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Deadly Testimony (A Safeguard Novel) Mass Market Paperback – January 30, 2018
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About the Author
Piper J. Drake is a bestselling author of romantic suspense and edgy contemporary romance, a frequent flyer, and day job road warrior. She is often distracted by dogs, cupcakes, and random shenanigans. You can find Piper at piperjdrake.com.
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Lizzy hasn’t seen the last of the man she rescued however, and she soon finds herself being recruited to provide him with close personal protection until he can testify at a trial against his former employer in a week. Kyle Yuen is a bit too smooth and a lot too sexy for her peace of mind, and she has no idea how close her personal encounters are about to become; if she did know, she would have speed walked in the other direction as fast as her feet could take her because running would show a lack of control that she rarely exhibits. Working as a sniper, Lizzy is used to being a loner, and years of having to prove her worth as a soldier and a member of a fire team at her most recent employer have facilitated her perfection of an unaffected mask that slips into place as needed.
Kyle has information about his employer’s practices that will likely lead to charges about environmental violations, but when he becomes a constant target with attack after attack trying to end his life, Lizzy decides it’s time to go off the grid to figure out what he knows that is so valuable. The only problem is that Kyle doesn’t know what could be prompting this level of intensity, and now his sister and his nephew are being drawn into the mess as bait to try to bring him out of hiding. Through it all, both Lizzy and Kyle start to bond and show each other the parts of their personality they tend to bury deep and keep hidden from everyone around them. It doesn’t take long before things heat up, leaving them both to wonder what will happen when the intensity of their time together ends with the arrival of the trial- if she can keep him alive to see the witness stand.
Deadly Testimony is the second in the Safeguard series, and while there were a few references to events that seem to have happened in the prior books, I was able to read it as a standalone with very few issues. Kyle and Lizzy were enjoyable characters, and they were able to find some lighthearted moments in the midst of action and tension. I will definitely be reading more of both this series and this author’s works in the future.
Although it took a while to really get "into" the story--Lizzy's a bit standoffish, partly because of the pressures of being a woman in a man-dominated field who constantly has to prove herself and Kyle comes off as somewhat stiffly formal, due in part to cultural differences--once the story got rolling I had a hard time putting it down. I loved the constant costume changes while they were incognito out and about on the streets, though I'm still having a hard time picturing Kyle in a red wig ;)
It did seem like a few things were glossed over/left hanging toward the end--the involvement of Safeguard's counterpart on the opposite side, for example, and their sniper Jewel, who apparently has a past with Safeguard--though perhaps as the series continues that will come up again and be resolved later.
This was my second book by Ms. Drake, but the first in this series--it worked just fine as a standalone, though seeing Lizzie's boss Gabe in action and hearing about Mayin's cooking had me adding book one ( Hidden Impact ) to my TBR before I'd even finished this one.
Rating: 4 stars / B+