Fire and Ice is a romance spy novel by Anne Stuart, a best-selling author of hundreds of romance novels. This book is the fifth in the Ice series, which follows a Japanese spy organization called the Committee. The main characters of Fire and Ice are Jilly Lovitz, the half-sister of another character in the series; Summer; and Reno, the cousin of Summer's lover, Taka. The book follows Reno and Jilly after Jilly takes a trip to visit her sister in Japan, and Reno realizes her life is in danger. The two are thrown into increasingly harrowing situations trying to keep Jilly alive, and as they escape danger they fall deeper and deeper in love.
The book begins with Jilly, who is living in Southern California. Jilly is blonde and brainy, the opposite of the Valley Girl stereotype, and has recently fallen out of a chaotic love affair. Looking for some support, Jilly decides to take a trip to visit her sister Summer, whom she believes is living in Japan with her partner, Taka. Taka and Summer are agents in a notorious spy organization known as the Committee, but Jilly knows very little about their work.
When Jilly flies to Japan hoping to visit her sister in Tokyo, Reno, the cousin of Summer's partner Taka, discovers that she is in-transit and realizes he has to stop her from going to Summer's apartment. Reno knows that Summer and Taka have recently fled the country to escape Russian mercenaries, who are trying to kill all Committee agents. Reno realizes that if Jilly goes to Summer's apartment she will be executed, and decides to stop her before she arrives, despite a promise he made to Summer and Taka to stay away from Jilly. Jilly and Reno had met many years before, when Jilly was only eighteen, and had immediately developed a love connection despite their dramatically different appearances and lifestyles. Reno, a Japanese punk with a teardrop tattoo and long, brightly-colored hair, looks strange next to beautiful, blonde Jilly. Reno vows that despite his crush, he won't spend any more time than necessary with Jilly.
When Jilly arrives, Reno sweeps her off her feet on the streets of Tokyo just as she is approached by a gang of violent mercenaries. He takes her on the back of his motorcycle to a traditional Japanese inn – all the while, Jilly is reeling from watching her old crush kill three men in front of her eyes. She is appalled by the violence, though thankful that Reno saved her life. At the inn in the countryside, Jilly and Reno are again attacked by Russians, and have to flee. Reno makes the decision to take Jilly to stay with his grandfather, a Japanese mob boss who runs a bathhouse in the countryside. He hopes to leave Jilly there, to avoid any potential for romance.
Unfortunately, things don't work out as Reno planned. At the bathhouse, Reno and Jilly are once again bombarded by mercenary agents. Reno is taken aback, and begins to wonder if someone working for his grandfather is a traitor. He and Jilly flee and end up in a tiny capsule hotel in the city, where they are forced into impossibly close quarters, each fighting back their attraction to each other. Eventually the couple find themselves irresistibly drawn to each other, despite their reservations – Jilly about Reno's job and his violence, and Reno about his vow to his brother and sister-in-law not to drag Jilly into his dangerous line of work. Their love is inevitable, and together they fight off the Russian mobs who seek to end both of their lives.
Anne Stuart is a romance novelist from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She has written over one hundred novels, and has received a Romance Writers of America Lifetime Achievement Award. She is also a three time winner of the Rita Awards, for her books Banish Misfortune, Winter's Edge, and Falling Angel. Some of her series titles include the Catspaw Series, The House of Rohan, Ice, Century of American Dreams, and others. She has also written dozens of stand-alone romance novels. Her Ice series includes five novels: Black Ice, Cold as Ice, Ice Blue, Ice Storm, Fire and Ice, and On Thin Ice. She has also contributed to many multi-author series.