After her long-term relationship with Rhys fell apart, Lani had her first one-night stand ever. Things never go to plan for Lani and now she’s alone and pregnant. The family trauma in her past has shaped her life and Lani is determined to be a good mother and get herself healthy. When she meets Geo, she’s attracted to him, but his pain mirrors her own and Lani isn’t in the best place to start a new relationship, especially since Geo travels all the time as a Navy SEAL K-9 handler.
Geo is living the life he always wanted as a SEAL and as a K-9 handler. His focus and his dedication are all he knows, but the unspeakable happened when his close friend and teammate committed suicide and Geo has no idea how to handle it for many reasons. Lani understands his pain and he finds himself gravitating to her gentle kindness.
Lani and Geo’s lives overlap and they know they could be a good fit, but Geo can’t imagine a life that doesn’t involve deployment and Lani wants something more stable for herself and her baby.
Trusting a Warrior is the third book in Hansen’s Loving a Warrior series and features Lani, who has been seen in the earlier books. Lani and Geo’s relationship is new to the series and works on its own, but it would be helpful to be grounded in the relationships and stories of other characters that appear in this book, as they all have continuing stories.
Hansen approaches and handles the difficult and traumatic subject of suicide as it affects both Geo and Lani. They both have lost someone close to them and neither has gotten the help or support they need. As Geo learns, suicide is not something that is discussed or tolerated by many in the military and he really has no where to turn, so he locks down his trauma—or tries to.
When the two meet, they immediately start a conversation, as it is sometimes easier to talk to a stranger, and they realize they have more in common than they would have thought. But with Lani’s pregnancy and Geo being constantly on the move as a SEAL, it seems an unlikely time to start a relationship, however Lani and Geo are exactly what the other needs. Hansen takes her time with both of them and unravels their trauma over time and the character development is layered and thorough.
It is not common to see a bisexual male character in a M/F romance and Geo has had relationships with both men and women. He keeps it quiet in the military, but his close friends know and Geo is proud of who he is. Geo’s K-9 dog, Bosch, is also a welcome addition to the story and Hansen writes both grief and military life from a place of knowledge as opposed to research.
The book also further wraps up the relationships between former MCs Matt and Shane, and Devon and Rhys, and their inclusion added to the overall feel of the book and the series. The romance between Geo and Lani is quieter here as they become friends, fall in love, and find a home together between surviving grief and military life. Trusting a Warrior is a great addition to this series as it tackles falling in love while navigating real issues of grief and moving forward, while honoring and remembering the past.