Hi there! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for a sexy contemporary romance from Diane Alberts, STEALING HIS HEART! This is the 2nd book in the Shillings Agency series. I loved TEMPORARILY YOURS, the first book in the series, and jumped at the chance to read the second installment.
A sexy category romance from Entangled publishing’s Brazen imprint…
Shillings Agency employee Jake Forsythe is not happy to discover that the thief who he has to track down is none other than his ex-partner from his past. Now he’s forced to blackmail her into submission…or throw her in jail.
Tara Harris steals from the rich and corrupted, returning objects to their rightful owners one case at a time. When Jake shows up in her life, at first, she’s thrilled. But then when she finds out that she has to help the man she stole from or go to jail…it’s the choice between two evils.
These two can’t deny the burning passion between them, but when push comes to shove, they’ll have to lay their hearts and their lives on the line.
Tara is the modern day catburglar equivalent of Robin Hood–she “recovers” stolen possessions, returning them to their rightful owners, for a fee. Her latest mission, however, goes astray when she’s apprehended at the scene by a private security agent–Jake Forsythe. Tara and Jake have history–they were childhood sweethearts/theft partners–at least until Jake left her unfulfilled on his last night before reporting to basic training. Since then, Tara’s been on her own, and doing quite well.
Jake is a shell of a man. Wounded in battle, and scorned by his fiance, he’s sure no woman will ever feel for him again–so he won’t allow anyone close. Especially not Tara. She had gotten in before, and he’s never quite forgotten her, but he won’t let his attraction get in the way of his job. He has to figure out how she was able to get past his security protocol to steal a precious vase, and if she doesn’t? Prison.
Thing is, neither Jake nor Tara can deal with this reunion. Tara hasn’t had a steady lover in all the years Jake’s been gone, and Jake hasn’t been with a woman in more than a year. The passion they ignite is both fiery and familiar, with Tara’s shenanigans thawing the ice in Jake’s heart until all he can imagine is the life he could have had, should have had, if only he wasn’t battle worn and scarred.
But, Tara is strong, stalwart and crafty. She knows Jake will turn her in if she doesn’t comply–and yet she doesn’t hold back on her affection. She won’t give up her secrets, but she’s not going away without getting what she also wants: to see Jake laugh with abandon before she’s rotting in a jail cell.
I really loved Tara. She was funny, and fearless. Her heart was so open and she held her convictions so tight–there was no way she was sharing any secrets that would benefit a gangster, even if he was Jake’s client. Jake, too, was stubborn, unwilling to send Tara to jail, but caught in the need to do his job–even after recognizing his client was a bad dude.
I had a hard time warming to Jake. At points he was really intriguing, but his control freak nature was…too much, perhaps. I found him much more interesting once Tara started breaking through his walls. Partly, at fault was Tara’s innate stubbornness; Jake knew that he’d never get Tara to reveal her thieving secrets and had to really push to make her give it up–even if it totally pushed her away–knowing it was the only way to save her.
I appreciated having some input from Cooper Shillings, of TEMPORARILY YOURS, in here. His sound advice helped put these two double-crossed lovers back on collision course. Some nice smexytimes, and a solid, if darker, romance in the series.
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Diane Alberts is a multi-published, bestselling contemporary romance author with Entangled Publishing. She also writes New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling new adult books under the name Jen McLaughlin. She’s hit the Top 100 lists on Amazon and Barnes and Noble numerous times with numerous titles. She was mentioned in Forbes alongside E. L. James as one of the breakout independent authors to dominate the bestselling lists. Diane is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.
Diane has always been a dreamer with a vivid imagination, but it wasn’t until 2011 that she put her pen where her brain was, and became a published author. Since receiving her first contract offer, she has yet to stop writing. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, and a cat. Her goal is to write so many fantastic stories that even a non-romance reader will know her name.