The Cunning Thief (Stolen Hearts#6) by Mallory Crowe-Review and Excerpt
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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date January 10, 2018
Don’t believe a word he says.
Don’t look in his eyes.
Don’t let him inside.
And whatever you do, don’t kiss him.
The next thing you know, Tristan will take everything you own. And Shae is about to find out exactly how dangerous it can be to trust the Cunning Thief.
REVIEW: THE CUNNING THIEF is the sixth instalment in Mallory Crowe’s contemporary, adult STOLEN HEARTS romantic suspense series. This is Tristan and Shae’s story line. THE CUNNING THIEF can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story line is revealed where necessary.
Told from dual third person perspectives (Tristan and Shae) THE CUNNING THIEF follows the building romance between professional thief and perpetual liar Tristan, and house flipper Shae Grant. With the recent acquisition of an older home known as Seaside Escape, on the Pete Beach Florida, Shae found herself the target of the Blackthorne Group, a questionable company with deep pockets, and an inside line with the local dirty police. Threats of intimidation and bodily harm against Shae push our heroine into a literal closet where she will come face to face with her future-a man whose lies and deceit further the conflict for our story line heroine. Enter Tristan, a professional thief and liar, and the man with whom Shae will fall in love. What ensues is the building but acrimonious relationship between Tristan and Shae; the search for the truth about the attacks against our story line heroine; and the potential fall out when their time together draws to a close.
THE CUNNING THIEF follows Tristan and Shae, along with the rest of the Hart Securities gang, led by Scott Hart and Toni Murray, as they set into motion the take down of the Blackthorne Group, and reveal the true reason behind the attacks against our story line heroine.
The relationship between Tristan and Shae is bitter and testy as they battle their attraction to one another while trying to uncover the truth. Tristan is a man of secrets who doesn’t do relationships but finding himself falling in love may threaten his future assignments with Hart Securities. The $ex scenes are limited, intimate and passionate without the use of over the top, sexually graphic language and text.
We are reintroduced to the Hart Securities Team-Scott and Toni (The Reluctant Thief #4); Hunter and Gage- Tristan’s former partners in crime; as well as Melissa Slade, first introduced in book five The Vengeful Thief. There is a story line developing between Melissa and Gage. The requisite evil has many faces including one too familiar to our story line heroine.
THE CUNNING THIEF is a quick read; a story of family and business partners; of betrayal and revenge; of secrets and lies. The premise is engaging and entertaining; the characters are charismatic and energetic; the romance is heated and frenzied. Mallory Crowe’s STOLEN HEARTS is a sexy and sassy series that you do not want to miss.
Reading Order and Previous Reviews
The Cocky Thief
The Beautiful Thief
The Dangerous Thief
The Reluctant Thief
The Vengeful Thief
The Cunning Thief
Copy supplied for review
Reviewed by Sandy
“Make it something… you’ve never told anybody else before.”
“Okay.” He took a deep breath, as he appeared to think carefully about what he would share. “I love the water.”
She reached out and playfully tapped his arm. “Come on. That’s not a secret.”
“Wait, wait. I haven’t gotten to the good part yet. When I was young, really young, I almost drowned. My dad wanted to teach me how to swim and thought the best way was just to push me off the fishing boat, no lifejacket or nothing. He thought that since it was life-and-death, I would just figure it out. Well, I didn’t. I was half dead. Lost consciousness and everything. It was only dumb luck that someone on a nearby boat saw it and jumped in after me.”
Shae didn’t know what she had expected him to reveal, but this was so much more than she’d asked for. “That’s terrible. Your dad wouldn’t come in for you when he saw you were having trouble?”
Tristan shrugged nonchalantly, as if the fact that his father almost killed him wasn’t a big deal. “I figure he still thought he was right. That eventually, I would just know how to swim and I would find my way back to the surface. The Good Samaritan got the water out of my lungs and took me to the hospital. For the next few years, I never even set foot on the beach. I did anything I could do to avoid water.”
She thought back to what he’d opened with. That he loved water. “So what changed?”
“My dad died. All he left me with was anger and resentment. I don’t know. All shit that wasn’t doing me any good then. So one summer, I rented this little cottage on a lake in Montana. Every day, I’d go in the water and wade a little bit deeper. Eventually, I was in over my head and not drowning. By the end of the summer, I could actually swim across the lake and back without any problems. So now I love the water. It’s not a bad memory for me anymore. It’s one more thing I conquered. I beat it. So there. Now you know something about me that nobody else does.”
Tristan looked down at her. The clouds must’ve parted, because the moon was suddenly bright on his face. He said the words nonchalantly, but the expression in his eyes was so different. It seemed… vulnerable. As though he were looking to her for approval. To see whether she thought his fear of the water had been ridiculous, or she was proud of his conquering it. Shae didn’t have any comforting words to give him. She and her own father seemed to be struggling throughout her entire life, but he never tried to kill her at least. Then again, Shae had never been good with words. So she decided not to say anything. Instead, she stood up on her tiptoes and pressed her lips to his. It started slow. Soft. Innocent. Tristan stayed still as her hands went up to his face, and she moved her lips against his.
At first, she thought she’d done something wrong. Maybe she’d misread this. Maybe he wasn’t really into her. Maybe she’d just gone and made a fool of herself. Right as she was about to pull away, something snapped in Tristan. He wrapped his arms around her and crushed her against his body as he finally kissed her back.
He opened his mouth over hers, and his tongue pushed inside as his hands moved along her back. One hand held still as the other found the curve of her ass through her dress and pulled her tightly against his very pronounced erection.
Shae gasped at the onslaught of sensations. She went through a mental list of the kisses she’d shared with different men, and nothing compared to this. This was desperate. This was all-consuming. She was confused, and turned on, and she never wanted it to stop. She willingly molded herself against his body and went up on her tiptoes for a better angle. One hand played with the back of his hair while the other roamed down a strong, muscular back, willing his shirt to disappear so it could be skin against skin. She’d just gotten to his waist when she felt something hard, and obviously not part of him. She pulled away with a questioning look, but he wasn’t looking at her. His attention was over her shoulder, and his expression was hard. He didn’t look like a man who had just been kissing her like she’d just been kissed. He looked focused and… angry?
“We have company,” he said.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR — Mallory Crowe is the award winning author of the Fractured Farrells series, the Bad Boys of the Underworld series and many other novels. She grew up surrounded by rescue dogs and escaping into romance books whenever possible. After trying to do the “adult” thing by getting an accounting degree and CPA license, she decided to try her hand at writing and never looked back.
An avid traveler, reader, and Netflix addict, Mallory currently lives in Michigan, with her husband and three laid-back dogs.