Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
Series: A Murder in Texas #2
Title: Stranger in My House by Mari Manning
Author: Mari Manning
Publisher: Entangled Select Suspense, Entangled Publishing
Date of Publication: June 13th, 2016
When Kirby Swallow assumes her half sister’s identity to help figure out who’s threatening her, she finds herself in way over her head. On the remote Texas ranch her sister calls home, she confronts a growing list of suspects and a rising body count—all while wearing her sister’s 4-inch heels. The only problem is the sexy ranch manager, Seth Maguire, is starting to catch on to the charade. The attraction between them is undeniable—and soon, what starts out as just a one-night stand, turns into something much deeper. But someone on the ranch is out for blood…and Kirby’s next.
This is a suspense filled murder mystery – with danger lurking everywhere!
Kirby Swallow has been brought up by her Grandfather and is feeling somewhat alone after his recent demise. When her near identical half sister, Frances (better known as Frankie) comes calling, battered and bruised asking for her help, Kirby will put her own life on the line to help her. Kirby is a hard working, considerate and lonely cop whilst Frankie is a spoilt, selfish brat with very loose morals but now seems genuinely scared and very concerned after the disappearance of her mother and being attacked herself. Kirby can’t resist and agrees to wear green contact lenses to hide her brown eyes – the only physical difference between the sisters – and to go undercover as Frankie on the isolated ranch where she lives. Trying to act like Frankie, wearing her ridiculously high heels and striving to uncover the truth is going to be a real challenge for Kirby. What will make it harder is the attitude of others on the ranch to Frankie – no one seems to like or trust her. With so many potential suspects, her aunt still missing and more mysteries to resolve life is taking a definite change for Kirby – and the attractive ranch manager, Seth Maguire, could just be one challenge too many for her to ignore!
With family feuds, everyone in the household apparently hating Frankie, the ranch going downhill fast after all the cattle and most of the horses have been sold, nothing is as Kirby had assumed. Get ready to meet some great characters – human and animal! There are so many secrets, motives and conflicts abounding that this is an exciting read with so many twists and turns it will keep you guessing till near the end! This is a great romantic mystery to escape into and I have no hesitation in highly recommending it to lovers of this genre.
Thanks to the author, publishers and NetGalley, too, for letting me read this in exchange for my honest review.
An Excerpt to whet your appetite:
He guided Darcy into the wide path of grass and clover between the lavender fields. Frankie fell into step beside him, and a deeply irrational sense of well-being washed over him. Miss Bea had skinned him alive twice in one morning. A new record. A new low.
So why the hell was he feeling so mellow?
The scent of lavender floated in the warm air. The grayish-purple wands dipped and rolled like waves. Frankie took a deep, noisy sniff. “Hmm. Smells good.”
“Must have been hard for you when my cousin sold the cattle and took up farming.”
He glanced at her, expecting to see mocking, catlike eyes, but instead he was met with curiosity. Or was it interest? “I guess. Not exactly what I expected when I came here.”
“What did you expect?”
He shrugged. What did she think he’d expected? “A working ranch. A herd of steers from here to the horizon. Beefsteak for dinner. Whiskey for dessert.”
She burst out laughing, and he almost laughed, too. A comfortable silence settled over them, and he slipped back a pace so he could study the new Frankie. Her cat eyes didn’t seem so damned spooky this morning. His gaze lingered on strong cheekbones, golden skin, the gentle puff of pink lips. A breeze lifted. Long, black hair unfurled, gleaming like jet.
This girl couldn’t be Frankie. It wasn’t just the horse business. It was the way she acted, asking questions all the time and looking startled when Miss Bea went off on her. Sure, she knew a lot about the house and him and the workings of the ranch. And sometimes she’d tilt her head just like Frankie and do Frankie’s Beyoncé strut, but not all the time.
So if she looked like Frankie and talked like Frankie and knew about Frankie’s life, but wasn’t Frankie, who the hell was she? Besides Frankie’s doppelgänger. He should be alarmed, wary even. But instead he felt as if he’d finally turned a corner.
Let’s start with the fun stuff. I love small towns, mysteries, quiet men, laughter, old-fashioned spaghetti dinners. I love boots and shopping and jokes and Hershey’s dark chocolate and white wine. I love lots of things. But my first love is reading.
I love to read. Just about anything, but it has to be well-written. I go through periods where I am into historical novels or romance or mystery or history or biography. I never know when my desires will suddenly change.
Now for the writer-ish, official stuff: Mari Manning is the author of several contemporary romances and three romantic suspense novels set in the Texas Hill Country. Stranger at My Door is the first in her A Murder in Teas series. The second, Stranger in My House will be released by Entangled on June 13. The third book in the series is Stranger in My Bed. Currently Mari is working on a series of cozy mysteries.
She and her husband live in Chicago.
Author Website: http://www.marimanning.com/
Author Blog: https://marimanning.com/my-blog/
Author Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/mari_manning
Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/marimanning.author
Many thanks to Entangled Publishing for providing the materials for this tour and an ARC of the novel in exchange for my honest review (included in this post and posted originally on release day for this novel).
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