Sunday, November 16, 2008

Maximum Exposure by Alison Kent

**Note: this review is spoiler-free, so read on without fear**

Private Investigator Finn McLain has handled his share of odd assignments, so when lovesick gallery owner Dustin Parks hires him to go to Miami and dig up information on Roland Green, the manager of a small boutique, Finn thinks nothing of it. But this assignment turns out to be more complicated than Finn could have imagined when he meets the boutique’s sexy owner, Olivia Hammond.

From the moment they meet, Olivia knocks Finn’s socks off with an unusual business proposal. She needs a photographer to take pictures of her for an erotic art exhibit, and she thinks Finn’s just the man for the job. Finn can’t help but be intrigued by the proposal, nor by the stunning woman who claims she likes to “let people look.”

Finn knows there’s far more to Olivia than she’s letting on and he takes her up on the offer, eager to discover what mysteries lie beneath Olivia’s exhibitionist fa├žade. With each photograph, each erotic encounter, Olivia and Finn get closer and closer, the pull between them undeniable. But even as desire burns hot between the lovers, Finn’s simple investigation assignment uncovers dangerous information people are willing to kill to keep hidden.

The clock is ticking, and both Finn and Olivia have to decide if it’s worth taking a chance and revealing all their secrets for a love more wild and passionate then either could ever have dreamed.

Better have those oven mitts ready because Maximum Exposure is hot enough to burn! Alison Kent has penned an explosively hot romance filled with, action, intrigue, and sizzling sensuality.

Finn is a hero who just comes alive on the page. He has that slightly rumpled sexiness that hits strong and hard because you don’t expect if from such a seemingly laid-back male. Olivia, for her part, was an interesting heroine. She’s completely open and comfortable with her sexuality, which I admire, but she also uses exhibitionism as armor. As Finn starts to get under her skin, there are chinks in that armor, and the vulnerability hidden beneath and the reasons for it are heartbreaking, serving only to make her a more endearing character. Ms. Kent made me care about Finn and Olivia’s romance, not just for the story’s sake, but because I cared about the two of them and wanted nothing more than for them to find happiness with one another.

In addition to Olivia and Finn’s story, there’s a strong subplot involving Roland Green, who is actually undercover DEA agent Roman Greyle. Without giving away plot spoilers, I will say that Roman has an equally steamy romance with Jodi Fontaine whose boss, Dustin, is in love with the supposedly gay “Roland.” Roman and Jodi’s storyline was every bit as engaging as Finn and Olivia’s and I enjoyed seeing how the two plots converged.

Maximum Exposure releases November 25, 2008. It is the first book I’ve read by Ms. Kent and it definitely won’t be my last. A captivating blend of sex and danger, Maximum Exposure is not to be missed!