Friday, December 3, 2021

Review & Giveaway: An Unexpected Distraction by Catherine Bybee


Dream Keeper (Richter #3) by Catherine Bybee
Publication Date: November 30th 2021 by Montlake Romance
Pages: 347
Source: Publicist

My Thoughts:
Jax, one of the operatives of Mac Bain Security, travels back home after her brother’s panicked phone call. He won’t say much, but Jax quickly discovers all is not right with her parents and they’re headed for divorce.  It soon becomes apparent that the divorce and the reason they sent Jax to the military boarding school, Richter, are intertwined. With rumors swirling that Richter may be going back to their nefarious ways, training the students to be deadly agents/assassins, the whole team gets involved with Jax’s investigation into her family’s past.

After a fun action packed start the story shifted and was very much focused on Jax and her family relationships, and the budding romance between her and Andrew. The trouble between Jax’s parents brings her relationship with them into focus and at first, I was really miffed at them. They shipped Jax off to a boarding school and didn’t really take an interest in her. The reasons behind that were revealed. I was pleased with changes between Jax and her mother. Her father was another story.

As more information is uncovered it’s decided a team must travel to Richter and see if they can ferret out information and see if the school is tuning back to their old ways. Jax and Andrew have the perfect cover: a couple in love. Not hard to pass off when the two are really falling for each other. Even though their relationship is new, it’s the kind you just know is right. Their time in Germany was playful, passionate, and steamy! I just loved it!

I’ve enjoyed all three books of the Richter series, a spinoff to Catherine Bybee’s First Wives series, mainly the last book, Say It Again. I think in a pinch you could read An Unexpected Distraction as a standalone, but you’d miss out on the previous romances and the history of Richter and how it played a part in this close-knit group of operatives. All three books are available through Kindle Unlimited as “read and listen for free” if you belong to that program.

An Unexpected Distraction was easy to get into and hard to put down! I stayed up late to finish as all hell was breaking loose and I had to see how it all turned out! While Jax and Andrew’s story wraps up, the ending made it imperative we get more! I look forward to the next one!

4 Stars

Book Description:

Family secrets and fresh romance collide in this heart-pounding Richter series installment by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bybee.

Jacqueline “Jax” Simon knows how to expose secrets: she’s a skilled operative with MacBain Security and Solutions. When Jax hears her parents are divorcing, she races to London to find out why. She’s determined to learn the truth, especially when her investigation uncovers why her parents sent her to Richter, the German military school that made her a fighter.

Andrew Craig collects Jax at Heathrow Airport as a favor. He’s heard she’s a handful, but he didn’t know she’s dangerously gorgeous too. His instant attraction could change his life…or end it.

Jax doesn’t want to fall for Andrew, but soon he’s worming his way into her life. Together, they infiltrate Richter to discover if it has returned to its covert purpose: training children to be spies and assassins and blackmailing parents to look the other way. As the attraction between the two intensifies, so do the secrets exploding all around them. How deadly are those secrets—and who will survive?

About the Author:
Catherine is a #1 Wall Street Journal, Amazon, and Indie Reader bestselling author. In addition, her books have also graced The New York Times and USA Today bestsellers lists. In total she has written thirty-six beloved books that have collectively sold more than 10 million copies and have been translated into more than twenty languages. Raised in Washington State, Bybee moved to Southern California in the hope of becoming a movie star. After growing bored with waiting tables, she returned to school and became a registered nurse, spending most of her career in urban emergency rooms. She now writes full time and has penned the Not Quite series, The Weekday Brides series, the Most Likely To series, and the First Wives series. Learn more about Catherine and her books at

A Paperback ARC Copy of An Expected Distraction by Catherine Bybee was provided and I'm giving it away to one lucky reader! The giveaway is open to US Residents only. Fill out the rafflecopter for a chance to win. Good luck!

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  1. Terrific review, it sounds like a very exciting book!

  2. This sounds like a great series. Being a spin off, where is the best place to start?

    1. I think a good place is starting with Say It Again from the First Wives series and then read the Richter series in order. But this is romantic suspense, heavy on the romance part, so I wonder if you'd like it? I wonder if you'd like Karin Slaughter more? She does great thriller/mysteries with a bit of romance on the side. They're pretty gritty, though. If I were going to try her out for the first time I'd start with the first book of the Will Trent series or one of her standalones, like False Witness or The Good Daughter. I would absolutely love to hear what you thought of either one.

  3. I've been on a Rosie Walsh marathon and looking for another list of books to get into! Your rating of 4 stars is pretty promising. This looks like a series I need!

    1. I've never read Rosie Walsh but I did recently acquire one to read in the beginning of next year: The Love of My Life and it sounds really good! Hope you like this series if you decide to pick it up!

  4. Thanks for the tip they are in KU with audio. That's definitely a good option for me. Fabulous review Rachel!

    Anne - Books of My Heart

    1. Yes, that's a big attraction to me as well when considering a book. Thank you, Anne!

  5. great review and it does sound good, though i have not read any of her work.
    sherry @ fundinmental

  6. I like when a series has a story arc that is finished in that installment, as well as an overarching story arc. Bybee does that a lot in her series.

  7. I've never even heard of this author but this doesn't sound too bad! Maybe I should give it a go.