Iris (Mike Bravo Ops #1) by Eden Finley

Release Date: January 20th

Eden Finley sure knows what she’s doing when it comes to creating the best MM romance protagonists. It’s like she has a recipe that, without fail, turns out the perfect cake. Or, in this case, lovable MCs and a steam-banter ratio to die for.

Synopsis: Iris, ex military and now working for a private security company – Mike Bravo, is an adrenaline junkie of the highest order. He’s always ready for action and he loves it. An extraction mission results in Iris and his team saving the life of a blast from Iris’ past. Saint, Iris frenemy from basic training, always the perfect soldier, best at everything, and completely insufferable. But when Saint is discharged from the military and hired on by Mike Bravo, Iris soon learns that the image he had of Saint might not be entirely correct. For one thing, Saint sure as heck isn’t straight.

It’s not exactly enemies-to-lovers, although I guess that’s the trope that comes the closest. I’d say it’s more of a rivals-to-lovers story. Because really, Iris is too laid back and easy-going to ever have a proper enemy.

I liked Iris already from his Famous appearances, and I was psyched to read his book. And truly, he was everything I hoped for and more. Iris might possibly even be my new favourite Finley book boyfriend. I mean, he’s super cocky and competitive, giving the illusion of never being serious and maybe lack in depth. But he had the most soft and squishy center! The way he was all macho-bragging during training but showed such consideration and care in the bedroom was hot as all get out.

Saint on the other hand, had a lot of healing to do. But if a doctor could have prescribed something for him, it would have been Iris. Saint was vulnerable and lonely, not to mention insecure in his role at Mike Bravo. It might not appear as an obvious pairing considering Iris’ external swagger, but that was the thing that made them even more delicious together. Iris’ softer side and his intuitive understanding of Saint’s needs was just swoon-worthy.

So, why wasn’t this a 5-star to me?

The writing, the humour, the banter between Iris and Saint, the steam and the eventual romance was all on point. But the story setting and plot didn’t really work for me. This isn’t meant to be a serious read. There are tough situations and heavy topics in this story, but at its heart, it’s all about fluff and romance. Love conquers all and that stuff. So maybe I should try to disregard the aspects that made me uneasy. But then, reviews are meant to be subjective and reflect my personal perception, so here we go.

I couldn’t get past the – to me – entirely insane concept of a private company acting like a sovereign state, entering, attacking and killing people in another country. Said people were murderers and terrorists, so having them bite the dust was all well and good. But in what twisted universe is it considered okay for a private company to gallop around the world and – if found out – possibly instigate a war?

Insanity is what it is.

And Iris apparently being allowed to buy a rocket launcher as a private citizen?!? What even is that?!?

I like hot, sweaty guys with guns as much as the next girl, but the extent of gun worship in this read was a huge turn-off for me. So what could – and should – have been a 5-star story only gets 3.9 stars from me. And I will probably skip the upcoming Mike Bravo books entirely.

* A free e-copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher *


I'm a Swedish book nerd reading mostly steamy English romance novels. And since there is so much good stuff out there, and so much shitty stuff too. I just want to give credit where it's due (and diss the rest).