Everything but the Truth Review
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As a counselor, Peyton Delaney does her best to convince hookers to do something else with their lives, besides using their bodies for food and rent. But she never thought she’d have to dress like one—and employ their survival skills—in order to escape killers after witnessing a murder. When Detective Brozack, the officer assigned to protect her, is shot, he urges her to find an ex-cop named Reeve Sinclair, and he warns her not to trust anyone else. But can she trust Reeve?

When the stunning redhead in skimpy clothing shows up in his bar claiming that an old friend sent her to him for help, Sinclair thinks Brozack is playing a joke on him. However, with one phone call to his buddy, he discovers that Pepper (a name he’s sure is fake) is telling the truth—at least about needing protection.

Peyton and Reeve head to a remote cabin and await word from Brozack, each hoping that the killers are arrested sooner rather than later. Peyton wants her life back, and Reeve wants to get back to his son and the bar he owns. In the meantime, they’ll have to put up with each other.

With snappy dialogue and two amusing hit men, Everything but the Truth is a fun and entertaining romantic thriller. Still, I did find the sex scenes to be a bit too slapstick for my taste—and I couldn’t seem to stop laughing when Peyton latched onto Reeve’s ears during the throes of passion. It also seemed to happen at the wrong time in the plot, when Patricia still hasn’t confessed to Reeve that she isn’t really a hooker.

Reeve starts out as a sexy, lovable hero, but when he finds out that Peyton isn’t really a hooker, he acts like a jerk about the whole thing, and he starts treating Peyton as if she really is a hooker. He forces her to buy sexy underwear, and he makes her think that he’s expecting sex—and he won’t take no for an answer. I lost all respect for him after that.

At first, Peyton seems like a strong, independent woman—and, in her job as a counselor, she tries to empower other women to be the same way. Later, though, I began to wonder where her backbone had gone—and why she continued the hooker charade with Reeve, even after he’d saved her life and she knew that she could trust him.

Although the characters are lacking, the plot has no such flaws. Tension-filled and rousing, with a hint of humor, the plot is the highlight of the novel. And if the characters hadn’t taken a sharp left turn toward absurd, Everything but the Truth would have been a delectable, near-perfect, non-sappy romance—just the way I like them.

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