Tour of Duty (When Riley Met Cara #2) by C.J. Pinard

Tour of Duty

After loving the first book of this fantastic sweet, contemporary romance series, I adore C.J. Pinard’s ‘Tour of Duty (When Riley Met Cara #2)’. A little darker and serious than before, Tour of Duty is hotter and more sensual as well as taking heart-warming to another level.

Hot soldier, Riley, is to be in California for the summer only, before he is due back in Colorado to prepare for his next tour. During a night out he meets single mum and recent divorcee, Cara Reid. However, after spending a night with Cara he begins to realise he wants to spend his whole summer with her. But what will happen once the summer is over and his nine month tour of Afghanistan begins?

Whereas the first story, Patriotic Duty, introduced the characters and was told from Cara’s point of view, in Tour of Duty we enter the mind of Riley, seeing their relationship from his point of view. The reader has an insight into the basic daily routine that Riley has when on tour in Afghanistan and his feelings and emotions he has for Cara (from meeting her, spending summer with her and leaving Cara to tour Afghanistan). Being in Riley’s mind was HOTTER and more SEXIER than Cara’s, as everything appears more dramatic and the more direct, hands-on approach. Oh yes, I LOVED this one even more!!!

As suspected, Tour of Duty is a little darker and dramatic than Patriotic Duty (When Riley Met Cara, Book 1) as the reader truly understands the danger that Riley is in when on tour, experiencing every moment that Riley has in Afghanistan. The reader fully appreciates his need to protect Cara from knowing all of the horrors of war. However, the reader is still provided with the fun, cheeky and hot aspects of their relationship, as in Book 1. And I love how C.J. Pinard can fill her romantic novels with so many emotions. C.J. also has the ability to write some fantastic HOT scenes and, although these characters are falling quite seriously for each other, these scenes are so fun to read, adding a little enlightenment to the fear that their relationship may not last.

Cara is enjoying her summer of fun with Riley, although underneath fearing his departure. I love how Cara is so relaxed and can be herself around Riley. She is fun and very lovable, and as any parent would, she takes care in introducing Riley to her son. Riley is very sweet, although can appear the strong, silent type when he wants to protect Cara from being hurt, as he too fears his departure may mean the end for them. Cara is his world and the reader feels his sincerity towards her throughout the story.

The characters are quite real in many senses. They are a bundle of emotion, going through the extremes of love and in some ways may be flawed. Their longing to protect each other, especially on Riley’s side, can mean miscommunication or lack of communication, causing both sides to feel neglected, paranoid and hurt at times. This does make the characters easy to relate to and also, reading both books of the series, will show the thoughts and mind set of each character throughout each step of their relationship. This allows the reader to be completely understanding of Cara and Riley, wanting for them both so much to forget their fears and just go for it!

Tour of Duty is a short, sweet contemporary romance and it is an absolute pleasure to read a sexy, romantic story told from the male’s side and realising all of their true emotions. To sum up, Riley is that hot, cute soldier from Book 1 who’s looking for more than somewhere to spend the night or the summer – he wants to spend his life with Cara Reid. Due to the hot love scenes this book is recommended for those above the age of 18 yrs.

A Reader’s Review Blog received a copy of Tour of Duty from the author in return for an honest and fair review.

You can find Tour of Duty (When Riley Met Cara, Book 2) by C.J. Pinard on, and Smashwords.

You can currently find Book 1, Patriotic Duty on Amazon US for $1.23 and Amazon UK for 75p. (Prices subject to change.)

If you would like to contact C.J. Pinard you can reach her on Facebook at or you can e-mail her at

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

Patriotic Duty (When Riley Met Cara, Book 1) by C.J. Pinard

Patriotic-duty-smashwords1400Patriotic Duty (When Riley Met Cara, Book 1) has everything that I love in this contemporary romance by C.J. Pinard (Enchanted Immortals series). This short novel is fun, cheeky, sexy and saucy but not without the drama of a beautiful romance. If you’re looking for a hot, cute soldier who’s looking for more than somewhere to spend the night, then Riley is your man and Patriotic Duty is your kind of book!

Single mum and recent divorcee, Cara Reid spends most of her weekends with her best friend, Miranda, having fun going to clubs, living it up and meeting hot guys. She is young and not in the least thinking to settling down any time soon, especially after her experience with her ex. However, one night after hooking up with Riley her summer is planned. He is to be in California for the summer before he is due back in Colorado, and so they spend summer together.

Cara naturally opens up to him and accepts his ways far more than she would anyone else. She is falling for him, even though she doesn’t want to admit it. Of course, it is just a summer fling. Or at least that is what she keeps informing Miranda when she stops partying for a while to be with Riley. However, as the summer comes to a close, Riley is given orders to do a tour of nine months in Afghanistan. As they agree to keep in touch, Cara is left feeling a little lost. Still not wanting to admit to her true feelings and yet not wanting to return to her life of partying with Miranda, Cara is left with a decision to make. Will she wait for her cute, hot soldier or does she move on with her life?

During the summer that they are together, Cara and Riley spend day trips together, go to a concert, visit bars, have some hot, fantastic sex, and Riley even gets to meet Cara’s son on some occasions. This shows how well their relationship is going, as usually Cara keeps this side of her life away from her son. Riley is very sweet, although the strong, silent type in some instances. Cara seems to be his world and the reader feels his sincerity to her. It is only his quieter side at times that makes Cara and the reader wonder what he is really thinking. But all will be revealed as the story moves on.

Patriotic Duty is a nice, light romance that becomes a little more serious and dramatic as the novel enters its second half, especially with Riley on tour in Afghanistan and Cara having little contact with him. What is going through Cara’s mind? Can she focus on getting her party life back with Miranda?

When Riley Met Cara has the potential to bceome much more complex and darker as the series moves on. However, for the first book of the series it does have a simple straight forward plot, which I loved after reading some heavy psychological horrors recently!! There were parts early on that made me laugh out loud as the interaction between Cara and Miranda was fun. They certainly knew how to have a laugh and cheer each other up.

I found Miranda to be a great supportive friend for Cara. Miranda, also a single mum, had been left by her ex to bring up their child and therefore, was in the same boat as Cara. Both characters are realistic and so long as the babysitters are available, of course young women would want to go out at weekends and have some fun. They also spend time together with their kids and meet up for lunch during their working week, and so have a tight bond, like sisters.

Although, Miranda’s attitude towards Cara does slightly change as she realises that Cara is becoming quite serious with Riley. She is perhaps worried for Cara that Riley will treat her bad in the end, and she may be a little jealous of the time that Riley spends with Cara when she could be with her. This is what makes Patriotic Duty realistic and easy to connect with. The characters have real feelings and thoughts that the majority of us have, and these lead to similar situations that we have either been in or those that we know have been in.

Brilliantly written by C.J. Pinard, Patriotic Duty is very fluid and there is not a moment that you lose grips with the story. I read this book in one day and so it is a very quick read. Due to the hot love scenes this book is recommended for those above the age of 18 yrs.

If you are a fan of C.J. Pinard’s urban fantasy/paranormal series, Enchanted Immortals, you will see a whole different side of her work in Patriotic Duty. C.J. has shown just how versatile her writing can be, and I for one absolutely love it. I am looking forward to reading the second book in the When Riley Met Cara series.

A Reader’s Review Blog received a copy of Patriotic Duty from the author in return for fair and honest review.

You can find Patriotic Duty (When Riley Met Cara, Book 1) by C.J. Pinard on, and Smashwords.

If you would like to contact C.J. Pinard you can reach her on Facebook at or you can e-mail her at

Reviewed by Caroline Barker