By Misty Evans & Adrienne Giordano
July 21-July 26
Title: Cheating Justice
Series: The Justice Team (#2)
Authors: Misty Evans and Adrienne Giordano
Release Date: July 21, 2014
~ The second novel in the exciting and bestselling Justice Team romantic suspense series!!~
While investigating a government cover-up, former FBI agent Mitch Monroe is framed for murder. A wanted man, Mitch has no choice but to stay off the grid, and he needs Special Agent Caroline Foster—the FBI’s top sniper and a woman who wants nothing to do with him—to clear his name.
After sharing a single night of simmering passion with Mitch a year ago, Caroline hasn’t been able to get him out of her head. Or her heart. He's jeopardized her job once…helping him now could end her career. But a friend has been murdered, and no matter how Caroline feels about Mitch, he's not the killer. She needs answers, and she needs Mitch Monroe out of her life once and for all.
On the run and with no one to turn to, Mitch and Caroline can’t fight the reigniting passion between them. She’ll lose her career if she proves Mitch is innocent…he’ll lose his life if she doesn’t.
“I always said you had the best ass in the FBI.”
Her body froze. Eleven months, five days and—she did the math—twelve hours had passed since she’d heard that voice. The one she’d thought about time and again after his last brief visit to her apartment, and she still managed to be equal parts pissed off, concerned and flat-out heartbroken. That voice could only belong to one person. Thus the remark about her ass and—wow—she always knew he had a set of stones, but this was too much even for Mitch Monroe. The man she’d spent all these months trying to forget. Months of burying herself in cases, months of begging her boss for every available opportunity to keep her mind occupied, months of a busy life that didn’t allow for downtime.
Or thoughts of Mitch.
Without turning, she picked up her weapon. “Well, look what the cat dragged in. A girl puts her career on the line for you and you don’t call, you don’t write, nothing. To say the least, your technique needs work.”
And then he laughed. She’d waited months to hit him with that line and he laughed. Classic Mitch. She closed her eyes and—forget that he was a federal fugitive now wanted for murder—she’d kill him herself and be done with the whole affair.
Mitch, a murderer? She couldn’t believe it. No matter what the White House was spinning about Kemp Rodgers’ death, Mitch wouldn’t kill his friend.
Then, again, she’d been Mitch’s friend once…
Finally, she turned, bracing herself for whatever disguise might greet her, but found none. Brave.
She took in his long brown hair pulled back in a low ponytail, his dark eyes and ripped jeans, and shook her head. “You’re insane for coming here.”
He shrugged. “It’s a private range. Not like I walked into Quantico.”
It wasn’t enough that he’d almost destroyed her career when he’d first started working The Lion case, now he wanted to have a second go at it. He was a fugitive wanted for murder and she was an FBI agent. She should arrest him.
Yet, she stood waiting for him to say something that would make a damned difference. I’m sorry? I didn’t do it? Anything that would erase the idea that he could have murdered his friend.
She set her rifle on the table behind her, slid the bolt open. Not loaded. She knew it wasn’t, but she checked anyway. Always.
Mitch shuffled behind her.
Too bad. He could wait like she’d waited for him all these months.
Her canvas carry case sat on the bench seat. Like many people, she preferred canvas over hard plastic because the softer material didn’t make the rifle sweat. She dug through the case for her lens covers, popped them on, set the rifle into the case—bolt upward—and zipped it.
She’d clean the rifle later. For her, keeping a weapon in top working order meant cleaning it after every use. Even if only one shot had been fired, her weapons got cleaned. Every time.
She sensed Mitch moving closer, stirring the air around her, upsetting the energy, letting her know he was near. He had that way about him. Sometimes good, sometimes not.
“I need your help.”
Of course he did. Should have known. Radio silence for eleven months and now he wanted her help. “I should shoot you and dump your body in the Reflecting Pool.”
“Yeah, you should.”
She spun and—crack!—smacked him, sending his head sideways and making her hand sting. She’d never physically attacked anyone before and she couldn’t say it felt right or just, but unleashing it felt good. To let him know he’d hurt her. “We were friends. I helped you and you disregarded me.”
“Disregarded you?” Mitch slid a hand over his cheek. “I’ve stayed away and I’m sorry. But what, Caroline? You want to do lunch or hit the shooting range with me? A guy wanted for assaulting your boss and now a federal fugitive?” Gently, he knocked on her head. “Think about it. I was protecting you.”
She didn’t need his protection. “I’m mad at you.”
God, he was annoying. “You had a good reason to take a swing at Donaldson when he threatened you during The Lion case, but honest to God, Mitch, I think he should have swung back and ended it right there instead of trying to throw you in jail. But you should have manned up and never run from the charges, so whatever this is, I can’t help you.”
“You murdered him, too?”
Surprisingly, he blanched. “I didn’t kill anyone. I need to know what went down with Tommy.”
Oh, please. He really had lost his mind if he thought she’d touch that subject. That involved ATF and the State of New Mexico and she wasn’t about to step into that snake pit. “You better worry about what went down with Kemp Rodgers and why the White House is after you. Turn yourself in, Mitch.”
“Kemp told me the White House is buzzing about Executive Privilege being invoked on Tommy’s case. A few hours later, he’s dead. Put two and two together, Caroline. There’s a cover-up in the works and what happened to Tommy is at the heart of it.”
She faced him, still hating that he stood a good six inches taller and managed to make her feel small. She folded her arms and stepped forward, got right into his space. “No.”
“Whatever they’re concocting about Tommy is bullshit.”
“I don’t know that.”
“Yeah, you do. When we all worked together, we hung out. You knew him.”
“Not that well.”
He rolled his eyes in that typical I’m-Mitch-Monroe-and-I’m-bored way of his. “He was not dirty. Whatever he was doing, the government is letting a dead agent take the heat. Why not? He’s dead anyway. Doesn’t matter that he was a decorated officer. The government obviously needs to clean up a mess and—” he inched closer, tilted his head and stared right into her eyes “—I know all about how the government cleans up a mess.”
Back away. She should, but that would play into what he wanted. He wanted to control this conversation. His looming presence used to be enough that she’d give him that control.
Not this time.
She tilted her head the opposite direction, eased out a half-smile. “Mitch?”
She turned her back to him and scooped up her rifle case. Right now, she needed to walk away and not let him talk her into something that would wreck her career.
Cheating justice by Misty Evans and Adrienne Giordano had me hooked from page one. It had a well-developed plot with Mitch being framed for murder. At times Mitch and Caroline acted haphazardly. But their actions led to a lot of thrills and excitement as they sought answers. The progression of the story just kept me on the edge of my seat as I waited to find out who was behind the government cover up and the reasons behind it. The corruption within the agency was obvious and the pieces of the puzzle were constantly joined together. However, early on, there wasn't enough information for a predictable ending. The story was paced well. It started out slow but steady. And the pace along with the intensity of the action increased as time went on until the shocking conclusion.
Evans and Giordano presented a finely honed hero and heroine. The connection between Caroline and Mitch was unusual but entertaining as they flirted by spewing sarcastic remarks along with sexual innuendos at each other. It was the perfect depiction of a romance developing between two uptight people who weren't accustomed to showing their emotions. Caroline was a calculated sniper for the FBI. And I just loved how she put the men from her department in their place when they questioned her ability. No problem. That is until Mitch, a former FBI agent— who was a little reckless and on the run—was added into the mix and her usual astuteness went out the window.
Overall, Cheating Justice was a thrilling read that I would recommend it to fans of romantic suspense novels.
I received an e-arc from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
About the Authors