Friday, February 25, 2022

Secrets (Brantley Walker: Off the Books #6) by Nicole Edwards ~ Book Review with Excerpt


The members of the Off the Books Task Force are nearing their one-year anniversary, and while they’ve closed several cases, it hasn’t been easy. Despite the fact the governor disbanded the team, they are thriving under the umbrella of Sniper 1 Security. Now that they work in the private sector, there are new tasks that must be tackled, like bringing on new members.

Even as they work to broaden their reach, there are still cases to be worked. When a partner in an investment firm goes missing, Governor Greenwood reaches out for their assistance and the team uses their combined skills to unravel the mystery that surrounds his disappearance.

Not only do secrets emerge where the case is concerned, many more are brought to light within the team.

Excerpt from Secrets

Brantley Walker woke up on Friday morning with renewed energy. It was the first time in months when he hadn’t had a restless night. One without a headache or a nightmare, both of which always left him feeling off come morning. The migraines had been extra brutal these past couple of months, knocking him to his knees at least three days a week, so the fact he’d been headache free last night, sleeping soundly, had made all the difference. No nightmare, no headache, just rest after a round of amazing sex with the man he loved. It was almost like, for the first time since that fateful day when the world had literally crashed down on him, he was living a normal life. Normal. Huh. Not something he would’ve ever considered himself. As a Navy SEAL, normal didn’t apply. And while his career in the military had officially ended, he hadn’t exactly left the excitement behind him. With a sigh, he pushed himself up, rubbed the subtle ache in his leg, grateful it hadn’t gotten any worse in recent months. Maybe he risked jinxing himself, but Brantley was not going to question his good mood or look to closely into what spurred it. Especially since he knew what the day was going to bring. Now that Sniper 1 Security had officially absorbed the Off the Books Task Force and they were up and running relatively smoothly, they’d spent the past two weeks working to fill the vacant positions they’d been outlining for the past six months. Today they would finalize all their efforts, which meant they could finally push forward rather than continue to move in circles. After making a pitstop in the bathroom to take care of morning business, Brantley returned wearing a pair of shorts and a T-shirt, socks on his feet. He sat on the edge of the bed, shoes in hand to finish getting ready for his run while the man who’d rocked his world last night slept soundly on the other side. Looked like he was going to have to be a little more aggressive to get Tavoularis out of bed this morning. “Today’s gonna be a good day,” he said aloud, pulling on his shoes. “Did you say somethin’?” Reese grumbled, snuggled beneath the navy-blue suede comforter that had just appeared out of nowhere one day last week. “Time to get up,” he told the grouchy man. Reese’s response was a grunt. Brantley glanced over his shoulder, then patted the mattress, urging Tesha to hop up there. If anyone could get Reese out of bed, it was the man’s canine partner. “I tried,” he told the dog with a shrug. “Now it’s your turn. You wanna go for a run, you gotta wake him up.” Tesha’s excitement came in the form of a full body wag and the little hop she started around Reese’s legs. No way could Reese sleep through that. “Better get up,” Brantley told him. “She’s gonna be pissed if you don’t come with us.” Another grumble, but at least Reese stirred enough to sit up, his long legs swinging over the edge of the bed, bare feet smacking the hardwood. “You have somethin’ against sleepin’ in?” Brantley knew it was rhetorical, but still it made him laugh. “I’m leavin’ in five,” Brantley said on the way to the door. Reese muttered something he couldn’t understand but he laughed as he strolled out of the bedroom. Sure enough, just shy of the allotted time, Reese appeared in the kitchen. He’d pulled on shorts and a T-shirt, shoes on his feet. He still looked half asleep, but Brantley intended to fix that with ten miles pounding pavement on a warm September morning. “I hope you know, I was gonna seduce you,” Reese complained, falling into step with him on the way to the front door. “Next on the agenda,” he promised. “Like hell. After this, I’m goin’ back to bed.” “We can do it in bed,” he quipped. “Wherever you like. But right now…” Brantley opened the door, stepped outside. “Son of a bitch.” Reese glared at him. “Why the hell didn’t you tell me it was rainin’?” More like drizzle. Or maybe just the ridiculous humidity that’d been blanketing Coyote Ridge for the past couple of months. Brantley smiled. “Where’s the fun in that?” Less than a minute later, Reese was at his side cursing him, Tesha trotting along in front, tail wagging. Damn fine way to start a Friday. When they returned to the house nearly an hour later, Brantley was feeling even better than when they’d left. His heart was pumping strong and the fresh air had cleared his mind. “Not your best pace,” Reese said when they walked into the house. Brantley peered over, barked a laugh. “Maybe that was because I was keepin’ your pace.” He found himself smiling wider when Reese glared at him as he made a beeline for the refrigerator. Brantley was ready when Reese tossed him a bottle of water, catching it with one hand while he admired the man. The good news was, the sleep had worn off and in its place, a grumbling man desperately in need of a shower. Exactly where Brantley hoped to have him in the very near future. “You want breakfast?” Reese offered, tossing his empty bottle into the recycle bin—something else that had just miraculously appeared in the house recently. “Not right this second, I mean. But before—” “Shower first,” he interrupted, finishing off his own water and pitching the empty into the allocated bin. Reese turned back to the refrigerator, opened it. “I’ll wait ’til you’re done.” Brantley turned and started walking backward, grinned again. “The hell you will. You are gonna join me in the shower, Tavoularis. Right. Fucking. Now.” Reese peered around the refrigerator door. “I’ll make breakfast.” “Keep up with the excuses and I’ll make you work for it.” “Work for what?” Reese groused. “Get your ass in the shower,” he commanded, still smiling. “Now.” Reese finally gave up, stomping in the direction of the bathroom. “Anyone ever tell you you’re too damn chipper in the mornin’?” “It’s gonna be a good day.” “So you keep sayin’.” Once they were in the bathroom, Brantley figured it was time for less talk, more action. After turning the water on, ensuring it wasn’t too cold and not too hot, he then began stripping his clothes off, piece by piece. He knew Reese was still sulking near the sink, but he figured that wouldn’t last much longer. If he knew anything about Reese Tavoularis at all, he knew the man couldn’t resist him when he was naked.

OMG all the SECRETS!!!

There is a case that the OTB Task Force is assigned, they need to find a missing person and time is of the essence since his two partners have recently been found dead. So it's all hands on deck and it's a good thing that Brantley and Reese just hired some new people to join the task force because they are going to need everyone's help to find him before he finds the same fate as his partners did.

But will the secrets get in the way or will OTB be able to uncover everything in time? And if you think those are the only secrets you are oh sooooo wrong!

So many things come to light in this 6th book of Brantley Walker: Off the Books Series, so may surprise you, some might not, but there is one thing that will shock the socks right off of you so be prepared.

If you enjoy Office Romances, MM Romances, Contemporary Romances or Romantic Suspense reads with tons of heat I would highly recommend this book to you.

Happy Reading!!!

About the Author:

Nicole lives in Texas with her husband and their youngest of 3 children. The two older ones have ventured out in the world on their own. She has a beautiful granddaugther and a rather spoiled grand-puppy.. Oh, she and Colt  also have four dogs. Most of the time, you can find her hiding in my writing cave. If she's not there, she's probably hanging out with the family, reading, or watching hockey and football. One thing for sure... Nicole is always trying to have fun. 

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*Book Teaser and Excerpt are property of Nicole Edwards

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