A matter of secrets…
Undercover cop Logan “Kash” Ryan can’t afford a distraction like his new neighbor Rachel Masters, even if she’s the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen. To catch a serial killer, he needs to stay focused, yet all he can think about is the feisty, long-legged coed whose guarded nature intrigues him
A matter of lies…
Deceived and hurt before, Rachel would rather be a single, crazy cat lady than trust another guy, especially a gorgeous, tattooed bad boy with a Harley, like Kash. But when his liquid-steel eyes meet hers, it takes all of Rachel’s will-power to stop herself from exploring his hot body with her own.
A matter of love…
As much as they try to keep it platonic, the friction between them sparks an irresistible heat that soon consumes them. Can Kash keep Rachel’s heart and her life safe even as he risks his own? Will she be able to forgive his lies … or will she run when she discovers the dangerous truth?
*Blurb from Goodreads*
I have to start this review with saying this is not your typical new adult romance. This has a Karen Marie Moning inspired cliff-hanger ending. BE FOREWARNED!
Rachel has not had an easy time in life, her parents died when she was still in high school, and she has been floating through life ever since. She followed her best friend to college, is studying something she isn’t truly passionate in, and to top it off she now constantly has be on the lookout for Blake, one of her childhood friends, who seems fascinated with her.
Kash’s last undercover assignment didn’t go so well, and his boss is sending him to Texas to avoid a contract on his life. Getting to work undercover on a serial murder case is just what he needs to keep him occupied. But having Rachel across the hall is proving to be more of a distraction than he ever thought possible. Keeping her safe from a stalker and working round-the-clock to try and find the killer is almost more than he can handle. But their relationship is what keeps him going, until all his truths come spilling out.
Let me start by saying the ending shocked me. Given the blurb, I was expecting your typical new adult romance with some cross over into romantic suspense. I expected to have the typical boy meets girl, boy and girl fall hard, boy and girl fight, boy and girl make up, and then boy and girl live happily ever after. WRONG! In this story there is another element, boy and girl get bitch-slapped by life once again, and shit has hit the proverbial fan. I was not at all expecting the end, and when I flipped to the last past on my eReader, I was ready to throw down with the author. Had I given this book a grade right that second, it would probably be a C-, because the end was honestly that unexpected. Thankfully, I took the time to think back on the first 99% of the book, and how much I enjoyed that.
Poor Rachel has had a rough time. Losing her parents and coasting through life hasn’t been easy. Being best friends with Candice is even harder (I’ll come back to her later). When her childhood crush, Blake (Candice’s cousin), asks her out, Rachel is reluctant to go. She doesn’t care for him like that anymore, and after she agrees to one date, she realizes that Blake has some serious issues. Blake is a controlling and abusive asshole that Rachel desperately needs to escape. Rachel had to fight tooth and nail to get even a little break. I loved that she was able to feel safe around Kash, especially since she desperately needed the chance to heal.
I liked Kash. He was alpha without being an alphahole, and although he kept his real job a secret, he also was so head over heels with Rachel that I could tell it hurt him to keep the secret. I loved that both he and Mason (his partner and BFF) were 100% devoted to the job, and went above and beyond to try and do everything they could to catch the killer. Splitting his attention between that and keeping Rachel safe was almost too much for him, and when Rachel found out about his real identity, their entire relationship came crashing down around them, and poor Kash was crushed. I loved him, but also wanted to kill him for giving up so easily when Rachel asked him too.
Other than the end, the other aspect of this book that drove me batty was Rachel’s best friend Candice. At times, she was the best best-friend a girl could ask for. She supported Rachel, provided a sounding board, they cried together, laughed together, and although Candice was a spoiled brat, she seemed to care deeply for her bestie. UNTIL Rachel accused her beloved cousin Blake of being a bad guy. At this point Candice’s character goes a little batty. She starts thinking Rachel’s lying, she doesn’t believe anything Rachel says, and starts acting outright hostile towards Rachel. As it was happening, I was pissed at her character. What a shitty way to act toward your best friend. But as the book went on I came to at least understand just how badly Candice was stuck between a rock and a hard place. Her cousin was telling her lies in one ear, while Rachel was trying to be open and honest. I could see why the conflict of who and what to believe would cause her to act erratically and unfairly toward Rachel. Did I like her for it, of course not. Did I understand it, yes.
All in all I thought this was a wonderful cross over book between the romantic suspense and new adult genres. I loved the stalker and serial killer aspects, but also liked the fact that they took a back seat to the romance between Rachel and Kash. I thought the romance was perfect as well. Kash was able to provided a safe haven for Rachel to heal and grow and Rachel gave Kash the stability he desperately needed within his undercover lifestyle. But I can’t stress enough how shocking the end was, and how much it felt like it came out of left-field. That being said, I am DESPERATE for the next book in this series!
I give Forgiving Lies a B-