Betty Dawsey knows that breaking things off with Thom Lange is for the best. He’s nice, but boring, and their relationship has lost its spark. But steady and predictable Thom, suddenly doesn’t seem so steady and predictable when their condo explodes and she’s kidnapped by a couple of crazies claiming that Thom isn’t who he says he is.
Thom is having a hellish week. Not only is he hunting a double agent, but his fiancé dumped him, and thanks to his undercover life, she’s been kidnapped.
Turns out Thom is Operative Thom and he’s got more than a few secrets to share with Betty if he’s going to keep her alive. With both their lives on the line, their lackluster connection is suddenly replaced by an intense one. But in his line of work, feelings aren’t wanted or desired. Because feelings can be a lethal distraction.
First-person, single pov.
Not unless you've been kidnapped.
I - I just don't know where to start.
To say I finished this book feeling a big pile of wtf is an understatement and I read each chapter waiting, hoping, for something to make it all okay but just when I'm about to get over my initial issues with Thom he serves up a whopping big pile of shit that I just couldn't ignore and it left me wondering why the hell Kylie Scott thought that this would fly?
It is safe to say that Lies is an epic disappointment.
If this had been my first Kylie Scott, I'd never buy another.
I hate saying this because I usually adore Kylie Scott. She's an author I can rely on to deliver a fun contemporary romance. This? This was too ridiculous and maybe I should have known better when the book is called LIES but sweet mother Mary...
It's hard to state all my problems without spoilers, so I'm going to state the things I did like and then I'm going to list all my issues in their spoiler glory but hide them so you can read if you like.
Things I liked about Lies:
- A spunky heroine who calls Thom out on his bullshit and lays down what is and what is not acceptable with regards to his job, his need to protect her and the lies.
- Crazy supporting characters who made me laugh.
(Sadly, I must admit that I'd read follow on books about them.)
- Action! Explosions. Gunfights and over the top shenanigans.
- Thom actually really does seem to love Betty, he's just a little whacked.
- Kylie Scott has a light and fun 'voice' when writing and I enjoy it. Her writing is very good no matter what direction she takes the story in.
All the reasons this book can go do one:
Highlight between the sunflowers but be warned of spoilers!
(hee hee, apparently emoji's don't hide.)
- Thom lies to Betty for a year about who he really is, what he does for a living, and pretty much everything she thinks she knows about the guy is a lie! Even his behaviours and mannerisms when he is with her was a calculated charade! When I read the blurb, I assumed there'd be a whole load of explaining to do but I never expected him to essentially have been deceiving his fiancee with a completely contrived personality!
- Thom undertook extensive surveillance on Betty before deciding she was safe to approach romantically. By extensive surveillance, I mean he basically stalked her for a while before making his move. He then keeps up the surveillance throughout their relationship because he just wants to make sure she's safe...
- Part of his research on 'normal' relationships made Thom have sex with Betty (pre-events in lies) on average once a week and he deliberately failed to make her orgasm more often than not because research suggested that was the norm... You know, because having frequent sex with your future spouse and making it good is suspicious. She may think you're some mercenary who works for 'the good guys'. 🙄
- Thom works for some underground organisation that monitors world events and intervenes under the radar to keep things on an even keel. They're the good guys. But who are they?! They can have shoot outs in public and leave hotel rooms full of bodies with no questions because people turn out and clear it up and deal with the authorities... Yet it's essentially three wealthy people's own militia? How many people do they have in cahoots to pull this off, exactly?
I'm all for suspending belief for a good story but the organisation Thom and his cohorts work for seemed very poorly worked out and required constant suspension of belief.
I.e every time something completely implausible happened, and you wanted to scoff, you remind yourself it's fun and its fiction so just let it go. Just accepting this once isn't enough.
- HE FAKES HIS OWN DEATH AND LETS HIS FIANCEE BELIEVE HE WAS KILLED ON THEIR WEDDING DAY! This is after the kidnapping and big bad threat has mostly resolved. After Betty knows everything and they are supposed to be being honest with each other. But he does it without communicating with her because it's for the best. His enemies might continue to target her. He believes it's for the best and her opinion on the matter is irrelevant.
Oh! And as a reader, you knew he had to have faked his death because it's Kylie Scott, it's a contemporary romance, not a tragedy, so he has to be alive and you wait and wait and wait some more for him to reveal it as a lie so they can start afresh somewhere (now his enemies think he's dead) but nope... You get a funeral and grief.
- And when Betty tricks him into confirming he's alive (by making him save her because guess what folks! He wasn't going to let her know he was actually alive!) she just gives him a metaphorical smack on the nose, informs him they're back together and he's not to pull his shit again oh and by the way, they're having a baby because he knocked her up before faking his own death. WTF?! Not only did he lie, he faked his death on their wedding day, let her believe he was dead and it's all cool?!
(Okay, the him getting shot was real but the hell he put Betty through by making her think he was dead for four months?!) And more than that, his convictions on keeping Betty safe broke under her verbal dressing down, all worries forgotten? Lovely! Let's live like a happy family somewhere... But oh shit, everyone thinks I'm dead! No worries, we'll just move away and tell only your BFF and parents.
*smashes head into table*
This book just makes me feel sad. It took me four days to read it because it hurt my soul.
I hope the next one is better.