If You Only Knew:A Trust No One Novel by Dixie Lee Brown
Publication Date: January 21, 2014
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Beautiful but deadly, Rayna Dugan is a force to be reckoned with – even in heels.
But when her plans for the evening suddenly involve defending her life against a criminal empire, Rayna knows she needs backup. Suddenly the choice she made to leave Ty and her old mercenary team in Montana seems like a bad call. She’s been running from her feelings for the tough, rugged man, but Rayna needs Ty now more than ever. Yet when Ty becomes the new target, his help could mean his death…
Ex-cop Ty Whitlock has spent the last six years waiting for his past to catch up with him. When it finally does, he isn’t expecting the woman he loves-the one who walked out on him-to be caught in its web. He knows she’s moved on, but he can’t help but want one more chance with the petite beauty. Ty’s only got one choice: find Rayna and keep her safe. But that’s the easy part. Once he finds her, can he convince her to stay?
This is the second novel in the Trust No One series that I’ve read, and just like with When I Find You, Brown keeps her readers engaged. The plot is suspenseful and has some eyebrow-raising revelations that add unexpected twists to keep the story from being predictable. In the midst of the danger, the hero and heroine struggle to rekindle their stalled relationship, which has never really progressed beyond friendship although their feelings for each other run much deeper.
If You Only Knew features Rayna and Ty, two members of Joe Reynold’s team of mercenaries who do contract work for U.S. governmental agencies. The prologue opens with Rayna explaining to Ty that she’s leaving the team and him behind to pursue a different career and lifestyle. She’s afraid of how emotionally attached she’s become to Ty, and, after the death of her brother who was also in this same line of work, she doesn’t think she would be able to handle the pain of losing someone else she loved. Unfortunately, Rayna gets pulled back into Ty’s life after she is abducted by a Russian Mobster, an enemy from Ty’s past, with unfinished business to settle.
Although this novel can be read as a standalone, I wish that I had read All or Nothing, before I began this book because I felt that, perhaps, I had missed important details on how the death of Rayna’s brother truly impacted her life since her grief seems to still hold her back from living a fulfilling life. I especially enjoy romances where the couple is in the early stages of their relationship, experiencing the excitement and anticipation of getting to know each other and when the sexual tension is the most intense, but I didn’t get to witness that with Rayna and Ty since the story opens with their breakup.
Despite missing the newness of Rayna and Ty’s romance, I appreciated the existing level of chemistry and sexual tension between them as their relationship becomes more intimate. Rayna and Ty do have one explicit, sizzling love scene that is also sweet because their union is based upon more than just lust. It’s obvious they are in love since readers get their alternating viewpoints in the narration, but after a while, it became frustrating to watch them go through a lot of unnecessary angst because they aren’t open and honest about their feelings and insecurities.
When Andre Komarov abducts Rayna as a means of blackmail, Ty and the rest of the team come to her rescue, and Ty must deal with his unresolved connection to this ruthless criminal.Even though Ty worries he may lose Rayna once his secrets are revealed, he is still determined to protect her until Andre is no longer a threat. Much of the action is focused on rescuing Rayna from multiple kidnappings which eventually becomes overkill. However, the climactic final showdown between Ty and Andre is great and kept me riveted the entire time.
Rayna and Ty are surrounded by a great cast of characters. Ty’s former partner, Nate is one of my favorite, and based on the events in this book, I think his character may continue to play a role in the series. Brown also lays the foundation for a potential love story between Nate and another member of Joe’s team, which I hope will be featured in a future installment. The heroes from the previous books, Joe and Walker, continue to play prominent roles in the series, and I like being able to stay connected to these characters.
I do plan to backtrack and read the first book so I can fully experience the entirety of this series, yet, I also think readers can still enjoy If You Only Knew without having read the previous novels.
Source: I purchased this book to provide an honest review.
DIXIE LEE BROWN lives and writes in Central Oregon, inspired by what she believes is the most gorgeous scenery anywhere. She resides with two dogs and a cat, who make sure she never takes herself too seriously. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, movies, and trips to the beach.
Buy If You Only Knew
Digital Copy of All or Nothing and When I Find You