Publication Date: November 24th 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Disclaimer: I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book. All opinions stated are solely mine.
IN HOT PURSUIT
Being a cop might be in Anthony Moretti’s blood, but protecting and serving the city of New York has always been more than just the family business. If that means his love life stays locked up, well then that’s just another sacrifice made in the line of duty. That is, until he sets eyes on the gorgeous new waitress at The Darby Diner and suddenly Anthony’s morning coffee is leaving him a whole lot more hot and bothered than usual.
Though waitressing at The Darby isn’t exactly Maggie Walker’s dream job, it pays the bills and gives her time to work on her novel. Now if only she could stop fantasizing about gorgeous Anthony Moretti every time he sits down at her table, she’d really be in great shape. But when he needs her help identifying a criminal threatening The Darby—and Maggie recognizes her ex-husband—she fears her fresh start might be a pipe dream. Faster than a New York minute, Maggie and Anthony find themselves in one perilous pursuit that only gets hotter with each and every rule-breaking kiss.
I know that I always start out a review of any Lauren Layne book by gushing about her writing, but it never gets old! She always brings something fresh and new to each book.
Being a cop is the family business but Anthony Moretti has bigger dreams than being a mere cop. He’s got his eye on the highest office within the NYPD and he’s willing to give up everything else, even relationships, in his quest to get there and well, experience has taught him that he can’t have both, so he’ll take the ambition over a relationship any day. So why does their new waitress leave him so unsettled and bring out the worst side of him? And when she becomes the key to catching an elusive burglar, he’ll do everything to keep her safe.
Maggie Walker has big dreams and being a waitress isn’t one of them but it keeps a roof over her head, so she’ll do what she has to do until she achieves her dream of becoming a published author. But she may not have even this job for long if she keeps spilling food and drinks on Anthony Moretti, NYPD Captain and the man who flusters her like no other. Maggie has been down this road before and her divorce left her with a bad taste in her mouth but more than that, the deadbeats and criminals that make up her family tree will ensure that Anthony never gives her the time of day.
STEAL ME is all about second chances in life and love and Maggie epitomizes this more than any other character in the book. Maggie had given up everything for a family that used her over and over again. Leaving her past behind and starting over in New York was the best decision she made and even though she was struggling, she was living her life and had hope for better things. Maggie was easily my favorite character in STEAL ME. Her growth over the course of the book was fun to read. Her sassy side came out big time as her confidence grew and I loved it. Anthony was quite annoying with his bullheadedness but in spite of that, he stole my heart especially when he finally realized that he was in love with Maggie. One thing I enjoy about this book is that passion between them built up slowly (something I love about Ms. Layne’s writing) and the build-up was so much fun to watch.
I also love the connections of family and friendship and how each person adds to but does not steal the focus from the central characters. STEAL ME was definitely a treat to read and is a must-read for anyone who loves family, friendship and love.
Maggie Walker had become their default waitress at the diner back when their old waitress Helen had retired a couple months ago. And while Anthony missed Helen and her too-strong floral perfume, he had to admit that Maggie was the better to look at.
She had a wholesome, girl-next-door look that appealed to him mightily. Brown hair that was always on the verge of slipping out of its ponytail, wide, compelling green eyes that made you want to unload all your darkest secrets.
Curvy. Hips that were exactly right;, breasts that were even better.
And then there was that smile. It managed to be both shy and friendly, which was handy because he was betting it was very hard for even the most impatient customers to get annoyed at her.
But Anth didn’t buy the doing-my-best routine, and seeing as she was dealing with an entire table of observant cops, he was betting the rest of his family wouldn’t buy it either.
Then Luc leaned forward and gave Maggie an easy grin. “Don’t even worry about it, Mags. Didn’t even notice I was running low!”
Luc’s girlfriend, Ava, smoothly reached up one hand and swatted him on the back of the head, the gesture so graceful, so practiced, that she never once sloshed her coffee. Anthony nearly smiled.
To say that Ava Sims was good for his little brother would be an understatement. The big brother in Anthony would be forever grateful that the gorgeous reporter had helped Luc vanquish his demons. But the big brother in Anth was also grateful that Ava helped keep his younger brother in line. Or at least tried to.
He rolled his eyes as Luc shot a guilty smile at his girlfriend, but even as he slid his mug towards the edge of the table so Maggie wouldn’t have to reach as far.
Then Anth watched in utter dismay as Vincent did the same.
Vincent. The guy who’d practically devoted his life to being perverse, was trying to make life easier for their inept waitress.
Anthony was so busy trying to figure out what about the frazzled waitress turned his brothers into a bunch of softies that he didn’t think to move his own mug to be more convenient, and Maggie had to lean all the way in to top off his cup.
It was a feat that their old waitress could have handled readily, but Helen had retired months ago and for reasons that Luc didn’t understand, the rest of the Moretti family had embraced Maggie as Helen’s replacement.
Anthony didn’t realize that his mug had overflowed until scalding coffee dripped onto his thigh.
“Son of a—”
He caught himself before he could finish the expletive, grabbing a large handful of napkins from the silver dispenser and trying to soak up the puddle of coffee on his jeans before it burned his skin.
“Nice, Anth,” Elena said, tossing another bunch of napkins at him. Like this was his fault.
“Oh my God,” Maggie said, her voice horrified. “I’m so sorry, Officer…”
“It’s Captain,” he snapped, his eyes flicking up and meeting hers.
Silence descended over the table until Vincent muttered douchebag around a coughing fit.
But Anthony refused to feel chagrined. The woman had waited on the family every Sunday for weeks; one would think she could get his title right. To say nothing of mastering the art of pouring coffee.
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