Author: Shannon Curtis
What a rollercoaster, and wow what a challenge to write a spoiler free review this is going to be.
Runaway Lies is a little bit romance and a BIG bit suspense, it was well written fast-paced and very much an exercise in misdirection.
Darcy Montgomery is on the run, trying to stay off the radar until she has to testify in a high profile court case against her former employer. She’s staying well and truly off the grid on extremely limited funds, living in the vintage VW kombi van she’s travelling in. Her whole life fits in the battered duffel bag she is never seen without.
On a quiet country road on New Year’s Eve, a road Darcy chose because it would be much less travelled, she happens upon an accident and rescues a pair of 4 year old twins from a sinking car. Unfortunately for her they are the children of property tycoon Dominic St. James who can’t sneeze without a media circus, which is going to make it very difficult for Darcy to remain out of sight.
St James is a wealthy and successful man who is receiving threatening letters at work and now someone has tried to harm his family.
Darcy is running to try and stay alive long enough to testify in court, and that is becoming more of a challenge in itself. She has been taken to the hospital with the twins after the accident and once she’s checked their welfare is desperate to escape before anyone does more than a rudimentary check of her identification.
There is no doubt about our heroine right from the start; she’s tough, she’s resilient and though everything about her life right now is out of character we can sense that she is inherently good. Circumstances have driven her to behave in ways that even she is having trouble coming to terms with.
I jumped to conclusions as soon as the driver of the car was not recovered and though I was on a similar page, I was still way off working out what was going on, which only increased my enjoyment because there was so much I just was not prepared for.
There were elements of humor as well as stomach turning graphic detail. It was disturbing, not only for the amount of danger Darcy kept finding herself in but also for the mental state of some of the characters.
Dominic and Darcy are both being targeted by different people, for totally different reasons and it was purely coincidental that their lives crossed paths so dramatically.
St. James takes the security of his family extremely seriously and Darcy saved his children so he feels he owes her, and knowing that she is living out of her car makes him more determined. He is flying the twins out to his Bowral property and Darcy is left little choice but to accept his offer; and the seclusion may help her stay off the grid long enough to make court. The security at the property is second to none so everyone should stay safe and Darcy will have a chance to heal. St. James is a canny businessman who is under no illusion that he has made enemies along the way but he is honest and fair, his staff are like family to him and you can easily see his softer side, the side that cares deeply for the people around him.
Security adviser Alex Knight comes from a law enforcement family, I’m not sure about his parents but his siblings are all involved with the law and they all end up working this case from one angle or another.
Curtis has brought together lovable characters, interesting back stories, page-turning suspense and steamy sexual tension on every page. This is one I will recommend to everyone, have to love a story that keeps you guessing.
For more info on the book and purchase links head to Harlequin Books.
Runaway Lies is book #3 for the Australian Women Writers Challenge 2015.