Secrets (Brantley Walker: Off the Books) – ARC review

by Nicole Edwards
Release Date:  February 22, 2022
Publisher: Nicole Edwards Limited
Book #6 in the Brantley Walker: Off the Books series
Number of Pages: 344
Kindle Edition
Source:  ARC from author
Romantic Suspense
Ages 17 and up
CW: murder, kidnapping, military PTSD
The members of the Off the Books Task Force are nearing their one-year anniversary, and while they’ve closed several cases, it hasn’t been easy. Despite the fact the governor disbanded the team, they are thriving under the umbrella of Sniper 1 Security. Now that they work in the private sector, there are new tasks that must be tackled, like bringing on new members.

Even as they work to broaden their reach, there are still cases to be worked. When a partner in an investment firm goes missing, Governor Greenwood reaches out for their assistance and the team uses their combined skills to unravel the mystery that surrounds his disappearance.

Not only do secrets emerge where the case is concerned, many more are brought to light within the team.

Nicole Edwards has a vast world that moves from series to series. They overlap and weave in and out of each other. Yet, for the most part, her books can be read as standalone stories if one was so inclined to only want to read about one particular character. (I don’t know why, I love following her winding narrative.) Not so with this series. I would strongly caution anyone who is thinking of picking this book up as a one off to think again.

This is one of those books where so much is happening yet nothing really happens. Let me try to explain that sentence and hope I don’t confuse you further. Brantley, Reese, and the rest of the OTB task force has had some intense situations that culminated in tragedy as well as triumph. It’s time for them to regroup and rebuild. They started out as a ragtag group of friends, and friends of friends, who came together with a common purpose. Now that Sniper 1 Security has taken over the financial running of the group they have the means to hire more staff, buy more gear, and get a real feel for the work they want to do. So a lot of this story is meeting new characters, seeing old characters in a new way, and overall witnessing the impact the previous year has had on our beloved characters.

There are some resolutions and some HEAs, there are many secrets (hence the title!) that will start making you feel that hollow pit in your stomach as certain storylines unfold. There are other secrets that will give you hope that the relationships you’ve been rooting for will work out. On top of it all, there is so much emotion and love from our main couple, although they are both suffering and not talking to each other. Instead, they both (especially Brantley) fall back on physical intimacy every time things get hard. Both Reese and Brantley know this cannot be sustained, but neither seem to want to be the one to speak up first. Stubbornness leads to stupidity.

I trust this author. There are many, many times in previous stories of hers I just couldn’t see where she was taking us. She’s broken all of our hearts a time or two, but done it fantastically and with purpose. She’s also brought so much joy and hopefulness to her stories. When I got to the end of this book, I just kept reminding myself that Nicole Edwards must know what she’s doing. But she’s sure keeping me on the edge while she’s doing it! A warning to romance readers, while we do get an HFN for many of the characters, some are still muddling through. Just as with her other books in this particular series, this storyline is very fluid and not something to be tied up at the end of each and every book.

4 stars

**I received an ARC of this book courtesy of the author. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and given freely**

About Cheri

I'm the mom of two boys and wife to my high school sweetheart. Our oldest, Josh, is living at home while working and paying off student loans. Our youngest, Griffin recently left his active duty Army job and is now National Guard here at home. He moved back to Michigan with his wife Kirsten and our beautiful granddaughter Hazel. I work part time and try to fit as much reading into my life as possible.
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1 Response to Secrets (Brantley Walker: Off the Books) – ARC review

  1. Pingback: Confessions (Brantley Walker: Off the Books) – ARC review | All In Good Time

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