Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Two Can Keep A Secret If One Of Them Is Dead

"No. Knowing the right moves helps you,
but sometimes you have to go with what feels right.
You have to break the rules and do something you think might not work.
Sometimes you have to take a gamble."
--Brighton Walsh, Exposed

Genre: NA Contemporary
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Pages: 256
Publication Date: July 21st, 2015
Source: ARC provided by publisher
Previous Books in Series: Captive
Goodreads Description

In this sexy, suspenseful New Adult novel, a young woman hiding from her criminal past is taken captive by her ex-boyfriend, the ultimate bad boy.

Evie is about to embark on the perfect life. Beautiful, poised, and engaged to a rising business star, she fits the part of trophy wife perfectly, except for one thing: her entire identity is a lie.

Five years ago she created a new identity for herself, but it all crashes back when something she witnessed years ago comes back to haunt her. Now she's in danger of losing more than her social status.

Determined to protect the careful life she's built for herself, Evie doesn't want anything to do with Riley, the criminal for hire who broke her heart years ago. But Riley has other ideas. He's never forgotten Evie, and to protect her, he steals her away. Hidden from the world, sparks begin to fly as old memories resurface and their passion reignites.
The Characterization
Brighton Walsh excels in giving the reader characters that are complex and who you root for. Riley and Evie (also see: Genevieve) are reunited after 5 years apart because after running with a rough crowd she had to disappear. Riley was told she was dead while in actuality she's been living under an assumed identity in Minnesota. She has her secrets and once they meet again, these secrets are what keep Evie from letting her guard down around Riley. I really liked Riley. I love the protective alpha male. He lost the love of his life once, damned if he was going to lose her again and act accordingly. Evie is fiercely independent and wants none of that alpha male bullshit. She is used to being the dominant one in the relationship, however five years later Riley isn't one to be bossed around. They butt heads frequently because of this thus upping the sexual tension ten fold. Their dynamic was equal parts fierce and sweet as they both reminisced about what they were to each other long ago. Loved this.

The Story
I loved the idea of Evie running away and having her old crew think she was dead, except for the people like Ghost who helped her get away, nobody else knew. I liked the exhilaration while reading of running away and trying to stay alive...however it fell flat from there on below.

The Pacing
The beginning of the book grabbed in its nonstop action of meeting the characters and Riley finding out Evie is alive and now being hunted. From there, the pacing almost comes to a standstill with the politics of this scenario. What is left in it's place is lots of sex and some conversation. While I enjoyed the parts when Evie opened up and told Riley her secrets piece by piece, I felt like there was so much emphasis on their sex and not enough on their vulnerability. I got really bored to be honest from the 40-70% point of the book. Then the very end was a rush of action and the conflict resolution came by rather quickly in my opinion.

I wanted to love this book however the overall story development and pacing killed it for me. This didn't have the same intense emotionality as Captive did, which I loved.

Standing In Line Outside
If you love second chance romances, complex emotional issues, and a side of suspense...this book's for you.

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