Sunday, April 20, 2014

Her Secret, His Duty - Carla Cassidy (HRS #1796 - Apr 2014)

Series: The Adair Legacy (Book 1)

When Debra Prentice discovers she's pregnant, she knows two things are true: that she can't wait to become a mother...and that she can never reveal the father's identity to anyone. Because not only is Trey Winston her boss's son, he's also got his eye on the North Carolina senator's seat--and he doesn't need a scandal.

But when Debra must work with Trey in organizing his fund-raising dinner, the sparks from their one night of passion still sizzle. Trey knows he should stay away from Debra, but it soon becomes impossible. And as Debra's life is threatened, Trey promises to keep her--and, unknowingly, the baby she carries--safe.

Very good book, really kept me wondering what was going to happen next.  Debra has known Trey for years, as she is his mother's personal assistant.  She has been attracted to him from the time they met.  One night, after unexpectedly seeing each other at a local bar, they had a passionate encounter.  Now Debra is pregnant and she can't tell him or anyone else that he's the father.  Trey is about to start a campaign for senator and doesn't need a scandal attached to his name.  His mother, Kate, is thinking about a run for president, and Debra doesn't want to cause problems for her either.

I really liked both Debra and Trey, though there were also times I wanted to shake them both.  Debra is the daughter of a single mother who wasn't really interested in being a mother.  Her father was married and wanted nothing to do with her.  Debra was independent and driven from an early age, and has loved working for Kate Adair Winston.  When she discovers she is pregnant from that night with Trey, she is determined to protect him from the scandal her pregnancy would cause.  When Kate asks Debra to help Trey plan his fund-raising dinner to kick off his campaign, she can't say no.  Spending that much time with Trey, the sparks are not only still there, they are getting hotter.  Debra tries to keep him at a distance, knowing he needs a different kind of wife, but when she becomes the victim of several attacks his protectiveness just strengthens her love for him.  I just wish she wasn't so sure that she wasn't "good enough" to have a relationship with him.

Trey is the oldest of the three brothers and has always intended to run for office.  He is very conscious of what he needs for a successful future.  He has been dating one woman who seems to be perfect for the job of his wife.  But what he feels for her can't hold a candle to the attraction he feels for Debra.  He hasn't been able to forget that night with her and has found his desire to be with Cecily waning, though he knows she is the type of wife he needs.  Working with Debra to plan his event shows him how much he likes being with her.  The sparks are there, but he also just likes to be with her.  He starts to realize just how much she means to him when she is attacked.  He is surprised to find out about the baby, but not at all upset at the idea of being a father.  He asks her to marry him, but she turns him down.  

I got frustrated with Trey's plans to marry Cecily because she was the "right" type of woman to be his wife.  I know that his parents' marriage hadn't been the best example, but that seemed a pretty bland way to pick a partner.  I loved seeing him try to deal with his growing feelings for Debra and try to reconcile them with his future plans.  His eye opening moment was great, but if he had just told her of his feelings some of his stress might have been allayed.  

There are a couple mysteries going on in the book.  The first is who is trying to kill Debra and why.  It starts with some odd things going on in her house before escalating into physical attacks.  There seemed to be several possibilities and I admit to some surprise at the person it turned out to be.

The second one is centered around Kate Adair Winston.  Her husband had been a senator who had not been a faithful husband and created a scandal upon his death.  Kate had taken over his seat when he died and discovered a talent and love for the political process.  She went from senator to vice president and is now thinking of running for president.  At the beginning of the book we learn of a secret in her past.  There are also some questions raised by the ravings of her mother who is possibly suffering from dementia.  By the end of the book we know there is something going on, but have no idea what is behind it.  I'm looking forward to the rest of the series.

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