The Bodyguard by Katherine Center Book Review
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She’s got his back.
Hannah Brooks looks more like a kindergarten teacher than somebody who could kill you with a wine bottle opener. Or a ballpoint pen. Or a dinner napkin. But the truth is, she’s an Executive Protection Agent (aka “bodyguard”), and she just got hired to protect superstar actor Jack Stapleton from his middle-aged, corgi-breeding stalker.
He’s got her heart.
Jack Stapleton’s a household name—captured by paparazzi on beaches the world over, famous for, among other things, rising out of the waves in all manner of clingy board shorts and glistening like a Roman deity. But a few years back, in the wake of a family tragedy, he dropped from the public eye and went off the grid.
They’ve got a secret.
When Jack’s mom gets sick, he comes home to the family’s Texas ranch to help out. Only one catch: He doesn’t want his family to know about his stalker. Or the bodyguard thing. And so Hannah—against her will and her better judgment—finds herself pretending to be Jack’s girlfriend as a cover. Even though her ex, like a jerk, says no one will believe it.
What could possibly go wrong???
Hannah hardly believes it, herself. But the more time she spends with Jack, the more real it all starts to seem. And there lies the heartbreak. Because it’s easy for Hannah to protect Jack. But protecting her own, long-neglected heart? That’s the hardest thing she’s ever done
There were not trigger warning with this book so these are the potentially sensitive topics I observed:
- Car Accident
- Childhood Trauma/Abuse
- Death of a Parent
- Terminal Illness (not Main Characters)
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There are possible **SPOILERS** beyond this point!
Hannah agrees to be Jack’s bodyguard under the condition that she pose as his girlfriend. Fake dating is the best way to protect his sick mother from the truth… The truth about the threats Jack receives from crazed fans! Hannah struggles with the loss of her mother, and now, a breakup with a coworker that she will have to continue working with. Hannah is going to be nothing but professional with Jack Stapleton despite all of that. Jack and Hannah have an interesting meet cute, and all their interactions from that point forward had me giggling at Hannah or sighing at Jack. She tries to treat Jack like any other client, but there is always some reason that things do not go as planned on her hours spent working with him. I liked seeing Jack and Hannah together and getting to know Jack through Hannah’s eyes. The conversations they had were heartfelt and honest as they face some devastating history and circumstances as a pair.
Reading this book felt like a warm hug. This book is single POV from Hannah perspective. I loved Hannah’s no nonsense mindset. The Miss Congeniality vibes were strong here but this is a completely different storyline. Cutest Texas ranch vibes that weren’t extra costume cowboy! I am a huge Jack Stapleton fan! He was perfect for Hannah. I knew from that first interaction with his crooked glasses that I was gonna like him. My heart really hurt for Hannah in this one but the HEA here was so sweet!
I would recommend this read because it’s fun and sweet. There is a bit of suspense in this book but the good feelings and hilarious moments keep this book from being too sad with the heavier topics it touches on such as grief, childhood trauma and terminal illness. Overall, I really liked Hannah and Jack together and this book convinced me to read from Katherine Center’s backlist in the future!
Mostly just kissing and then just a couple closed door scenes at the end.
Setting / World / Universe
This book is partially set in Houston and partially on Jack’s family ranch. I enjoyed the ranch imagery complete with them interacting with farm animals often. I miss the beauty of rural Texas. Don’t miss I10 traffic in Houston though lol I was pleased with the glimpses we do get of the farm from their walks and activities.
Genre & Tropes
Contemporary Women’s Fiction
- Close Proximity
- Bodyguard x Client
- He Falls First
“People loving you for your best qualities is not the same as people loving you despite your worst.”
“There’s nothing like the mutuality of a hug—the way you’re giving comfort but you’re getting it, too.”
“The people we love help teach us who we are. The best versions of who we are, if we’re lucky.”
Check out The Bodyguard on Amazon here.