5* Book Review of Hard Rules by Lisa Renee Jones
Summary: Wall Street meets the Sons of Anarchy in Hard Rules, the smouldering, scorching first novel in the explosively sexy new Dirty Money series from New York Times bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones.
How bad do you want it?
The only man within the Brandon empire with a moral compass, Shane Brandon is ready to take his family’s business dealings legitimate. His reckless and ruthless brother, Derek wants to keep Brandon Enterprises cemented in lies, deceit, and corruption. But the harder Shane fights to pull the company back into the light, the darker he has to become. Then he meets Emily Stevens, a woman who not only stirs a voracious sexual need in him, but becomes the only thing anchoring him between good and evil.
Emily is consumed by Shane, pushed sexually in ways she never dreamed of, falling deeper into the all-encompassing passion that is this man. She trusts him. He trusts her, but therein lies the danger. Emily has a secret, the very thing that brought her to him in the first place, and that secret that could that destroy them both.
Title: Hard Rules
Series: Dirty Money #1
Author: Lisa Renee Jones
Publisher: St Martin's Press
Released: 9th August 2016
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: via Publisher on NetGalley
This is my first experience reading a book by Lisa Renee Jones and it definitely won’t be the last. I am hooked and cannot wait to read book two in this series, Damage Control, which is due out in February 2017. Ms Jones writing style was just awesome and the non-stop action-packed read kept me on edge until the very end. Emily and Shane are complicated characters that drew me into their lives and with all the drama going on, I was completely addicted.
Emily Stevens is twenty-seven and running from a big secret. But with a chance meeting in a coffee shop, Emily crosses paths with Shane Brandon and cannot deny their electrical connection.
Shane Brandon is determined to get his family’s empire out of the dirty circle they’ve gotten themselves into. But the problem is, his brother doesn’t really like that idea and is determined to win the votes and gain control of the empire before Shane. Their father isn’t very helpful and seems to enjoy the competitive streak his sons have, will Brandon Snr live long enough to see who the victor will be?
Shane’s coffee order is commandeered by a beautiful woman and he’s just mesmerised by her. When his phone rings though, Emily makes her escape, leaving her coffee behind. Shane takes it hostage in the hope she will return.
Seth Cage is Shane’s right-hand man and together they are making a plan to turn Brandon Enterprises legit, but Seth keeps finding evidence of dirty deals and money being hidden. Will Shane really be able to win the war that has begun between the siblings?
It seems fate has brought Shane and Emily together again. This time Shane won’t let you get away and talks her into having dinner with him. He’s desperate to spend more time with her; there’s something about her that he just can’t deny. And Emily seems to feel their connection as well. Just for one night?
"This is about tonight. Just tonight. He won't want to know my past or my future. He's looking for a diversion, and the truth is, if I spend one more night alone, trapped in guilt, worry, and my fast-looping replay of how I got to this point, I might go insane."
Will Shane and Emily share their past, their secrets? Who is Emily Stevens and what is she running from? Who can Shane truly trust? Which side is his mother and father really on? Who will win the war to control the Brandon empire? Will Emily ever be free from guilt or ever feel safe?
Hard Rules is a fabulous sizzling hot read full of intrigue and a complicated world surrounding the Brandon family. There are a lot of questions left unanswered and I definitely want the next book now to see who, what and how Shane will proceed. I love Emily and her quiet innocence, but is she truly innocent? This was a fantastic introduction into the world and I’ve added another favourite author to my list.
About the Author
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones is the author of the highly acclaimed INSIDE OUT SERIES, and has now in development for a cable television show, to be produced by Suzanne Todd (Alice in Wonderland). In addition, her Tall, Dark and Deadly series and The Secret Life of Amy Bensen series, both spent several months on a combination of the NY Times and USA Today lists.
Since beginning her publishing career in 2007, Lisa has published more than 40 books translated around the world. Booklist says that Jones suspense truly sizzles with an energy similar to FBI tales with a paranormal twist by Julie Garwood or Suzanne Brockmann.
Prior to publishing, Lisa owned multi-state staffing agency that was recognized many times by The Austin Business Journal and also praised by Dallas Women Magazine. In 1998 LRJ was listed as the #7 growing women owned business in Entrepreneur Magazine.
Picture and bio from St Martin's Griffin website