Oct 3 2016 2:30pm

First Look: Nichole Severn’s His Seductive Target (October 4, 2016)

His Seductive Target by Nichole Severn

Nichole Severn
His Seductive Target (Afterlife #2)
Nichole Severn / October 4, 2016 / $2.99 digital

Trust is a big issue in any relationship. You’ve got to trust your doctor when you’re sick. You’ve got to trust your son when he takes the car out for the first time. You’ve got to trust that your wife won’t cheat on you when you deploy for war. And when you’re a New York City detective investigating the death of your sister, you’ve got to trust that the FBI agent on the case will include you on his findings and do right by your murdered sister. In the most basic of situations, it takes time and experience to earn trust. When you’re a demon trying to regain your soul, you’ve got to earn it on the fly.

Former Detective Veranika (Nika) Russo has been put on suspension from the New York City Police Department, and stumbles across her sister’s murder scene one night while trying to earn her way back into the department’s good graces. Already on site is FBI agent Grayson Wyatt, who’s aware of her situation. Once she realizes one of the victims is her sister, Rachel, she’s determined to remain in the loop.

“Unfortunately, Detective, that’s a little above your pay grade. Remember? The less you know, the better.”

“You can’t be serious.” She closed the small distance he’d left between them. “That’s my sister on the floor right there. Do you really think—”

“Nika,” Reynolds said. “Don’t push it. The FBI—”

“Shut up, Reynolds.” She faced Grayson. God, what had she seen in him before? All feds were the same. Nothing mattered but the case. Screw the people involved. “If you have any leads on what could’ve done this, I need to know about it. How many more people are you going to let die because of this thing running free on the streets all because of clearance?”

Severn peppers in interesting bits of detail to let you know this ain’t your ordinary homicide. Like, Rachel’s heart is missing, and the marks on her chest appear to have been done by an animal. And when pressured, Nika can shove a man nearly twice her size across the room … through the air.

Grayson isn’t without mystery, either. He and Nika had had drinks a couple of times the year before, but any chance at a relationship stopped when he kind of disappeared. From the beginning, we learn he has “new powers,” but Severn trickles the specifics as the story unfolds. It is also evident that while he’s still attracted and drawn to Nika, something else is driving his need to keep her close.

“I want to find your sister’s murderer as much as you do, Detective. We need to work together. Me with my knowledge of our suspect, you with your skills as New York City’s finest.” A light exhale swept across the back of his neck. He sucked her scent in deep to keep it from vanishing on the breeze. Her hold on his shoulder faltered, but not for long. She didn’t trust him. And she shouldn’t. He’d told her the truth about working together, but that didn’t mean he didn’t have ulterior motives.

In time, Nika and Grayson do get on the same page. He’s facing an epic battle of self-preservation, and she’s facing an epic battle of self-realization. But the biggest battle is whether they can trust one another.

“You’re right. I should’ve told you what we were up against, but would you have believed me?” He leaned back in the chair again.

She took another drink of coffee to buy some time. Short answer? Not on her life. The hallucinations—demons—she’d seen as a child were so different than the one she’d encountered in Reynold’s apartment. And they hadn’t come around for years with the help of medication and therapy. She answered honestly. “I don’t know. Were you convinced so easily?”

I enjoyed the character development and plot, and the twists and turns of the story. In Nichole Severn’s world of angels and demons, the lines of good and evil—and right and wrong—are blurred… and that makes for a really sharp story.


Learn more about or pre-order a copy of His Seductive Target by Nichole Severn, available October 4, 2016:

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Dolly Sickles is a Southerner with a lifelong penchant for storytelling. Her Secret Squirrel identity is Dolly Sickles, but she also writes romance as Becky Moore, and this year her first children’s book will be published as Dolly Dozier. She’s an avid reader of all literature, but she takes refuge in the romance genre, where despite the most grandiose, exhilarating, strange, and unlikely plot that’s out there, every story has a happy ending.

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