Thursday, May 21, 2015

Exposed (Ethan Frost #3) by Tracy Wolff

Displaying Exposed.jpgEthan Frost, the irresistible leading man from the New York Times bestsellers Ruined and Addicted, returns once again in Exposed—a novel that’s perfect for fans of J. Kenner and Sylvia Day.

Will Ethan Frost go too far for the woman he loves?

The moment Chloe Girard walked into my life, she exposed secrets and emotions I always thought were best kept buried.

She wants to move on, to ignore the past. But I can’t do that. Not when she still suffers. And not when the man who hurt her remains unscathed. So when I discover the perfect opportunity to make him pay for what he did to Chloe, I can’t walk away, no matter the consequences.

Displaying Exposed.jpegBut there’s a fine line between justice and obsession. As I turn up old crimes and new lies, I know that I’m playing with fire—and risking the very foundations of our relationship.


My love for Chloe is absolute. I just hope it’s enough to save us both.

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Excerpt

I wait for Sebastian to say something, but he doesn’t. Instead, he just settles back into his chair. Watches. Waits. He’s good at that. Good at gathering all the facts before making a decision. It’s part of the reason I’m here. He’s also loyal as fuck. Another reason I’m here. And he knows me better than just about anyone, even Chloe.

Which is the only reason I’m okay showing him my weakness here. Because he already sees it. Just like I see his.

“I can’t fucking sleep,” I finally tell him, staring down into my empty glass and wishing for a little more scotch to make confession time go more easily. “Can’t fucking breathe. All I can do is think about what he did to her. About how he raped her and then shoved her out of the car onto the street like she was garbage. Like she was nothing.

“And she’s not the only one he did that to.” Because I’m clenching my hand so tightly I’m afraid I’ll break the glass I’m holding, I slam it down onto the coffee table between us. The sharp crack it makes when it hits echoes through the room like a shot. “He just turned twenty-five.

He’s running for fucking Congress. It’s his first step toward the White House and there’s a damn good chance he’s going to win the seat. He’s a fucking rapist and he’s going to be a fucking member of the House of Representatives. Give it a few years and then he’ll be a senator and then who the fuck knows? President?

“The thought makes me fucking sick, Sebastian. Chloe still has nightmares about what he did to her and that bastard is going to get a seat in Congress? Over my dead body. Over my dead, fucking body.”

I probably sound like a crazy man, but I can’t help it. Shit, this is Chloe I’m talking about.

This is my woman who’s been hurt—and the fact that I unwittingly played a part in it? It makes my skin crawl.

Sebastian must get it, though, because instead of commenting on the fact that I seem a little unhinged, he just watches me over the rim of his scotch as he takes another sip. And then he asks, “So what’s the plan?”

“The plan?” I echo, not because I don’t have one but because—despite the fact that we’ve been friends since we were eighteen-year-old college roommates—I expected more questions from him. A little bit of doubt, maybe.

But there is no doubt. There’s nothing but support and assurance in his gaze when he clarifies, “What are we going to do about it?”

That loyalty, that absolute I’ve-got-your-back attitude is part of the reason I’m here. Because he’s always had my back, just like I’ve always had his.

“We’re going to ruin him,” I tell him, determined that he knows exactly what he’s getting into with this. “I can’t send him to jail—at least not for raping Chloe. Not with the ironclad NDA she’s signed. But I’ve been digging and the son of a bitch has been playing fast and loose with the law since before he was legal. He’s a rapist and a thief and a dealer—and that’s just what I know about so far. There’s no way he’s winning that election. No fucking way.”

“What does Vegas have to do with any of that?” Sebastian asks. “Because you could have filled me in on this over the phone.”

This is where it gets tricky. Not because I think he’ll chicken out, but because I know what I have to say next will enrage him. But it has to be said . . . and dealt with. “He’s got his fingers—and his trust fund—in a bunch of different pies here. Anthony Zanetti. Gabriel Santini.” I look at him and wait for him to connect the dots.

“Nico Valducci.” He says the name I didn’t want to. “My father’s been in bed with him for years.”

“Yeah, I know. I was hoping to talk to your dad while we were here, get some information from him, but it looks like you’re in charge now.”

“I am. And I have a meeting set up with Nico early next week. To discuss the fact that I’m not as amenable to organized crime in my casino as my father has always been.”

“Do you.” He’s got me thinking now. We’ve got to handle this carefully if we don’t want blowback from the mob—which I definitely don’t, for Chloe’s and Sebastian’s sakes—and I can totally see a couple avenues we can exploit, if we’re careful. And if we don’t mind getting our hands a little dirty.

Normally, I’m not a guy who likes to mess with that. I’ve made it my life’s mission to run a transparent corporation, one that takes care of its employees and the world and does a lot more good than harm. After all, my world is pretty black and white, good and bad—or it always has been until now. I’ve always tried to be on the right side of the line, have always kept my business on that line as well.

But this is about Chloe and what was done to her. There isn’t much I wouldn’t do to avenge her. And there isn’t much I wouldn’t do to stop the despicable excuse for a human being that is my brother from getting the kind of power that would let him hurt more people with impunity. To bring him down and guarantee Chloe’s emotional security? I’ll get my hands dirty for that. And I probably won’t even feel bad afterward.

Though Sebastian hasn’t said anything else, I can all but see the wheels turning in his head.

So I ask, “What are you thinking?”
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What did I think?

I'm still at a loss for words; book one ended with such an OMG moment and in book two after a few too many downs, things are looking up. Book three picks ups exactly where book two left off and this time Ethan is going after baby bro Brandon, not just for Chloe, but for everyone he's ever hurt. If you thought the previous books were good, you will flip when you read this one. A little side note, do you remember Sebastian and Aria from Play Me, well they make an appearance in this one. YAY Crossovers!  The most dramatic moment in this book will have you screaming finally and I'm just gonna throw this out there but I never thought it was possible to hate Ethan's mom any more than I already did from the previous books.

I know we are promised a fourth book in this gripping series, but honestly, the ending in this one was just absolutely perfect. Things finally look really good for Ethan and Chloe that I'm afraid of what the next book holds in store. Just when you think this story can't get any better it does, Ms. Wolff really knows how to write incredible stories that keep you flipping the pages like there is no tomorrow.

Rating 5 out of 5
Read@Book
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Author Info

Displaying Tracy.jpgTracy Wolff collects books, English degrees and lipsticks and has been known to forget where—and sometimes who—she is when immersed in a great novel. At six she wrote her first short story—something with a rainbow and a prince—and at seven she forayed into the wonderful world of girls lit with her first Judy Blume novel. By ten she’d read everything in the young adult and classics sections of her local bookstore, so in desperation her mom started her on romance novels. And from the first page of the first book, Tracy knew she’d found her life-long love. Now an English professor at her local community college, she writes romances that run the gamut from contemporary to paranormal to erotic suspense.

Author Links:  Website |Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads