Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Secrets and Lies But No Videotape

Shhhh! Can you keep a secret? Well there's lot of secrets, lies, politicians and blackmail pictures but no videotape in Our Little Secret by Starr Ambrose.

The Not So Secret Weekly Results
♥♥♥ 1/2
Pages read 356
Riding Time 3hours 17 minutes
Calories Burned 1,360
Distance Peddled 68.47 miles

For My Thoughts

Starr Ambrose's debut novel Lie to Me was one of my favorite reads in 2008. It was funny and well written, had great characters and was an easy, quick read so when I saw Our Little Secret was available, I was really looking forward to reading it for this week's Read-n-Ride challenge.

Welcome to the live styles of the rich and famous in D.C. where mistaken identities, blackmail, corruption, foreign dignitaries and politicians are the order of the day. Mmmmm sounds just like every other regular day in Washington. The only thing missing was Chris Matthews from MSNBC's Hardball.

Identical twin sisters Lauren and Meg Sutherland couldn't be more different. Where Lauren is the responsible, reliable, practical twin, engaged to an equally boring man, Meg is promiscuous, lives life on the wild side and is now newly married to her boss and a man twice her age US congressman Harlan Creighton. And it turns out instead of enjoying wedded bliss and a honeymoon get-away, the newlyweds are in fact M.I.A. and on the run.

With her sister missing, Lauren Sutherland hightails it to Washington D.C. where the first person she encounters is Drew Creighton, ski instructor and son of the missing congressman. Drew immediately mistakes Lauren for her twin sister and thinks she's a gold-digging hussy interested only in his father's wealth and power. The sparks immediately fly between Drew and Lauren with a close call involving a hair pulling incident and a well-placed kick to the shin (I'll let you figure out who did what).

Since Lauren was an engaged woman at the start of the book, I was interested to see how Ambrose would develop the relationship between Drew and Lauren. Turns out Jeff the fiancé was a bit of a dud and I could see why Lauren would dump his ass in favor of the gorgeous, irresistible ski bum...or someone she thinks is a ski bum. You know what happens when you ass-u-me and both are guilty of jumping to the wrong conclusions about each other.

As Drew and Lauren put their amateur detective skills to work, they are actually a good team once they get past their initial misunderstandings (ohh and Lauren dumps the BF), then the hot and steamy action really heats up between them. But they've got a job to do as they dodge bullets, an attempted kidnapping (Drew's not the only one who mistakes Lauren for her twin sister), and car chases while trying to figure out the good guys from the bad.

At this point the suspense plot involving the political blackmail plot, doctored pictures, secret service agents and foreign nationals was a bit long winded and tedious and I was ready for it to be over. To Lauren's credit she was surprisingly strong and smart and really held it together at the end when she was faced with some uncomfortable circumstances.

Our Little Secrets had it's moments with funny clever writing, some madcap adventure and great chemistry between Drew and Lauren. Although I enjoyed the story, it wasn't in the same league for me as Lie to Me and as is sometimes the case, I think it suffers from the sophomore jinx.

Back Cover Blurb

Lauren Sutherland tries to set a good example for her twin sister, from her practical job to her dependable, if boring, fiancé. So when impulsive Meg elopes with her boss, a U.S. senator twice her age, Lauren hops on a plane to talk her into an annulment...but comes face-to-face with the senator's handsome son, Drew, instead.

Demanding to know what she's done with his father, Drew is as infuriating as he is annoyingly irresistible. But he's not the only one who mistakes Lauren's identity. A relentless foe is on a deadly hunt for the missing newlyweds -- unless Lauren and Drew can find them first.

Venturing into the elite Washington social scene, they discover an elaborate web of explicit photos and blackmail, but the biggest surprise is the fiery attraction they can barely control. The clock is ticking, and while the sparks between Lauren and Drew burn hot, the trail of clues is growing cold....

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