Secret Admirer Secret Admirer by
Published by on May 30, 2018
Pages: 227
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four-half-stars

His mission: Get close to Alice May. Learn her secrets. Expose her lies. And if she's guilty...lock her up.

Undercover FBI Agent Zander Todd typically spends his days and his nights tracking killers. But, lately, he's been pretending that he's a different man. He's been working his way into the life of beautiful but reserved Alice May. He's supposed to make her trust him completely. Alice is the key to a serial murder case that the FBI has been working for years. She's also the chief suspect.

Alice was engaged to Hugh Collins, the man who turned out to be the elusive "Secret Admirer" killer. Hugh picked women that he thought were perfect, he seduced them, and when they failed to live up to his image of perfection...their Secret Admirer brutally killed them. The only time that Hugh broke his MO--that was with Alice. Hugh was on his way to the chapel to marry Alice when the FBI killed him. The FBI has long suspected that Alice may have been involved in the killings, but they could never find solid evidence to tie her to the crimes.

Her goal: Bury her past. Pretend to be someone new. Live a lie.

Alice May knows better than to trust a handsome man with a seductive smile. The last time she fell for a charmer, she learned her lover was a serial killer. Not the news a woman expects to learn on her wedding day. Since that brutal revelation, she's sworn off men, she's gone into hiding to get away from voracious reporters, and she hasn't let herself get close to anyone.

But...a year has passed since her life fell apart. And it's hard to be alone all the time. She thinks that one night, one date with Zander might remind her of what it's like to be alive. To feel normal. The passion that burns between them is white-hot and electrifying. It's so intense that it scares Alice. She never expected to ever want anyone that much.

He will punish her.

Their passion ignites the fury of a killer who has been watching her, waiting for her. A man who has finally decided that Alice isn't quite so perfect. And if she's not perfect, then Alice has to die.

When Alice's life is threatened, Zander must reveal his true identity. The new betrayal batters at Alice's soul, but when Zander takes her into protective custody, they are forced into close proximity. With a killer watching her every move, Alice has no choice but to trust Zander. Because her past isn't dead, but if Alice isn't very, very careful...she will be.

The plot for this book is fantastic! Are there more out there like this? Let me know in the comments, because I think I found my new catnip. Undercover heroes (or heroines)!

Alice was set to marry a man who was killed in a police chase on the way to the wedding. Her fiance turned out to be the Secret Admirer-a serial killer of women who looked like her. And she had no idea. The FBI however, doesn’t buy that. They believe the Secret Admirer had a partner, and since some of the “mementos” that he kept were in her house, they think she was that partner. A year later, she’s trying to rebuild her life, and has isolated herself from everyone. Her hunky neighbor Zander has been helping her fix some of the problems her cabin keeps having, and he’s making her rethink her lonely life.

Zander is an FBI agent who is supposed to get close to her and prove that she was working with the Secret Admirer killer. All those things going wrong with her cabin? Sabotaged by the FBI so he can pose as a helpful handy neighbor. But as he gets to know Alice, he not only believes she’s innocent, but he’s starting to fall for her. She finally accepts a date with him, and it goes so well she runs to his cabin afterwards to let him know she’s ready for more. She’s tired of hiding and she’s ready to live again.

But there’s another murder and it’s suspiciously similar to the Secret Admirer killings. Soon Zander realizes that she’s no longer a suspect in his eyes, but now a victim. And when someone breaks into her home and trashes her room, he blows his cover and calls his team in.

Alice is furious, and hurt, and furious some more. Zander’s partner thinks she knows more than she says, and doesn’t want to admit that she could be a victim. And Zander? He never thought about what would happen if Alice knew he’d lied to her, and he’s finding that it hurts. The betrayal in her eyes has him wanting to fix everything. He wants to start over with her, but she’s obviously not having it. I love how this was handled, and I love that she was mad at him. I think a lot of times, the betrayal is forgiven too quickly (for my taste) and I get that the story has to move along, but come on, she can be mad for more than one page! This one had her salty for a while, and I loved that.

This was a novella, but I really think this would have been an amazing full-length book. I love LOVE the betrayal trope, and Zander totally betrayed Alice, so this is totally my catnip. But I wanted more. So, give me more, mention some in the comments, or on twitter if you follow me there. I’m all in for the undercover trope now.

four-half-stars