I can’t believe it’s almost two years since I stayed in with K.T. Lee to chat all about her book Calculated Deception in a post you can see here. With K.T.’s latest book Calculated Reaction, now available, I simply had to ask her all about how she writes such strong female characters and luckily she agreed to do so!
Calculated Reaction is available for purchase here.
Special Agent Alexis Thompson is eager to get back to work after getting shot on her last FBI assignment. When she discovers that the man who ordered the hit has sent one of his spies to an energy research facility, Alexis convinces the CIA to send her to take him down. This time, Alexis is bringing along her new partner, Waffle, a highly-trained explosives detection dog.
Matt Brown is a former Navy SEAL who is now working as an engineering professor. He also helps his friend, CIA Operations Officer Cam Mitchell, whenever his skills are needed. When Alexis goes undercover, Cam sends Matt along to try to keep Alexis from coming home in a body bag.
Matt and Alexis soon discover that their enemy’s plans go far beyond good old-fashioned espionage. With the clock ticking, Alexis and Matt must figure out how to stop a dangerous explosion before they become collateral damage.
Calculated Reaction is Book 4 in The Calculated Series. All books in The Calculated Series may be enjoyed as standalone novels or as a series.
Writing Strong Women
A Guest Post by K.T. Lee
“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes, it’s the quiet voice that says ‘I will try again tomorrow.’” – Mary Anne Radmacher
Strength is, at its core, the ability to remain determined and courageous when faced with adversity. In some cases, the strength displayed by the characters in the Calculated books is the more obvious sort of strength, such as their ability to defend themselves or utilize their weapons skills to neutralize a criminal. Equally compelling to me, however, is their strength of character – the years of dedication and internal motivation required to achieve their physical strength or their courage in the face of unimaginable circumstances.
In each Calculated book, the notion of strength is explored through characters of all genders. While there are plenty of examples in literature of a damsel in distress, the heroines in my books join a legion of books turning this trope on its head. That’s not to say that the men in my series are pushovers by any means – they too bring skills to the table, forming an integral part of a compelling and interesting team. The teams that result demonstrate collaboration and confidence, and a fair amount of good-natured teasing that is possible when partners respect one another enough to have a little fun, even while chasing down villains.
In Calculated Deception (Book 1), engineering professor Ree Ryland used tough personal experiences as fuel to sharpen her self-defense skills. While these skills help her best a formidable opponent, it is her refusal to put her students and others at the university in danger to maintain her own personal safety that gives the FBI their big break…and results in strong and independent FBI Agent Parker falling for the professor.
This book kicks off a series that features imperfect heroines triumphing over their own challenges and external villains. Vaccine scientist Dani begins to overcome a traumatic experience with the help of her CIA allies and the courage she must find in order to stop a plot to release a bioweapon in Calculated Contagion (Book 2).
In Calculated Sabotage (Book 3), Quinn‘s fierce skills and love for her friend allow her to realize that strength isn’t all physical – by accepting help from other experts, she learns how to build a team. The physically formidable Cam Mitchell is a strong and compassionate partner to Quinn once they begin to trust one another.
In the newest release in the series, Calculated Reaction (Book 4), Special Agent Alexis Thompson’s strength comes from not giving up after being shot by an enemy in the prior books. Yes, she must meet the FBI’s stringent physical requirements to get back out in the field, but she does this by overcoming grueling physical therapy and reinventing herself to keep both her mind and her body strong. And when former Navy SEAL Matt Brown meets the charming and quick-witted agent (and her canine companion, Waffle), it is her strength at recognizing the value their collaboration brings to the table that ultimately leads to them saving the day together.
That’s fascinating K.T. Thank you so much. I love the way you show that strength comes from all aspects, not just the physical part of a person.
K.T. Lee is a writer, mom and engineer who grew up on a steady diet of books from a wide variety of genres. When K.T. began to write the kind of books she wanted to read, she mixed clever women and the sciences with elements from thrillers (and a dash of romance) to create The Calculated Series.