles charlie and vin's story, and honestly i can't wait. i'd like to see more of the alpha security team.
**holding fire will publish on march 28, 2017. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/grand central publishing (forever) in exchange for my honest review.