About the book
Rivers don’t let rocks hold them back. River Nightingale has decided to blow past the rocky men in her life.
She’s played by the rules for too long—especially when it came to her career as a cop. She was the top closer of cases for years, but promotions in her small town cop shop went to her less productive male counterparts. River decides it’s time to change careers. She leaves her small town to purchase a Seattle private detective agency and become her own boss.
Homicide Detective Gage Hamlin takes pride in his job; he closes cases and fosters justice. All that changed the day River Nightingale sauntered into his office. River has him questioning his pride, his cases, and his aversion to private detectives, especially beautiful private detectives.
River’s client thinks Gage got it wrong, and River is forced to prove Gage missed a murder. Will River and Gage find a way to play nice, or will River be forced to leave Gage behind?
Read an excerpt
River walked into the precinct on Fourth Street. The building buzzed with activity. She wondered why people weren’t falling over one another, given how fast they moved. Yes, she knew cop shops—she’d spent her last ten years living in one, but the little cop shop in Bear Creek, Montana was only slightly larger than this lunchroom she peeked into as she passed by. When she asked for directions to the detectives’ bullpen, the sergeant at the front desk looked her up and down, rolled his eyes, then pointed behind him and went back to a pile of paperwork.
She walked slowly by each door, reading the nameplates as she passed, until she came to the door of Homicide Detective Gage Hamlin. The office walls were glass giving her a clear view of the man sitting at his desk studying his computer. His disheveled coffee-colored hair brushed the collar of his button-down royal blue shirt. When he looked over the top of his computer screen, his sapphire-colored eyes locked on hers. River smiled and gave a cursory knock on the half-opened door.
“Detective Hamlin?” River asked.
“Yeah, last time I checked. Do we have an appointment?” Detective Hamlin asked as he grabbed his phone, and scrolled through, looking for an answer.
“No. No appointment. However, if you’re not too busy, I wonder if we could chat for a few minutes?”
Detective Hamlin smiled, rose to his feet, walked around his desk, and pulled the door open wider. He gestured for her to enter.
“Sure, I have a few minutes. How can I help you, Miss—?” He grabbed the pile of files and loose papers out of the closest chair and dumped them into the next one over.
“My name is River Nightingale. I’m a private investigator, and I’ve been hired by the Baxter family to check into their parents’ deaths.”
River watched as his sparkling eyes and dazzling smile faded from his chiseled features. This reaction would take her a while to get used to. Cops respected other cops, but they had no regard for private detectives. She had firsthand knowledge. Even the cops in her little shop in Bear Creek used to treat them like they were week-old gum stuck to the bottom of their shoes. It irritated her then and it pissed her off now. Although she wasn’t going to give Detective Hamlin the satisfaction of knowing how she felt.
“I see,” Detective Hamlin said, tight-lipped. “I’ve no idea why they would hire you. I worked the case and closed it.”
“That’s the point, Detective Hamlin. The Baxters don’t agree with your conclusion and asked me to review your findings.”
“Now wait one damn minute. Despite how many open cases are assigned to me, I’m a professional. My work is careful and thorough. On what grounds do they find my work inadequate? And you—you don’t even know what kind of hoops I have to jump through. You’re just another ambulance chaser, a clueless private dick.”
“Sorry to disappoint you, nevertheless I do know what kind of hoops you jump through. I recently left my position as an officer.”
“What? Couldn’t handle the hard work?” He scoffed.
“I thrive on hard work. I worked hard for ten years and closed more cases than all my colleagues combined. What I do have a problem with is being passed over for promotions while some yahoo, with half the closed cases and experience, gets the job. And why? Merely because he has a dick and I don’t.”
He made a grunting sound, leaned back in his chair, and crossed his arms over his chest. River stared at him, daring him to make his next nasty comment.
“The case is officially mine, meaning anything you do, anything you discover, you tell me.” He popped forward in his chair and started to punch the keys on his keyboard. “Do you want a paper copy, or should I email it to you?” he asked.
She’d let his statement slide for now. They both knew it wasn’t true. She didn’t need to keep him informed. Even so, no sense ruffling his overly irritated ego.
“My client supplied a paper copy. I would appreciate an electronic one, please.” She pulled a business card from her purse and handed it to him.
“Miss Demeanor Private Investigators.” Hamlin read out loud. “So, you purchased the old agency.”
“That’s correct. Along with three friends, who are all experienced policewomen.”
“I’ve never heard your name, and I know most of the cops in the city by face, if not name.”
“I’m not from here.”
“Huh.” He grunted as he studied her.
River quietly withstood his scrutiny. She knew exactly what this jerk was trying to do. He wanted to make her uncomfortable, test her, try to make her fidget or feel insecure. She wouldn’t give him the satisfaction.
“I’m heading over to impound right now. Nothing against your report, it’s thorough enough. All the same, I’m a hands-on type of person. I find I work better when I’m able to investigate things firsthand and reach my own conclusions. I’ll get out of your hair now. I just wanted to stop by, introduce myself, and give you a heads-up about the Baxters hiring me to work their case.”
Hamlin simply stared at her. The look on his face—priceless. She couldn’t help herself.
Forget not wanting to push his buttons. This man needed a little ruffling. River wanted to smile or stick out her tongue at him. She held her composure. The last thing she needed was to piss him off more. Like he said, the case was technically still his, closed or open, and if she wanted any chance of solving it successfully, it would be easier to have him on her side. She needed to win him over. No better time to start than the present. Her insides cringed and she bit her bottom lip to keep from groaning.
“However, if you’re free for a bit, I’d appreciate your insight,” she said as she rose from the chair.
“I can’t spare you much, but I’ll take you over to impound,” he grumbled.
A page turner. This fast paced suspenseful romance has been having me turning the pages at break neck speed.
I am so enjoyed this book. It was just a fun read with some sweet romance. No language no bedroom scenes and not alot of violence. Only one chase scene that leave River the main character a little banged up. But just enough to give Gage the incentive to step over the line and declare his love for the P.I.
The characters are fun and like a able. I love River and her fellow P.I.'s The 4 female ex-cops open a P.I. firm and hire a quirky reception. The banter with the P.I.'s is entertaining.
River is taking center stage in this one as she investigates a possible murder. And at the same time she has been hired by the victims children to look for a lost sibling.
I am enjoying every moment of this one.
I hope you'll come back for the complete review.
I can't wait to open up the next one. Will we see more of River
and Gage's growing romance. Or will another of the P.I's take center stage?
I received a complimentary copy.
My review will appear on retail sites, Good Reads and promoted on social media.
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