Alaskan Force Series
The “Alaskan Force Series” by Megan Crane is riveting, suspenseful, and combined with romance. What makes this series a stand out is the relationship and banter between the characters, with the mixture of honorably discharged special ops heroes, their dangerous missions, and the rugged Alaskan wilderness. They insert themselves into difficult and dangerous situations by protecting the vulnerable and rescuing those who need it. Below is a synopsis of each of the books with the most recent first.
In Delta Force Defender, Isaac Gentry, an ex-Marine, who grew up in Alaska heads the Alaska Force team. He has a love hate relationship with the snarky owner of the only restaurant in town, Caradine Scott, who has a past life that has been kept secret. Her past demons seem to have come back to haunt her after her café was blown up. After realizing that she cannot battle the criminal elements on her own she asks Isaac and company to help get her life back.
In Sergeant’s Christmas Siege, Templeton Cross, ex-Delta Ranger, is assigned to help in the investigation by Alaskan State Trooper Kate Holiday. They butt heads as Cross is willing to bend the rules of law, something Holiday, ‘a by the rule’s person,’ is unwilling to do. Yet, as the pressure mounts, and Christmas draws closer, it’s a given that they must work together to make sure someone is not going to get hurt. As time passes, both realize that they have so much in common, including having to face up to their dysfunctional families.
In Sniper’s Pride, Griffin Cisneros, ex-Marine sniper, is assigned to rescue Atlanta socialite Mariah McKenna. She realizes her cheating vindictive husband would rather have a dead wife than a divorce. Afraid that he will succeed in killing her next time, Mariah goes to Grizzly Harbor to hire the Alaska Force special operatives to help her survive.
In Seal’s Honor, Blue Hendricks, ex-Navy SEAL, is asked by his former childhood neighbor, Everly Campbell, to help her. She witnessed her roommate’s murder, and she’s afraid she’s next. Somewhat reluctantly, Blue agrees to help her, and they head back to Chicago to find the culprits.
Elise Cooper: How did you get the idea for the series?
Megan Crane: I was watching this reality show about Special Forces guys who ran this contest to see if someone could make it through the basic training they had to go through. It then came to me to write about a band of brothers’ story. BTW: It originally was not set in Alaska.
EC: In all the books Alaska seems to play a role?
MC: It is so majestic, the Last Frontier, and far away. I am so glad we changed the setting because I think it makes the series better. A friend was the source for me, since she used to live there. I also used the Internet for facts and to get a sense of being there. I put in this quote in book 1, “It looks like a postcard…The village was a jumble of color, bright against the habitually gray Alaskan skies. It all gleamed in the bit of midday sunshine that lit up the protected cove.”
EC: How would you compare and contrast each heroine?
MC: The first two heroines are women in peril who seek out Alaskan force to help them. Kate, the third heroine, was not at all impressed with them and thought of them as vigilantes. Caradine, the heroine of the last book, is a character that has been in all the novels. She tries to keep everyone at arm’s length. I think all the heroines are smart, tough, athletic, somewhat stubborn. Caradine is definitely more grumpy, edgy, and prickly. She and Kate are feisty, and willing to do their own thing. Neither are really warm and fuzzy.
EC: How would you compare and contrast each hero?
MC: None of them would like to be called heroes. They consider those who were lost in battle as the true heroes. They wish they could save the world and would risk their lives. I think each of them are strong, intelligent, and intense. Isaac is in control and is a natural leader, Captain- Americanie. In the first book there was this quote, which shows their thinking, “Never apologize for things you are not sorry for.” I think this is a running theme because the book 2 quote is similar, “Life isn’t about making the right choice. It’s about what you do after the bad ones blow up in your face.”
EC: Something you incorporate in all the books is that each woman learned to help themselves?
MC: I have had stuff in my past. I started taking Israeli Martial Arts, which I put in all my books. Some abused women feel they must be vigilant and are afraid what might happen to them or what did happen to them. Having actual skills is very calming. I now have a civilian instructor certification. Alaska Force helped to save the women, but with defense classes they learned to save themselves as well.
EC: Is there a similarity between all the relationships?
MC: In the first two books the heroines think of their protectors as superheroes. The women get under their skin with their banter and teasing. The guys try to put distance between them, but realize their true feelings.
EC: What about the last two books?
MC: It is the opposite of the first two. Templeton makes Kate feel that way, and Isaac makes Caradine feel that way. The women are the ones who leave, who want to be in control of the relationship, and realize that the guys touched their heart. Each thinks they are in control of their own emotions and environment, but are not. With book 4, Caradine and Isaac had a tug of war going on. They fell in love instantly, which she fought for a long time.
EC: There is a dog in the last book, Horatio?
MC: He is a border collie. Very smart. I do not have one, but would want one. He is Isaac’s companion that shows a soft-side of him, but also Caradine. At the end of the book he takes her side. Horatio is not based on my dog, who is a pit-bull and lab mix that is very silly and loving.
EC: In the last book all the characters have page time?
MC: I liked the two scenes, one where they “harass” Caradine and the other, the wedding between Blue and Emily. In this book, the former heroines hugged her and had her face that her armor was broken. The Caradine quote, “Please don’t tell me this is some horrible girlfriend thing.” Then there was this quote, “Approximately seventeen ice ages later, when Caradine had died inside so many times she’d come back, haunted herself, and died again while still being hugged against her will.”
EC: Next book?
MC: It is called Special Ops Seduction and will be out in January. The story is based around two Alaska Force members, Jonas Crow and Bethan Wilcox. Both have a past with each other. In this book they must pretend to be a couple. This might be the last one. Whereas the other books had the character leads traveling to a place in the Continental US, either Chicago, Atlanta, or Maine. But this one has them traveling from California to Portugal to Canada.