"A Superhero tale that packs a 2 for 1 punch - hot romance and signature humor"
The wedding was absolutely perfect in every way. And why
not, she'd planned it herself down to the last detail. The
only flaw was that it wasn't hers. It would have been had
her fiance Travis Teague a.k.a. Tornado of Big Time's elite
superhero squad, the Fearless Five, not been murdered by
their arch nemesises the Terrible Triad. A year later, she
still missed him terribly.
She is Fiona Fine, one of Big Time's finest high fashion
designers. Well, that's her day job, at night she's the
Fearless Five's Fiera. Her powers include super strength and
the ability to control and throw fire. Being a superhero
himself Travis had understood her and accepted her exactly
as she was. With him she hadn't had to keep her double life
a secret and he hadn't been remotely embarrassed by her
super appetite that was necessary to sustain her powers.
Still she knew that Travis had loved her so much that he
wouldn't have wanted her to morn him forever. Her big
appetite isn't restricted to just food after all. She wasn't
ready to find love again but she wasn't averse to finding a
nice anonymous rebound guy to help take the edge off for the
night. What better place to find one than at a wedding?
Oh btw the wedding is Carmen Cole's. Carmen is the newest
member of the F5 also known as Karma Girl. She is marrying F5
superhero Striker, whose alter-ego is billionaire Sam
Sloane. While the pair is on their honeymoon, the three
remaining heroes will be doing double duty.
It looks like its Fiona's lucky day. She's captured the eye
of the model-gorgeous new guy in town Johnny Bulluci, older
brother of Fiona's biggest rival, designer Bella Bulluci.
The wealthy playboy doesn't waste any time putting the moves
on her either. Unfortunately before Fiona has decided
whether she wants to take him home or not they're
interrupted by his sister and then the event is crashed by
the newest ubervillain duo, Siren and Intelligal, who have
come to cash in on all the jewels and other goodies worn by
Carmen and Sam's wealthy guests.
Fiona takes advantage of the chaos to change into her Fiera
duds but she isn't the only one inclined to tangle with the
nasties. Johnny Bulluci enters the mix but his
interference blows Fiera's opportunity to apprehend the
pair. She's more than a little miffed about it and tells him
so. Of course not knowing she's Fiona he pretty much tells
her, "you're not the boss of me."
Fiona doesn't know it yet but Bulluci is also the new Johnny
Angel in town, an occupation he inherited when his father
was murdered by Siren and Intelligal. Of course he's not
exactly willing to share his secret identity with Fiona or
vice versa for that matter and although she's aware that
Bulluci had also lost someone near and dear, she doesn't
make the connection between the handsome hunk and the
motorcycle riding, superhero vigilante.
Bulluci is charm himself on their first date sending Fiona a
wining and dining her at Quicke's and rounding the night off
with a romantic Ferris wheel ride at the Big Time amusement
park, a place that brings back happy childhood memories of
times spent with his late father. Unfortunately nightly
interruptions come with the superhero territory so of course
just as things a starting to get steamy both of their cell
phones go off. Coincidence? What do you think?
Each time the Fearless 5 goes after Siren and Intelligal,
Johnny Angel seems to show up and get in the way. Unlike the
members of the F5, Angel doesn't intend to take the collar
and turn the villains over to the police. He wants revenge.
He tells Fiera he doesn't trust the police after what
happened to his predecessor. That makes Fiona like Angel
even less since her father is the Chief of Big Time's police
force and also a member of the F5. On the other hand as she
gets to know Johnny Bulluci better with each successive
date, the deeper her feelings for him grow.
Interestingly, Siren and Intelligal make a really unlikely
team. They are basically polar opposites. Siren as the name
indicates got all the beauty, while Intelligal of course got
all the brains not unlike the civilian Songe sisters, Erica
Songe, the pushy SNN reporter with the fake lips and boobs
who Fiona suspects is getting plumb assignments by sleeping
around and buttoned up Irene the frumpy uptight Scientist.
Hm. Fiona despises Erica. Okay she pretty much
despises all reporters, though she tolerates Carmen for
Sam's sake. But Erica is shameless and won't stop hitting on
Johnny when it's clear he's with her. Can you say brazen
hussy? Fortunately Johnny only has eyes for Fiona.
Like Carmen Cole a.k.a Karma Girl is fond of saying, Big
Time's superheroes and ubervillians aren't exactly good at
hiding their secret identities. I myself have suspected Kyle
Quicke of being Swifte for some time now. Perhaps someday
we'll find out for sure. So naturally little clues will lead
all the major players to know who's who by the end of the
story. The question is, what will this mean for Fiona and
Johnny's relationship if she can't convince the him to help
bring down the ubervillian's in a law abiding manner? I will
admit that it was great fun finding out. And as just about
anything seems possible in Big Time, Lulu Lo, and Henry Harris
a.k.a. Hermit get a delightful surprise as well.
As with all of the Big Time tales, this story is written in
first person from Fiona's perspective, and let's just say
the bitchy (her words) top fashion designer is far from
modest in either persona. Watching her try to control her
fiery temper and keep her gigantic appetite under wraps is
just a hoot. HOT MAMA like its super-strong heroine packs a
fantastic two for one punch, giving the reader a hot romance
along with Ms. Estep's signature super humor. We'll see more
of Fiona and Johnny in the third Big Time book JINX
featuring Bella Bulluci, Johnny's little sister and Fiona's
biggest rival in the fashion industry. Sparks are sure to
fly! In the meantime, enjoy HOT MAMA and try not to burn
your fingers turning the pages.
Reviewed by Leslie Tramposch
Posted August 25, 2008