Passion and danger collide in the latest contemporary romance featuring the Lawless siblings—from New York Times bestselling author Lexi Blake.
When Drew Lawless discovers a fatal flaw in his plan to avenge his parents’ deaths, he turns to the one woman he promised he wouldn’t touch. He offers her a deal, one that will bring her into his investigation, his life, and his bed.
Investigative reporter Shelby Gates never dreamed how twisted the case would become—or how fascinated she would be with Drew. Every day they spend together binds them. And every night brings her closer to realizing he might be the man for her.
As Drew’s feelings for Shelby grow, so does the danger. From the streets of Dallas to Austin’s high-tech business world, Drew and Shelby play a game begun twenty years before—a game they will win, or die trying.
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Since the beginning of Lexi Blake’s Lawless series, the Lawless siblings quest to avenge their parents’ deaths has led each brother to take drastic measures, compromising their principals and taking advantage of anyone who can help them bring down those responsible, and even though Riley and Bran made amends to the women they betrayed, Drew Lawless is nothing like his brothers, so using a woman for anything more than a release isn’t going to be easy, especially when his heart starts to dictate his actions and his treatment of Shelby Tate.
Revenge is the perfect title for Drew’s story because that has been his singular focus, besides providing for and protecting his siblings, since he built his company and had the means to destroy those people who destroyed their lives. But as each book in the series is published, readers realize that Drew’s plans have to be modified because the person responsible for wreaking havoc on the Lawless family is someone he never would have considered and now not only does he have to deal with the emotional fallout of discovering the truth, but he also must decide how best to protect his siblings, knowing that their lives will be upended even more than they already were all those years ago.
Lexi Blake has always portrayed Drew Lawless as a ruthless and controlled man, which is exactly who he was forced to become as the oldest Lawless sibling. In his viewpoint, his brothers and sister are his responsibility and he doesn’t take that position lightly. Everything he does revolves around providing for and protecting them and he’ll do whatever he needs to do to ensure their safety, even if that means compromising parts of himself to be able to do so. He’s a powerful man who knows how to work the system due to his intellect and deep pockets, but he doesn’t know the first thing about how to show someone his heart without making it a contracted transaction – one that is mutually beneficial but also temporary. So when Drew brings Shelby into his life, into his home, and even into his bed, it’s part of his plan for revenge on the only enemy who hasn’t already paid for their part in destroying his family, but what Drew doesn’t anticipate is the fact that Shelby is not someone who can be handled the way he normally takes care of those around him, proving that perhaps it’s time for someone to give Drew what he’s always needed but never asked for – a person who puts what he needs first and takes on his burdens so that he finally has a chance to claim something completely for himself, which is not something that he’s ever done before.
Drew may piss off a slew of characters in the story as well as some readers who don’t agree with his words or actions, but if everyone took one step back and looked at who Drew had to become at such a young age and the fact that he’s put every part of himself into taking care of everyone around him, it makes sense why he doesn’t know how to deal with his true feelings for Shelby or tries to get what he wants by less than stellar tactics, making himself look like an arrogant prick who’s incapable of opening himself up even one someone gives him the chance to do so.
Shelby is Drew’s perfect counterpart because she’s an independent woman who knows how to handle herself in difficult situations and as a investigative reporter, she’s not afraid to get dirty in the process. She might have been blackmailed into pretending to be Drew’s girlfriend in order to tell the story of the century, but she stands by Drew throughout the entire story because she sees something in him and herself that gives them a fighting chance at something real amidst the deception.
Central to the storyline in Revenge is Drew working to figure out the final puzzle piece of that tragic event all those years ago, and while he’s definitely close to allowing his family to move on, his enemy is figuring out ways to play with him, to destroy his leads, and to take him down. And let me tell you, there are mind-boggling twists and surprising revelations that threaten to upend all of Drew’s progress, forcing him to develop new maneuvers and to shutout those who willingly want to help make things easier on him because he’s always been the one to fix and take care of every aspect of his and his siblings’ lives.
I’ve loved every second spent with the Lawless clan, and I’m hoping that Lexi Blake isn’t finished with this series because one of the characters who is introduced in Revenge needs his story told, and I would love for Blake to do just that!
5 Poison Apples
“I suppose we’re going to be seeing Carly and Bran while we’re in Dallas next week.”
She had one week to get comfortable around Drew. One week to figure out if she could actually sell this cover to his family.
“It would seem odd if I didn’t pay them a visit. Bran knows I have a meeting with Taggart scheduled. We’ll be in Dallas for two days. Dinner with Bran and Carly and Mia and Case has already been planned.”
“Exactly. And you don’t want to raise a bunch of questions. So I was thinking it might be smarter for me to get my own hotel room. I can lay low and they don’t have to know I’m in town.” She’d sat up for a good portion of the night doing two things: thinking about how much she’d wanted to kiss Drew Lawless and then freaking out about it because that was a bad idea. Beware of billionaires with six-pack abs. It was her new mantra. Yes, she’d signed the contract last night, but that didn’t mean she couldn’t reason with her new . . . boss . . . partner . . . whatever he was.
“I told Bran you’re coming with me.”
This was exactly what she’d worried about. “You told him? I thought I would have more time. How am I going to explain this to Carly? I think she’ll wonder why one of her closest friends didn’t mention she was dating her future brother-in-law.”
“I’ve already explained it. We wanted to make sure it was real before we went public. It’s that simple. We met in Los Angeles. I contacted you. We went on a few dates and we’ve been talking a lot. You’ve come out to Austin because we’re contemplating moving in together. This is a trial run,” he said calmly, as though he hadn’t upended her entire life. “Also, I asked Bran not to mention it to Carly because you would rather tell her yourself. It was a safe bet Bran wouldn’t ask too many questions, but Carly will want to know everything. It’s why we need to get our stories straight.”
She focused on the words that messed with her life. “Moving in together? You told them we’re thinking of moving in together?”
“How else was I supposed to explain it when all your belongings arrive here?”
“What?” She winced because the words had come out in a screech. “I’m having your things packed up as we speak. They’ll be here in a few days.”
“Why the hell would you do that?” How was she going to get everything back to LA?
Drew relaxed again as though he’d already gone over this argument in his mind and knew he would win. “I wanted you to be comfortable. This is going to be a full-time job, and not a quick one. I suspect we’ll have to keep up our ruse for at least six months. Potentially a year. Also, that apartment you were living in was incredibly dangerous. Did you know it was recently condemned? The movers told me about it when they explained they were charging me extra for how fast they had to move. It’s scheduled to be demolished in two weeks.”
“What?” She stared at him. He expected her to live with him for six months to a year? Somewhere in the back of her head she’d been thinking a week or two tops, and then she’d go back to LA and work from there. Her apartment building was shitty and she was fairly certain someone cooked meth in part of it, but it was all she could afford. And it was solidly built. There had been no hint that anyone was planning on building in her part of LA. Gentrification had not reared its upscale, hipster head yet, so that left her with one very manipulative bastard. “Tell me you did not buy my apartment building and schedule it for demolition in an attempt to leave me with nowhere to go.”
He managed to look almost angelic in the soft light of morning. “I have no idea what you’re talking about.”
About the Author
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog int eh world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.