Our hero, Frank Castello is a rugged take-charge guy who is neat, organized and always putting his family first. Add in a dash of charming and a heaping spoonful of pure gentleman and it makes him a perfect hero! If only he didn’t hate photographers, but then he has his reasons and it will take a firestorm to change his mind.
Sydney Peele lost her father as a child and cherishes the gift he gave her long ago, her treasured camera. Now, a rising photographer with an eye for capturing life and a booming business, she’s enjoying her career as a fashion photographer. Too bad her nomadic brother can’t get his act together and leave her out of shenanigans.
After a night out on a job, Sydney returns to find her home up in flames. Everyone now has questions for her. Why? Why? Why? I love Sydney and there is no reason to incinerate her life like that, but ooohhh it brings her and Castello together. Suzanne, if you must I will forgive you just this one time ;).
Castello will need to break protocol and about every other “inner voice” warning to get to the bottom of what happened. In order to find out who has targeted Sydney she will have to go off the grid. It doesn’t take long for things to heat up between them, but will they give in to their desire? Castello has one goal, discover who is after Sydney and protect her. Suzanne has packed so much into this fifth installment and fans of this series will be elated. I’m excited and I only know Castello from Captiol Danger.
Oh, quick note…. this book is best consumed in one serving. Trust me, I sat down and could not turn my e-reader off. The writing is full of adventure, tension, romance and everything you would expect from Suzanne. From the fist page you can tell Castello had a story to tell and he sure did! I’d love to see this as a TV movie – when you finish I’m sure you’ll agree! Check out her storyboard on pinterest for her inspiration (link at the bottom).
Need a few more reasons? There is nothing sexier than Frank’s two word sentences, a handful of bad guys, a few puzzles and old school photography. Well done Suzanne – this was exactly what I needed last night :).
Discover for yourself how action packed & exciting a Deputy U.S. Marshal can be! This two peppers spicy latte hot delight has just enough sizzle to make you tingle and a lot of action! Oh, and yes, it’s for mature readers 18+.
While this book is part of a series it can be read as a standalone. If you are a reader who must read in order, check out Suzanne’s backlist and also be sure to read Capitol Danger.
I received this ARC from the author for a fair and honest review. Only a few more days till this hot book is released. When I have a link I’ll include it.
Check out this Excerpt of EXPOSED now and see for yourself (thank you Suzanne).
The North Bank Park was located just west of downtown Columbus, below where the Olentangy and Scioto rivers merged to form the bigger Scioto River. The park itself was built on what used to be the pump house for the old Ohio Penitentiary.
He’d happily pointed out to Luke how ironic it was that two federal agents were getting married where criminals were once housed. For some reason, the kid didn’t think it was funny at all.
Locking his door, Frank left the reserved spots in the parking lot perpendicularly down the street from the park. A number of parking meters had been reserved on the street beside the park, but they should be for the Edgars’ immediate family and grandparents. Besides, his leg could use the exercise.
Walking down Neil Avenue towards the Park’s glass-enclosed pavilion where the ceremony would be held, he enjoyed the crisp June air. He had to give it to Luke and Abigail, they’d picked the perfect day for the wedding. He wasn’t overly romantic, didn’t get gushy when people talked about weddings, but he did believe good things should happen to good people. Especially when one of them almost died.
A little more than a year ago, Abigail had been in the hospital. She’d thrown herself between Luke and a knife. Nearly losing her had been the final wake-up call for the youngest Edgars brother. He’d dropped his playboy lifestyle to focus entirely on Abigail, even after she recovered.
As Frank crossed Long Street in front of the pavilion, a taxi pulled to a stop at the crosswalk. From the backseat emerged a petite woman, her blonde hair pulled up into some zany sort of a bun with strands of it falling loose like straws from an unkempt pile of hay. Dressed in green-khaki cargo pants, hiking boots and a huge, oversized blue sweater, she had two travel bags hanging off her shoulders and her hand hooked around the handle of a garment bag. Aviator-style sunglasses hid half her face.
“Let me get you some extra cash for getting me here so quickly from the airport,” she said to the driver as she fished around in one of her bags, losing her grip on the garment bag. “Oh, no!” she yelped, trying to manage everything and losing the carryon bag at the same time.
Acting out of instinct, Frank took two quick strides and grabbed both bags before they hit the pavement. “Got ’em.”
“Oh, my God! Thank you,” the woman said, turning a relieved smile up at him as if he’d saved her from dropping a baby onto the concrete. “I don’t know what I would’ve done had that crashed on the ground.”
She reached for the carryon bag, but he held it firm, wondering what the hell she had in it to make it so heavy, and nodded at the taxi driver behind her.
“Oh, yes.” She handed the other man some money and took the handle of the larger suitcase from him.
“You sure this where you want me to drop you, ma’am?” the driver asked in slightly halting English with a middle-eastern accent. He scanned around the pavilion and office buildings in the area then back at her, concern in his eyes.
The woman laughed. Not a childish tinkling or giggling, but a husky, dark, whiskey kind of sound that caught Frank smack in the middle of his chest.
“Yes, I’m sure,” she said, smiling at the man. “You’re probably used to your fares wanting to go to a hotel or their homes, but this is where I need to be this afternoon. It’s a wedding.”
The driver glanced at her clothes, then over at Frank before shrugging. “Most happy felicitations to you both,” he said, then climbed into his cab once more.
The woman started to protest, but the driver had already pulled out into traffic. She watched the taxi for a moment, then whirled on him. He’d never been trout fishing, but her open-mouthed expression of bewilderment reminded him of a fish he’d seen on one of those nature sports shows shown on Sundays before the football games aired.
“How could he possibly think we were getting married?” she asked.
He glanced down at the three-piece tuxedo he had on. Then, quirking one brow, he nodded at the garment bag in her hand. “I have no idea.”
That had her lips slamming shut into a line. He imagined she was glaring at him from behind those sunglasses, which he suddenly wished were gone so he could see what color her eyes were.
“I take it you’re here for the Whitson-Edgars wedding?” she finally asked.
He refrained from asking if there was more than one wedding here today. He might be a bachelor, but he knew that a sarcastic comment to an already irritated woman might result in bodily injury. Instead, he just nodded.
Suddenly her face lit up with a hundred-watt, straight-to-his-gut smile. “Oh, my God, you’ve got to be Frank. Abby’s told me all about you. A man of few words.” Letting go of her suitcase handle, she stuck her hand out to him. “I’m Sydney Peele.”
“The photographer.” He stared at her hand as if it were a cobra ready to strike, his humor and interest in the little tornado of a woman flattened like a tire running over nails in the road.
Her smile fading, she withdrew her hand and grabbed her suitcase once more. “Um, yes. I was…hoping to get here before the wedding party arrived.”
“They’re not here yet.” He wanted to hand her the heavy carryon bag, which he suspected carried the cameras she used to ply her trade into people’s privacy, and distance himself from the pariah of modern social technology. Paparazzi. Photographers. Demon spawn. But the woman already had both hands full of bags.
“That’s good. I promised Abby I’d be here to take pictures before the wedding started. Please tell me there’s somewhere I can change? I just got off the plane and came straight here.” There was a slight hesitation in her voice as she glanced around at the glass enclosed pavilion.
Damn it. As much as he wanted to drop her camera case on the concrete sidewalk and possibly smash the offensive equipment of her trade, he couldn’t ignore that little signal of distress.
It was a character flaw. The need to protect. His late partner called it his hero-complex. He couldn’t let someone in trouble—even if it was simply finding a place to change clothes—fend for themselves.
“This way,” he said. Stepping around her, he led the way to the brick portion of the facility in back of the pavilion without waiting to see if she followed. At the entrance, he did hold the door for her, but refused to help wrangle the roll-on type suitcase in for her. “Third door on the right is the women’s restroom.”
“Thanks,” she said with another of those overly-bright smiles, and strutted down the hallway.
Despite her chosen profession, he had to admit those pants shifted nicely on her bottom as she sashayed away, her blonde hair bouncing like a halo around her head as she walked.
It wasn’t until the door closed behind her that he realized he still held her bag of camera equipment. He should just leave it outside the bathroom on the floor. But someone might steal them, and he had a feeling it would be very expensive for her to try and replace them.
He stalked to the door and knocked on it—hard. “You forgot your bag.”
The door opened a minute later.
“Oh, thanks,” she said with another smile, the aviator-framed sunglasses now on top of her head. She had a dusting of freckles on her nose and cheeks. “I usually don’t let that bag out of my sight,” she said, taking the bag and stepping back into the restroom, closing the door on him.
Her eyes were so blue they appeared purple.
Who the hell has purple eyes?
“Castello, give us a hand.”
He shook off the odd numbness that seeing Sydney Peele’s eyes had caused him to look to his left in time to see Dave and Matt Edgars hauling in two crates of wine. He hurried to help his friends load in the drinks for the reception, pushing inappropriate thoughts of the little photographer out of his mind. The last thing he needed was to give her any reason to focus her attention, or one of her cameras, on him.
Get to know Suzanne… ICYMI: Coffee With
USA Today Bestselling author Suzanne discovered romance novels in her aunt’s hidden stash one summer as a teenager. From that moment on she knew two things: she loved romance stories and someday she’d be writing her own. Her love for romances has only grown over the years. It took her a number of years and a secondary career as a nurse to finally start writing her own stories.
Currently there are two main series she’s actively writing in: The Westen Series, a contemporary small town series based in a fictional Ohio town where “things aren’t always what they seem”, and features Close To Home, Close To The Edge and Close To The Fire. The second series is the Romantic Suspense books KIDNAPPED, HUNTED, SEIZED and VANISHED, featuring the Edgars family as they fight for justice, even if it means stepping slightly outside the rulebook.
KIDNAPPED and HUNTED were both Golden Heart finalist, and SEIZED, book #3 in the Edgars Family Novels, was a finalist in the novella category of the OKRWA’s National Reader’s Choice Awards contest.
Suzanne’s sexy stories, whether they be her on the edge of your seat romantic suspense or the small town romantic suspense stories they’ll keep you thinking about her characters long after their Happy Ever After is achieved.
You can Find Suz at: