Crushed (Sons of San Clemente Novel) by Katherine Garbera


Overview by Amazon:

Heath “Con” Connelly is back in San Clemente after three stints in the Middle East with the Navy SEALS. Despite the fact that he’s known to his “brothers” at Preach’s Place for being better with his hands and dangerous when angered, he’s trying to turn over a new leaf. And that’s going…well, not great when he bumps into Mia Santos and notices someone has been beating up the beauty who was always the woman he could never have. 

Mia Santos, daughter of one of the most dangerous drug lords, finds herself in the cross-hairs of a turf war. Knowing she put herself there by making bad decisions when deep in a tequila bottle has sharpened her resolve to keep anyone—especially Con—from getting involved in the bloody and dangerous world that is her own. But Con’s not walking away and danger is like a second skin to him. He intends to protect his “family” and claim Mia, unless he gets crushed beneath the dual instincts of lust and rage…

This story gets started with some major action right away.  It’s basically Mexican drug lords fighting for turf and the hometown boys putting a stop to it.

We get to know Con first.  He has returned home after being a SEAL for years.  He seems adrift in his life and is floating along until he finds a purpose.  Mia becomes Con’s purpose in life and her battles become his.

What I loved about Mia was her inner struggles.  She has buried her problems deep in a tequila bottle for too long.  She is fighting for control of her life and I loved how the author didn’t make it a resolved issue.  Her struggle is real and present.  She worries that she is swapping one addiction for another when she becomes involved with Con.

The two have lusted after one another from afar, but once fate brings them together the sparks fly.  They have a very passionate relationship and it was exciting to read about it.  It isn’t just the hot sex between the two that is engaging, it’s the intimacy.  Con and Mia are alone in the world and have sordid pasts that stop them from building relationships that are solid.  To watch the two characters develop an intimate relationship was probably the most rewarding part of the book.

The action is pretty intense in the story.  The drug wars are brutal and violent.  If you can’t handle violence then be forewarned.  This book has a lot of physical battles with guns and fists.  I personally find violence hard to read, but within the context of this book it was necessary.

This is a fast and quick paced book.  The plot moves quickly and I found myself frantic to know what would happen next.  I enjoy reading stories where there is camaraderie among the characters and they have created a family unit.  This story features the Preacher and his boys of San Clemente with Con getting his turn at happiness.  Happiness comes at a cost for Mia and Con and it was really interesting to read how they got to their happily ever after.


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