Friday, August 11, 2017

REVIEW TOUR: BENEATH THE TRUTH by MEGHAN MARCH
















Title: Beneath The Truth
Author: Meghan March
Series: Beneath #7
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Format: eARC
Pages: 350
Published: August 8, 2017
Publisher: Red Dress Press
Source: Author via Inkslinger PR
Reading Challenge: 2017 New Release
COYER,

From USA Today bestselling author Meghan March comes the final sexy standalone set in the Beneath world of New Orleans.

I used to believe there were lines in life you don't cross.
Don't lie. Don't cheat. Don't steal.
Until I learned people don't always practice what they preach.
I turned in my badge and gun and walked away from everything.
Then I got the call no one wants, and I’m back in New Orleans.
What I don't expect is for her to be here too.
Another line you don’t cross?
Don't touch your best friend’s little sister.
She's always been off-limits.
Too bad I don't follow the rules anymore.

***May absolutely be read as a standalone!



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I remember when I read my first Meghan March book, which was the first book in the Beneath series, I was blown away.  Since that time every opportunity that arose for me to read her work I jumped on it with enthusiasm and Beneath the Truth was no exception. This is the final book in the Beneath series and it can be read as a stand-alone.

What the story is about.

This is Rhett Hennessey and Ariel Sampson’s story.  All his life the one thing that Rhett wanted to be was a police officer. A job he carried out with passion and sincerity.  However, events transpired that led to him giving his beloved career and leaving the city he called home. However, tragedy struck, and he was forced to return to the place where it all started. The one thing he never counted on was coming face to face with the one woman who ever touched his heart. The woman who, was off limits due to her relationship to his best friend. However, he would come to learn that things are not always black and white and sometimes rules had to be broken. 

The Story
This book had all the elements to keep me entertained. A strong and beautiful romance, suspense, mystery, drama topped off with some sizzling love scenes. From the start of the story, readers are plunged into a world that was riddled with danger and corruption.  Rhett finds himself caught up in the middle of the chaos and is in a race against time to protect the woman he loves.
I enjoyed the romance between Rhett and Ariel, which I thought was beautifully written. They both had a crush on each other when they were teenagers. Rhett knew of Ariel’s feelings, but she had no idea he felt the same way. Now they are all grown up the opportunity came for them to explore their feelings. Man, did they explore them. The intimate scenes were scorching and tastefully written. The romance was not a slow burn one, but under the circumstances, I believe it was fitting.
The suspense and mystery kept me on my toes.  I eagerly turned the pages as the author piqued my curiosity with the plot twists.  I never expected the story to take that angle.  Rhett and Ariel came to the realisation that things are not as they appear on the surface. They learnt that the person closest to them has the power to betray them, which proved a bitter pill to swallow.

The Characters

Rhett is a man of honour, loyalty and respect, traits I find admirable.  Therefore, his reactions to the events from his past were understandable. What I liked most about him, was his protective nature.  His return to New Orleans taught him some valuable lessons. Lessons, which led to him, pursuing the things that brought value to his life.
A strong and intelligent female lead fascinates me and Ariel was one such character. Growing up she was considered a geek, now as adult she was wealthy woman. Here ability to solve mathematical and computer problems led to her becoming the CEO of her own company. I admired her humility, her caring nature, her assertiveness and her sassiness. Hidden beneath these layers was a shy but courageous woman. Things happened that scared her, but she did run and hide; instead, she stood up and fought.
I enjoyed their interaction, and loved how well they related to each other. The fact that they were both willing to risk all to protect each other spoke volumes.

Recommendation/Conclusion

I enjoyed everything that this instalment had to offer.  The characters, the romance, the suspense, the mystery and the themes, which were highlighted. I loved the epilogue, which provided a brief update of the characters from each installment. This was a fitting end to what I consider an awesome series.

There are two books in the series, which I have not read but this oversight will be rectified.  I cannot wait to see what next Meghan March has in her repertoire.




EXCERPT
Wham. My heart slammed against my ribs as it sped up about twenty beats per minute.

The heat and delicious woodsy citrus scent radiating from his body did good things to me. Things that made me want to do very bad things to him. I wasn’t a seventeen-year-old virgin anymore. I knew my way around a man, but I had to admit, the hipsters in Cali had nothing on a homegrown Louisiana man like Rhett.

When he spoke, he leaned in so close that I could feel his breath on my ear. “You missed that shot on purpose.”
My gaze jumped from the sexy five o’clock shadow shading his jaw to his piercing green eyes.
“Wha-what are you talking about?” I smacked myself mentally when my old stammer kicked in. Of course he would cause it.
“That shot. You missed on purpose. I saw you adjust at the last minute. Why?”
I swallowed the saliva pooling in my mouth and decided to take the safest exit from this situation. Lying.
“Cue slipped.”

His eyes narrowed on me. “You’re lying and you’re terrible at it, just like you’ve always been.” He reached up and pressed his thumb to my left eyebrow. “You get a twitch right here.”
Oh my God. Rhett Hennessy is touching me. And what’s more . . . he knows my tell. He noticed me!

The fifteen-year-old inside me did a terrible cartwheel at the realization. Okay, more of a round-off. With a tumble in the grass to finish. Whatever.
But outwardly, I was trapped in that green gaze until he decided to let me go—or until I came to my senses.
I cleared my throat and sidestepped him. “Whatever you say, hotshot. I need another drink.”

Focusing on putting one four-inch heel in front of the other without biting it, I escaped to the table and reached for the whiskey glass I’d left behind, interrupting my brother and the waitress. They both stared at me as I chugged the contents.
I’d always wondered what it would feel like to have Rhett’s attention, and now I knew. In a word, it was . . . unnerving.

“How’s the game going?” my brother asked.
“Fine.” Keeping my answer short meant he couldn’t tell that I was lying. Heath wasn’t nearly as observant as Rhett.
“You winning?”
Thanking the Lord that Heath obviously hadn’t been watching, I shrugged. “I guess.”
He glanced toward Rhett and then back to me. “The sister I know and love doesn’t lose at pool. Ever. Even to Rhett Hennessy.”
I lowered the glass to the table and straightened my shoulders. “Like they say, things change.”
He nodded slowly. “That may be true about most things, Flounder. But you’re a pool shark and we both know it.”

Before I could respond, Heath’s attention jumped back to the waitress. I took another ten seconds to gather myself, also known as drinking offensively in my mind, before I crossed the floor to face off against my former obsession.
“You all right, Red?” Rhett asked.
“Don’t call me that. And I’ve never been better.”
His gaze dipped to my feet and dragged up my body. “I can agree with that statement.”

Whoa. Who is this guy with the innuendo? A glance at his empty whiskey glass told me he was drinking heavily as well. Was this the booze talking? Or was Rhett Hennessy not just noticing me, but noticing me?
Either way, I had to play it cool. Or at least pretend to play it cool, since it seemed I might fall short.
“Your turn, hotshot. Better not miss, because I’ll clear the table next time,” I said, but my cocky attitude backfired.

Rhett didn’t miss. He sank his balls and then the eight, ending the game almost as quickly as it started. He returned his cue to the rack and turned to face me, all traces of the earlier heat banked, his expression shuttered.

“Game over.”
What the hell just happened?








ABOUT THE AUTHOR


meghanmarchpic
Meghan March has been known to wear camo face paint and tromp around in woods wearing mud-covered boots, all while sporting a perfect manicure. 

She's also impulsive, easily entertained, and absolutely unapologetic about the fact that she loves to read and write smut. 

Her past lives include slinging auto parts, selling lingerie, making custom jewelry, and practicing corporate law. 

Writing books about dirty talking alpha males and the strong, sassy women who bring them to their knees is by far the most fabulous job she's ever had.

She loves hearing from her readers at meghanmarchbooks@gmail.com.


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