Book Review

A Fatal Affair Series Books 1-3

Marie Force

Carina Press, Jun 2010

Kindle, 476 Pages

Also available in paperback, audiobook, MP3 CD

Genre(s) Contemporary Romance, Political/Legal Romance

Source purchased at current price





Fatal Justice #2

Marie Force

Carina Press, Nov 2012

Kindle, 400 Pages

Also available in paperback, audiobook, MP3 CD

Genre(s) Contemporary Romance, Political/Legal Romance

Source purchased at current price






Fatal Consequences #3

Marie Force

Carina Press, Nov 2012

Kindle, 544 Pages

Also available in paperback, audiobook, MP3 CD

Genre(s) Contemporary Romance, Political/Legal Romance

Source purchased at current price

Other books in this series

Fatal Destiny #3.5, Fatal Flaw #4, Fatal Deception #5, Fatal Mistake #6, Fatal Jeopardy #7, Fatal Scandal #8, Fatal Frenzy #9, Fatal Identity #10, Fatal Threat #11, Fatal Chaos

My Disclaimer:

I purchased a three-book bundle at the current price. I am voluntarily providing an honest review in which all opinions are fully my own. I am not being compensated in any way.

~ Judi E. Easley for Blue Cat Review

What it’s about…

Fatal Affair

Chief of Staff and best friend, Nick Cappuano, discovers the murdered body of Senator John O’Connor. It’s Detective Sam Holland’s case. It only takes the first look for both Nick and Sam to remember their one night together six years ago.

Can Nick and Sam work together through the tangled mess of government, family, and police politics to find the killer? Can they keep their hands off each other until it’s solved?

Technical Tidbits…

The cover works really well with the couple there at the top and the capital building down at the bottom. The couple work as good representatives for Nick and Sam, too.

The storyline is really good. It mixes the political, familial, and police aspects really well.

The characters are introduced and developed very well. Even most of the secondary characters are explained well enough to understand who they are and what their motivations are.

The pace is pretty fast. It’s mostly going from one crisis to another with just enough time in there for a kiss here and some love there.

The tension builds very fast and remains right up to the end with the unhappy resolution to the murder.

And this is where you STOP if you don’t want to see any SPOILERS

The good, the bad, and the ugly…and how much it lit up my life… ✰✰✰✰✰

What a lovely read! Almost 500 pages of intrigue, secret love, family secrets, government politics, and more. How could I not love this? And just think, each book in this series is like this! And it doesn’t end it doesn’t end by saying “and now you need to buy my next book to get the rest of the story”. No, this isn’t a standalone, but it is a complete story. If I never read the next book, I would be okay. But, of course, I did read the next book!

I want to talk about Marie Force’s amazingly rich characters. Former Deputy Chief Skip Holland, now retired with a severe disability due to an injury suffered in the line of duty. Skip is Sam’s Dad. Her #1 Hero. He sits in a wheelchair and breaths through a tube at night because of a bullet lodged in his neck. He was shot during a normal traffic stop just a few months before his retirement. The bullet can’t be removed. He has sensation only in his right index finger. It’s still an open case that every detective on the force works on at some time or other. Sam discusses her cases with him.

Then there is Sam’s partner. Frederico Cruz, affectionately known as Freddie. He’s as handsome as a model, slim but built like a gym addict. His only addiction seems to be junk food, though. He was raised to respect the church and his mother got him to take a vow of chastity until he was married. So he looks like a walking wet dream, but he’s a virgin. And he’s always reminding Sam not to take the Lord’s name in vain. He’s a new detective and he’s learning from the best. He’s even taking notes. He wears a trench coat to help his image.

And the murder victim. Who was he? Senator John O’Connor. The second son of the Senator from Virginia. Not the one being groomed to take his father’s position. No. He’s the one who stepped into the position when his big brother screwed up. He’s the one who became so popular that the DNC of Virginia was pushing him to run for a second term. Best friend to Nick Cappuano since childhood. They’d shared everything. Except that John O’Connor was a man with many secrets. One of them, at least, was deadly.

What it’s about…

Fatal Justice

Julian Sinclair comes to town to be considered for a seat on the Supreme Court. He’s an old school friend of Nick’s and a friend of the O’Connor family. He has very strong views and opinions that will shift things on the Court. When he is killed, his views are thought to be the reason.

Sam is caught up in the domestic case that interrupted her swearing-in ceremony. Clippings about her father’s case were found in the apartment of the family involved. It seems the whole police force is out after Clarence Reese because of the connection. But Reese shoots back and Freddie ends up in the hospital.

Then a young man named Tucker is found shot. Tucker was gay. He was a very close friend of Julian Sinclair’s estranged nephew. Is there a connection? Can Sam and Nick move fast enough to stop the last killing?

Technical Tidbits…

The cover reflects the fact that Sam and Nick are now a couple in this book. I always like it when the covers of a series keep up with the story so well.

The storyline is really gritty this time.

The characters are getting deeper into the main characters and the regular secondary characters are becoming quite well developed as well.

The pace is even faster in this book than in the first one. It seems like they almost can’t keep up with things this time.

The tension is incredible.

And this is where you STOP if you don’t want to see any SPOILERS

The good, the bad, and the ugly…and how much it lit up my life… ✰✰✰✰✰

It blew me away. Both Nick and Sam are hurt in major ways in the car accident. It was a big scene in the book, the whole pursuit, and crash. Then to find out it was totally unrelated to the case. It was gang-related based on their popularity in the press! The Senator was worth more points than the Lieutenant.

Sam’s interaction with LT Stahl actually makes my skin crawl. Ms. Force writes him so sleazy! Every time he comes near her he gets worse! She really should have that office fumigated. But he is bound and determined to get her for hooking up with Nick during the O’Connor case. The fact that it was her ex-husband Peter that exposed their relationship was quite the twist. I love that the author puts things like that in.

There are two other twists in this book. One, I find sort of sad. Clarence Reese is sought by everyone because they think he’s connected to Skip’s shooting. All this because they’ve found a box of clippings in a closet in his family’s apartment. So with everyone chasing around after him and his wounding Freddie in the dark by accident. Yes, by accident. He knew nothing and blew his own brains out. I find that pretty sad.

The other twist is really twisty and it’s the major one. Diandra Sinclair is a wacko and has so brow-beaten her husband, Preston, he’ll do anything for her. He kills Tucker. Diandra doesn’t want any gays around her family as her new book is ready to launch. It could ruin her politically. But will Preston go that one step further and kill the other young man who is gay? The one in the relationship with Tucker? Tucker’s lover. If she could make him kill his own brother and a young man…

But does she realize that Devon, her own son is the other partner in that relationship? What might Preston be driven to do for her? How far has she pushed him?

What it’s about…

Fatal Consequences

This one is all about sex. Nick makes a deal with Sam. If he can give her three orgasms in 30 minutes, then they will set a wedding date. They now have a wedding planner that Sam calls Tinker Bell and plans are going forward for March 26. Yes, this year!

Someone is raping and killing the immigrant women who clean the senate chambers, and they aren’t being tidy about it. There’s DNA to spare. Then Detective Jeannie McBride is kidnapped and brutally raped as a message to Sam to back off.

Will Nick and Sam be able to set aside all their personal distraction and root out the rot in the capital?

Technical Tidbits…

The cover reflects a couple in love. The view of D.C. shows the wider impact of the story with the nighttime shot of the city.

The storyline is excellent.

The characters are great. The main characters and primary secondaries are getting very well developed at this point. It’s getting so that you can pretty well predict what their reactions should be. Not that the author is letting them get predictable, but we are getting to know them as people. Each new character is incorporated well and quickly if they are going to be staying.

The pace is good. This one is a little slower than the first two, but the type of crime involved is probably the reason. Things are spaced out a bit more.

The tension is in no way slackened because of the pace. Ms. Force has done a great job of keeping us on our toes working out what’s going on from incident to incident.

Writing quality is the key. Ms. Force has mastered the ability to create a scene and move characters through it so well that we aren’t aware of it as we read. She draws us in. Remember it’s over 500 pages this time. She gives us enough description of locations so that we can see where we are and what the conditions are. Yet she brings the actions and characters alive and moves them through this space effortlessly. Just as easily, she lets us drop into a character’s mind and hear what they are thinking or draws back and describes the look on someone’s face so well we know exactly what they’re thinking without their thoughts.

And this is where you STOP if you don’t want to see any SPOILERS

The good, the bad, and the ugly…and how much it lit up my life… ✰✰✰✰✰

Top executives in the government running a prostitution ring using immigrant women who clean the government offices sounds pretty corrupted. But power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. So how unreasonable is it? How high could it go? Selina tells all. All she has to do is stay alive.

Senator Lightfeather might have really loved his mistress, but she was still accepting a lot of money for seeing him and sending it out of the country. And she was pregnant with his child. But his wife didn’t appreciate any of it. She wasn’t the only wife who didn’t like the arrangements. It was time for some Senators to go home and tend to family business.

Family business closer to home takes us to Nick’s problems with his dead-beat mother who drops in and takes him for $25,000 and a chunk of his soul. It’s hard to give up hope that someone will love you someday. And Sam’s ex, Peter, is out of jail. Now they have to worry about the possibility of being blow up again. But Tinker Bell is making lots of progress towards that March 26th date! Freddy gives Elin an ultimatum but it’s only he and Mom for dinner. Gonzo wins his paternity suit and then proposes to Christina. That’s another tie between the Senator’s office and the police station.

The one I worry about is Detective Jeannie McBride. She’s now a kidnap and rape survivor. She’s refusing counseling at this point. She’s not really letting Michael in. He’s trying to stay at her side, but I think he realizes that she’s holding him at a distance. I fully expect her problems to blow up in another book. She and Sam are friends, so Sam will definitely be involved. But Jeannie’s not in a good place right now and it really worries me.

2133 wc

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