Thursday, March 23, 2017

Dangerous Games (O’Connor & Kincaid #1) by Tess Diamond

Title: Dangerous Games
Classification:  Adult Fiction
Genre: Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller
Format: Paperback; 384 pages
Publisher: Avon (March 28, 2017)
ISBN-10: 0062655809
ISBN-13: 978-0062655806
Author's Website: n/a
Notes:  I received an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am also an Avon Addict which means I love the books that Avon publishes enough to volunteer to read as many ARCs and books as they can send my way. So you'll be seeing a lot of books reviewed by me from this publisher. Please note, however, that if I don't like a book, it will be truthfully reflected by a low rating. Please note that as I read an ARC, any quotes listed are subject to change, they will need to be checked and verified against the final version.
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When Maggie Kincaid was a young girl, she and her sister were kidnapped. She escaped, but her sister did not. The experience changed her, but she did not let it define her. She grew up to become one of the FBIs best hostage negotiators, but two years ago when one of her cases ended in bloodshed she quit the Bureau and vowed never to go back. Now. a teenager with high profile parents has been kidnapped and they're looking to her for guidance. Knowing her background, Frank is confident that Maggie Kincaid will be unable to say no to this case and he's been looking for a way to get her back.

Over the years, Jake O'Connor has gained a reputation for getting difficult things done right the first time around with little fuss. When a US senator's daughter goes missing he's asked to step in and ensure that the Senator's security is top notch and to make sure that if a hostage situation arises, things are handled smoothly. He's a soldier at heart, but over the years he's learned there is more than one way to serve your country.

"With jobs like ours, there are going to be failures, (...) People will die. Sometimes it's our fault...sometimes it isn't. Sometimes life just screws with us, and even though we did everything right, followed all the rules, and hit the right targets, sometimes people still die."
This was a fast paced, action packed, emotional thrill ride of a read. From the moment Maggie arrives at the scene, a snowball effect develops as things start to escalate at an alarming rate. What looks to be a standard kidnapping with a ransom demand quickly morphs into so much more.

In a case where things aren't always what they seem and the clock ticking. Maggie fights to save Kayla Thebes and bring her home safely. From the beginning Maggie feels there's something off about Senator Thebes. She senses there's something he's not telling her and that little tidbit of information could make the difference between getting Kayla out dead or alive. In order to negotiate properly, she needs to know everything, no matter how sensitive the information may be. Her main objective is to get Kayla out alive--no matter what.

I loved how Maggie and Jake worked together to figure out what was going on. While I thought one minor character should probably have been killed during the negotiations, because I truly doubted they'd have survived in a real life situation, I guess the author thought it would be too dark for a romantic suspense novel. There is a cliffhanger at the end, but the way it was written left me wondering, at first, if it truly would end in one or if Maggie's imagination was working overtime. She had a lot of flashbacks of her own personal kidnapping, and I kept wondering if they were causing her to see something that wasn't really there. The way the book ended, however, left me with no doubt that her suspicions were well founded.

I gave this one 4 1/2 out 5 roses. The story grabbed me by the hand and wouldn't let go. While I wondered how many times government agencies actual do step on each others toes, I loved the added level of duplicity this one had. I look forward to reading many more stories by Ms. Diamond. This one is definitely worth your time. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earned a FAN rating--the temperature in the room seems to have suddenly gone up a couple of degrees and a fan would be nice.


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