(Secrets and Lies, #1)
Author: M. M. Koenig
Genre: New Adult, Romantic Suspense
Release Date: December 19, 2013
Mia Ryan was on the path to make all her dreams come true. Her life was everything she wanted it to be; until one fateful night changed everything – leaving her broken and without direction. Nearly a year later, she still has little faith in anyone or anything. Desperate to reclaim her life’s ambition, she takes an unexpected offer that promises to solve all her problems. But as Mia moves forward, she’s faced with obstacles she couldn’t have foreseen. The biggest of them lies within the mystery of Ethan Fitzgerald; a man who affects her like no other, but who she should avoid pursuing, at all costs.
On a mission himself, Ethan Fitzgerald didn’t care who he pissed off on his road to fulfill his mother’s dying wish. He relied on himself, and was closed off to the world around him – until Mia Ryan walked through his door. Normally one to avoid messy emotions, Ethan’s world is turned upside down by Mia, and he can’t seem to get enough of her.
There are lines you can cross that will change the course of your life forever …
by M.M. Koenig
ARC Review by Pam
Pam's Rating: 4 of 5 ⭐️
Mia is feeling that her life has not purpose since she has lost all hopes of ever having a career in journalism again. Thanks to her ex-boyfriend that she was madly in love with sabotaged her work with the university paper. A chance meeting and possible prayer she has been looking for. What she doesn’t realize it she has just signed a deal with the devil…
Mia finds herself working at F. F. & Sweeney & Company but her real task is to be a mole for the paper that is planning on writing a story to take the business down. What Mia didn’t bank on when she accepted this job was the breathtakingly handsome executive Ethan Fitzgerald. From the first time she laid eyes on the man, he has caused feeling and emotions she didn’t think she would ever feel again and much more. Her plans to stay far away from Ethan slowly become harder and harder when he apparently has a different plan.
Ethan is such a mystery. He is closed off and distant when he is working and pulls off the unapproachable business man very well. It is apparent early on that he has taken notice in Mia and takes her by surprise on taking her from the office when she is having a very bad day. Slowly he starts to show her parts of him that exist outside the office which only draw her in closer. As much as Mia is falling for this man she can tell he is keeping things from her making him very dangerous to her.
When push comes to shove Mia finds herself between a rock and a hard place. Ethan or her friends. How will she proceed? If she tells him her secrets will he leave her or blow her cover? Are his feelings strong enough to forgive her for her secrets? Where will they go from here…?
I felt a strong connection with the characters from the very beginning. Mia has the ability to be a strong confident woman if she can work through her past and finally take that step forward. She is blessed with solid friendships to help her along the way with Bri, Trey, Jackson and Shane, her roommates. Ethan is so very secretive and disconnected but he seems to be honest and open when he is with Mia. I hope that he is being truthful with his feelings and not just using Mia as a pawn to get what he wants. I like the suspense of the story and found myself reading just one more chapter to see if anything happened. Before I knew it I was at the end of the book only to have to wait for more.
I can’t wait to read Complicated to see what is next for Mia and Ethan. Will they stand strong together or have the secrets of the past torn them apart? Will they get their HEA.
“Mr. Fitzgerald?” I asked tentatively.
The man nodded and pointed to the seat in front of him. He didn't seem like he wanted to be giving this interview and did not hide it. I scurried from the door to sit down.
“Ms. Ryan, I presume,” he said, keeping his head down.
He was definitely on the agitated side. His deep voice was terse.
“Yes, Mia Ryan. Thank you for your time today.”
When he looked up, it stunned me. His eyes ran along my body causing his expression to change somewhat. His scowl gradually transformed to a timid smile. His eyes didn't leave mine as his brows wrinkled as if he was trying to piece something together. I didn't have much brain space to think about what was going through his mind. I was too busy attempting to contain my own impure thoughts. My body reacted in ways that I'd never experienced on the first encounter with someone. It flamed to attention as I soaked him in. Heat rushed to my cheeks while my heart started hammering loudly in my chest. I had never felt anything this strong. It was potent.
Sweet Baby Jesus! He is beyond gorgeous!
He gave God-like and beautiful a whole new definition. His appearance rendered me speechless. His detailed body alone would be enough to reduce artists and photographers to sobs as they prayed to the heavens for such an attractive creature to be amongst them. His prior irritation seemed to be gone as he sat up in his chair. Every inch of his body was within my eyesight to devour. He raked his eyes over me every so often before bringing them into my direct eye line to linger with an inquisitive stare. Tingling sensations trekked in waves throughout me. It made the draw to him more intense.
The things his appearance is doing to me right now should be illegal.
“We interview the best, and your resume is flawless, so it should be me thanking you for your time today,” he replied.
His voice was commanding. My stomach tied into one large knot. I imagined what he sounded like in bed. A fiery burn coursed between my legs. I hastily crossed them.
Get it together Mia!
His black hair was amazing. It was short but not too short. It was a messy style almost like he ran his hands through it a few times without putting too much effort into it.
The longer hair spiked up in all the right ways. I couldn't stop staring at his face. His cheekbones were prominent with his ears and nose annoyingly perfect upon his sculpted face. He had to be at least six-foot-two, if not taller. His shoulders were broad but muscular. I was willing to bet if I unbuttoned his finely pressed dress shirt that a defined six-pack would be staring back at me with the delectable ‘V’ running deeper. It was like an unspoken message to run for the door now because this could only end in trouble. He had my body revved up. I had no doubt that he was the kind of guy that could teach a girl a thing or two in the bedroom.
Jesus, focus Mia!
I readjusted my eyes from the area that led to his pant line to his dark brown eyes. They begged you to keep staring at them so he could tell you all of life's secrets. He had one of those faces that made you want to promise every possession you own just to have a chance at kissing his luscious lips. They were full and led into dimples on each side when he smiled. So far, I'd gotten him to do that a few times.
This interview has to go fast without any challenging questions because I'm not sure I can even spell my own name right now.
Knowing I had to get my thoughts out of the gutter they currently wanted to hang out in, I straightened up and set my palms on his desk. It hit me that he paid me a compliment. Perhaps, I should say something in response instead of frothing at the mouth. “I'm honored for the consideration. It's a great opportunity,” I murmured.
He tapped his fingers together. “Your resume indicated you were studying journalism. I can't help but wonder why you would apply for a position with a finance company. It doesn't seem like an industry you'd have interest in if you were serious with your studies.”
I gulped. “I took my studies in journalism very seriously. However, I've come to realize that to succeed it is important to have a wide range of knowledge and expertise.
Since I had such a narrow focus, I wanted to expand into other areas.”
“Why do you think that this position is the best fit for you?” he questioned.
His eyes burned into me, completely unreadable. My stomach fluttered at the intensity exuding from him. I prayed my heartbeat would slow down a little. It was beating so loud that it sounded like someone was hammering a board right next to us.
“I believe it's an opportunity to learn about this industry. It offers possibilities to learn skills that will benefit me in any business,” I responded.
He cocked his head to the side. His long fingers went to his chiseled chin where they lingered above his mouth. My body temperature went up several more degrees as I watched his fingers trace his lips. It took everything in my power not to let my body stray to his and replace his fingers with my tongue.
God — focus Mia!
M. M. Koenig was born and raised in Minnesota. She now lives in the Twin Cities area with her loving dog Marley. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota with a Bachelors of Science in Sociology.
M. M. Koenig enjoys being active and has a variety of interests that coincide with her passion for life. Always one to try new things, she has acquired a variety of skills. Her sarcastic nature and multitude of experiences tend to find their way into her novels.
When she has free time and isn't writing, she spends as much time as she can with friends and family. To fuel her soul, she is constantly looking for new music, movies, and books to keep the writer's block at bay.
TWITTER HANDLE: @M_M_Koenig
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