After being wounded in action, NSA agent Nathan Ortiz comes home to Miami, eager to return to duty. But he doesn't expect his newest mission to lead him straight to the one woman he loved, lost, and has never gotten over.
A beautiful, successful restaurateur, Amelia Rios enjoys giving back to her community, especially to struggling women. Then a woman she recently hired stops showing up for work, and, unfortunately, she isn’t the first to go missing.
Soon Amelia finds herself thrust into a shadowy, dark world, working side by side with Nathan, the only man she’s ever loved. They must confront old feelings as they battle a ruthless enemy preying on the poor and weak. The heat simmering between Nathan and Amelia could mean a second chance for them—but first they have to survive.
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Amelia Rios took the tulip-shaped champagne glass from her date, Iker Mercado, with a smile. At forty-five, he was seventeen years older than her and definitely the oldest man she’d ever been on a date with. Not that she dated much, not with her schedule. But Mercado was interesting, charming, handsome, and he didn’t have a reputation as a man-whore. If he had, she would have declined his invitation. In her experience, playboy types tended to have little respect for her gender. No, thank you.
If anything, the man had practically lived like a saint for the last twenty-five years. She knew from gossip that his wife had died at nineteen during childbirth. He’d only been twenty, yet had raised his daughter and had never gotten remarried or really even dated. If gossip was to be believed, of course. In this case, she believed it.
“You look beautiful tonight,” he murmured, his gaze raking over her appreciatively. But not in a creepy way. Everything about him was so polished, from his tailored tuxedo to his genuine smile. When he looked at people or talked to them, he was always engaged and none of it seemed forced.
“You look pretty good yourself.” She smiled, pasting on the brightest one she could muster. She rarely came to events such as the auction Mercado was putting on. She always felt like an impostor at things like this. While no one could say she didn’t look the part with her sleek black dress, new manicure and pedicure, and, thanks to a friend, an intricate hairstyle that looked as if she’d paid a fortune to have it done, she still felt like a fraud. It was her own insecurities, something she was well aware of. Didn’t change the fact that she felt like a big fake standing around with so many women of Miami’s high society, all of whom were decked out in glittering, blinding jewelry. Part of her that she hated admitting existed wondered why Mercado had even asked her to this thing. He’d pursued her decently enough too, asking her out three times before she’d agreed.
She was pretty, she knew that, but so many of the women were wealthy and elegant with the right pedigree. She was none of those things. She’d lived in dumps for years before finally getting her restaurants off the ground. Now she made a good living, but some days she still felt like that young girl working double shifts seven days a week and so desperate to claw her way out of her life that she’d have done practically anything. People who think money can’t buy you happiness have never been poor. Not that she actually thought money could buy happiness, but it sure as hell paid the bills and gave her stability.
“So, how do you think it’s going? Or is it too soon to tell?” she continued, taking advantage of it just being the two of them. Considering he was the one putting on the silent auction for charity and was a well-respected man, they’d barely had more than a minute of alone time tonight. Oddly she wasn’t that disappointed. The man was perfect on paper and incredibly nice, but she didn’t feel much of a spark.
“I think it’s going well.” He stepped a fraction closer, letting his hand settle on one of her hips in a loose, but somehow still possessive gesture. It didn’t make her uncomfortable, but it was surprising. “Though I now see that asking you to this for our first date was a mistake.”
Shock rippled through her at his words. Did he not think she was the right kind of woman to bring to this? “Was it?” Her words came out icier than she’d intended.
He blinked in surprise, a small frown pulling at his mouth. “We’ve had no private time. I’d like to take you out again soon, just the two of us. Maybe I’ll cook for you?”
Oh God, she felt like an idiot. She wanted to crush all her insecurities, but sometimes they just flared to the surface with no warning. The clenching in her gut dissipated when it registered he hadn’t been insulting her. “I—”
“Iker!” A female voice cut off the rest of what Amelia had been about to say.
Which was maybe a good thing. She wasn’t certain she wanted to go on another date with him anyway. If the spark wasn’t there, she doubted it would magically appear during another date. Deep down she wondered if she’d ever feel that “thing” with anyone. She did once, but that was so long ago. Over a decade. And she was pretty certain she’d just built up the combustible attraction in her mind. No one could have been that sexy, that intense, that—
She realized that Mercado was introducing her to someone. Naomi Baronet. A beautiful woman with bright red hair swept up into a simple twist. She was likely in her forties. Her features were sharp, defined, and elegant. Amelia smiled and shook the hand the woman was offering. Thank God she didn’t have to do the air-kiss thing so many people had been doing tonight. “It’s a pleasure to meet you.”
“You as well, Miss Rios.” Her eyes glinted with something that made Amelia feel uneasy. The woman watched her like a bug under a microscope.
But she kept her smile in place. “Please call me Amelia.”
“And you must call me Naomi. I’ve been wanting to meet you for a while now.” Her smile was easy, her teeth a brilliant white, but there was no warmth in her eyes.
“You have?” Amelia couldn’t imagine why. She had never even heard of this woman.
Naomi nodded, her eyes narrowing just a fraction as Iker slid his arm around Amelia’s waist, holding her loosely, but still close. It felt as if he was being protective. “Yes, I know you’ve been working in tandem with Maria and all those . . . unfortunate women.” Disdain laced the last two words, even as she tried to mask it. “I know Maria’s father disapproves of all the time she spends at that center, but she’s such a giving woman. I don’t know how she does it.”
Unfortunate women? “That” center? This woman was like a cartoon character. Amelia forced herself to keep her voice even. Sometimes her temper got away with her, and tonight was not the time for that. “She does a great service to our community. And those ‘unfortunate’ women are basically young girls who had nothing growing up and simply want a better life for themselves. And they’re not afraid to work hard for it.” Something Amelia could appreciate. Ice coated her voice even as she tried to order herself to keep that facade in place. But people like Naomi, who wore entitlement around her like a silk wrap, annoyed her.
The woman blinked in surprise, but before she could respond, Iker’s grip on Amelia tightened. “Naomi, I see someone I need to speak to, but save me a dance.” As he steered Amelia away, she inwardly cringed.
“Ah, sorry if I was—”
“Don’t apologize,” he said through a smile. “She is . . . an unlikable individual. And if you see me dancing with her later, I beg you to come save me.” The light humor in his voice eased the tightness in her chest.
“You’re not friends with her?”
“No. I’ve done business with her brother, but that’s the extent of our relationship. She’s here because she wants to show off her jewelry and be seen. She doesn’t care about our community.” It was clear he did care.
Amelia wondered what was wrong with her. Why she didn’t feel more of a spark for him. The setting tonight was perfectly romantic. Afro-Cuban jazz played in the background, the band he’d hired nothing less than spectacular. The music—along with the servers walking around wearing fedoras and the birds-of-paradise centerpieces—gave the auction a vintage, glamorous Old Havana feel.
“There’s something I need to tell you,” he continued, pulling her closer to the dance floor, expertly maneuvering through the throng of people. “I had you checked out before asking you on a date.”
Gathering her thoughts, she took a sip of her champagne before responding, “You mean like investigated?”
He nodded. “Yes. I don’t date much and I’m careful when I do.”
Whoa, he must be wealthier than she’d realized, something that made her incredibly uncomfortable. “Okay.” She wasn’t even certain how to respond.
He rubbed a hand over the back of his neck, seemingly uncomfortable as well, which was at odds with the polished man. “I wanted to be up-front with you. I should probably apologize, but I’m not sorry. I’ve gotten burned in the past by women who wanted only one thing from me.”
The ghost of a smile touched her lips. It was refreshing that he was being so honest, but also a little unnerving. “I Googled you,” she admitted. Definitely not the same thing as having her investigated, though.
He smiled, the charming man perfectly back in place. His hair was a honey brown with just a few faint hints of gray peeking through. “And?”
“And you seem pretty decent.”
He laughed at that. “You do wonders for my ego.”
Shrugging, she took another sip of her champagne. “So, what did you find out about me that I probably wouldn’t have shared on a first date?” She couldn’t help wondering what he’d discovered in his investigation. Probably that she’d changed her last name. Maybe he’d figured out why, maybe not. She wasn’t going to offer up the information, not unless they got to know each other better. It was too hard to talk about. Having her name linked to her mother’s, a prostitute, wasn’t something she’d wanted for the rest of her life.
“You’re the owner of two successful restaurants, something I already knew anyway.”
“How do you know they’re successful?”
Now he shrugged, all casual innocence. “About a year ago I looked into buying commercial property near La Cocina de Amelia. I checked out the surrounding businesses to see how profitable they were.”
Smart. “Did you buy the property?”
A brief nod. “I did. I wish I’d gone into one of your restaurants back then, though. Maybe we would have met sooner.” His eyes darkened at that, undeniable heat simmering there.
She felt her cheeks warm up just a bit at the boldness in his gaze. She still wasn’t sure she felt anything for him and loathed herself for it. Loathed that after a decade she still had lingering feelings for a man she knew she’d never see again. It was her own fault, but it didn’t lessen the emotions one iota. Glancing away, she nearly dropped her glass when she spotted Nathan freaking Ortiz moving around the edge of the dance floor, headed her way.
Had she lost her ever-loving mind? She gave herself a hard mental shake and looked away. When she found her gaze drawn directly back to the man again, she realized that no, she hadn’t lost her mind.
Taller than her—but who wasn’t?—muscular, yet lean, he filled out his tuxedo with absolute perfection. He had the sleek lines of a graceful predator. Though he wasn’t looking at her, there was no doubt in her mind that he’d seen her and was making his way over here. He was moving with far too much purpose. What was he doing here? Was he living in Miami again? The last she knew he’d joined the Marine Corps, but that had been twelve years ago. She guessed he could be on social media, but she only had accounts for her business, not herself, so she didn’t know. She’d been tempted a time or two to look him up but had never followed through. She figured he’d gotten married and had kids by now—not something she needed to see or know about. She didn’t begrudge him any happiness, but the thought of him settling down with someone had just been too depressing. Actually seeing pictures of him on social media with a smiling, happy family? No, thanks. It wasn’t as if they had any common friends, so she’d never heard an inkling about him over the years. That alone had made it so much easier to bury her curiosity. Or at least ignore it.
Just watching him move was like watching—Gah, she couldn’t even think of a good analogy, but a low-grade heat started building inside her, her nipples tightening almost painfully in awareness. The man was even sexier than she remembered, but there was nothing boyish about him anymore. He’d been eighteen the last time she saw him, so he’d be almost thirty now. He had a bit of scruff on his face, not a full-on beard, but oh sweet Lord, he was gorgeous. She absolutely hated that her body just seemed to flare to life at the mere sight of him. Like a switch flipping, she didn’t even feel like herself right now. She wanted to crawl out of her skin to escape this surreal sensation of watching the man whom she’d never gotten over make his way toward her and her date.
Amelia tore her gaze from Nathan as he disappeared behind a cluster of people and focused on Iker, who was still smiling at her. Guilt suffused her, but thank God he couldn’t read her mind. She wanted to ask him to dance, to drag him out onto the gleaming wooden floor and get away from Nathan. If that made her a coward, she didn’t care. When Iker plucked a new champagne glass for her from one of the passing servers, she didn’t protest.
“I’d like you to meet an associate of mine,” Iker murmured, slipping his arm around her waist in the same way he’d done with Naomi, only this time his grip was tighter, less casual. Definitely a male-territorial thing, if she had to guess.
When she turned in his arm, looking up to meet his associate, she shouldn’t have been surprised to see Nathan. But the shock of seeing him up close was a punch to her senses. Blood rushed to her face and she inwardly cursed her reaction.
“Amelia, this is Miguel Ortiz.”
Miguel? Nathan’s eyes were the same dark espresso she remembered. She didn’t know what to make of the name Miguel but didn’t comment on that. If he was using another name, she figured he didn’t want to admit they knew each other. So she didn’t acknowledge that she knew him, instead smiling politely as she held out a hand.
He took it, shook her hand almost stiffly, formally. It was weird touching him again after so long. Just feeling his skin against her brought up far too many memories. Ones that should stay buried. The man had always been so talented with his fingers and mouth. So, so talented. Something she shouldn’t be thinking about.
“A pleasure to meet you.” His words were raspy, but it was clear he didn’t plan to acknowledge her either. Okay, so he was definitely using an alias.
She’d be lying if she said she wasn’t curious why. No matter what, she certainly wasn’t going to call him out in front of anyone else. She swallowed hard, forcing her throat to work. “You too.” Two words—she was a freaking rock star. She swallowed again, this time subtly. “Are you in antiquities too?” she asked, looking between the two men, thankful that she seemed to have herself under control.
Nathan looked at Iker, something dark in his gaze. “Something like that.”
She wasn’t sure what passed between them, but Iker seemed annoyed. He was still all charm, but something had shifted.
“Would it offend you if I asked your date for a dance?” Nathan asked, his gaze perfectly placid and polite. But there was something in his eyes she couldn’t get a handle on.
“I don’t speak for Amelia.” Iker’s voice was butter smooth.
Now Nathan turned that laserlike focus on her again. “Will you dance with me?”
A soft Cuban beat filled the air as the lights dimmed a fraction. “Uh . . .” She glanced at Iker. She didn’t want to be rude and they’d both already danced with other people earlier in the evening. Still, it felt as if it might be impolite to say yes, but she really wanted to talk to Nathan—or Miguel—and ask why he was using another name and why he was in Miami. For a brief moment she wondered if he was in some sort of criminal business, but almost immediately she discarded that idea. The Nathan she’d known had seen the world in black and white; he’d been so damn honorable about everything. Since she wasn’t going to find out by guessing, she let her curiosity win. “Do you mind?”
Iker’s expression was soft as he shook his head. “No, but save the next one for me.” Surprising her, he kissed her forehead in a sweet gesture.
Before she could react or think, Nathan took her hand and she found herself in his arms. She was glad she’d worn heels so she was better matched for him, height-wise. He was six feet tall, the same as Iker. But Nathan’s presence was somehow bigger, more intense. Of course that was probably just to her, not the entire room.
As one of his big hands landed on her hip, more of those stupid memories pushed themselves up, including the one of her at his school’s prom. It had been so damn cliché, but they’d lost their virginity to each other after the prom. It was a sweet memory, one she’d always cherished. Despite the surreal quality of the situation, she wanted to lean into him, to soak up all of him. It had been so long since she saw him, since she ended things with him in the worst way possible, and it was difficult to believe he was here. She still felt guilty about the way she’d cut him out of her life so abruptly.
“The beard’s new,” she murmured as they swayed with what could have been a practiced rhythm. It seemed that years of separation didn’t affect that. Their movements might as well have been choreographed.
To her surprise, the hint of a smile played across those full lips. “How long have you been with Iker Mercado?”
“I don’t answer your questions, Miguel, until you tell me why you’re calling yourself—”
The grip on her hip tightened, a clear indication for silence, before he gently spun her in time with the steady beat. She was incredibly grateful for the simple three-step dance pattern. Unlike some of the complicated dances from earlier in the evening, this one she could do without thinking. Which was good because way too many questions invaded her mind. He was obviously being secretive for a reason, and she wanted to know why. Her mind circled back to the criminal angle, but she couldn’t make that work in her head. It just didn’t fit. Still, twelve years had passed. People changed.
They were silent as they danced, and though she figured she should probably wonder or care if Iker was watching them, she had eyes only for Nathan. But as she looked into his dark eyes, it was a reminder of all she’d lost. She was the one who’d ended things with him because of her own cowardice and deep-seated issues. She’d been so ashamed back then, so immersed in her own pain at what she’d lost that she’d brutally cut him out of her life. It was one of her biggest regrets.
Pain she thought she’d locked up bubbled to the surface, clawing at her insides. If she thought too hard or long about everything that had gone down between them, she’d slip into a funk and not be able to get out of it for a day or so. She couldn’t do that now.
Still moving in time with the music, she looked at his chest instead of his face. It made it easier to breathe.
“Are you going to say anything to him?” Nathan finally murmured.
She figured she understood what he meant. Would she tell Iker that his name was Nathan? She didn’t even have to think about it. No matter what, she could never betray him. It didn’t matter how many years had passed. He was the boy—now man—she’d lost her virginity to. The first person she’d ever loved. Hell, the first person who’d ever loved her, because her mother certainly hadn’t. “No, but you will give me answers.”
“Not here,” he said simply. Since he hadn’t said no, she understood he meant to tell her later. Which just piqued her curiosity even more. “You look beautiful,” he continued, his grip possessive.
Slight irritation popped inside her at the way he held her. “Thank you. You look good too.”
His lips quirked up almost playfully. “Just good?”
Seeing him almost smile did something strange to her insides. She should be pushing him for more answers but found herself giving him a half smile. “Would handsome make your ego feel better? Or maybe . . . pretty?” She snickered at the dark look he gave her. When they were together he’d gotten grief from plenty of the boys in her neighborhood for being “a pretty boy.” Until he’d kicked the ass of more than one of them.
“Are you and Mercado serious?” Nathan’s gaze grew even darker, all traces of amusement fading.
She shouldn’t tell him a damn thing. He wasn’t even using his real name. Still, she couldn’t seem to stop the truth from coming out. “It’s our first date.”
Though it was marginal, his grip on her relaxed. “Good.” There was a wealth of meaning in that one word.
“When do you plan on answering my questions?” Because she had plenty.
“Meet up with me after the auction.” He wasn’t even bothering to ask her, just ordering.
It pissed her off. Despite her curiosity, she pursed her lips and met his gaze dead-on. “If I’d ever had a mother who cared about me, I’m sure she would have told me not to meet up with strangers. And you, Miguel, are a stranger.” A stranger who’d seen every inch of her naked.
His jaw tightened in annoyance. “I’ll answer your questions, I swear.”
There was no real way she was just walking away after missing him and wondering about him for twelve damn years. She couldn’t even pretend not to be rabidly curious. “Can you remember my phone number if I tell it to you?”
He nodded, so she quickly rattled off her number. It was slight, but she felt him relax a fraction. As the song ended she stepped away from him, surprised at the feeling of loss as his arms fell from her. She quickly turned, making her way back to her date.
Iker was talking to two men, but he frowned over her head, likely at Nathan, as she made her way to him. She pasted on a smile for Iker when he met her gaze, though, hoping it looked real.
Unfortunately all her thoughts were on the man she’d left on the dance floor and the answers she’d soon be getting from him.
Excerpted from "A Covert Affair"
Copyright © 2016 Katie Reus.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Whether you are new to this series and/or Ms Reus’s stories, or a longtime fan, you are in for another rollercoaster ride of actions and emotions. In this one we have Nathan Ortiz, an undercover NSA agent who recently got injured on the job. He has recovered and is now back in his hometown of Miami to undertake a new mission. A mission that takes him to the girl he loved as a teenager, and has not forgotten even though she hurt him when she left him. Amelia Rios is now a successful restaurant owner, but she hasn’t forgotten Nathan, nor the secret she kept from him and the reason she left him. Now she seems to be a key factor in women that are going missing . As the plot thickens, so does the reignited relationship develops. Secrets must be divulged, trust must be earned , traffickers found, and women must be saved. But in the midst of this turmoil , will Nathan and Amelia find each other again and if they do, will they have a future? Aside from an engaging plot, and complex characters, I commend the author for highlighting the fact that human trafficking exists in a variety of forms. We all need to be aware of this and do what we can to help stop this atrocity. A very sensitive subject matter in which the author did an outstanding job in presenting to the listener. The narrator , Sophie Eastlake, did an excellent job in this performance. I was gifted this audiobook. The opinions expressed are solely my own.
A Covert Affair is a continuation of Katie Reus' successful Deadly Ops series. This series just keeps getting better and better with the addition of each installation. This one is the best yet! Amelia Rios and Nathan Ortiz are well developed characters and their story is about a second chance with the love of their life. They see each other 12 years later while she is on a date with another man. Their combustible heat, their devastating history, and the intrigue that is currently encapsulating them is more than they can walk away from. This book can be read as a standalone or as part of the series. Katie Reus keeps on giving us great reads that I don’t like to see end! I feel like the Deadly Ops series is her best to date. I read until I finished A Covert Affair at 3:30 AM, as I could not put it down and wanted to know what happens with Nathan and Amelia as they are some of the most likeable characters I have found in a long time.
After the "heroine" disobeyed the man putting his life on the line to protect her, I tossed it in the trash without finishing it. Feisty is one thing- stupid is a total turn off.
This is one second chance story I can definitely get behind. A tough, fearless heroine and a strong but slightly vulnerable hero get a second chance at happiness while facing off against a powerful adversary in this action-packed, suspenseful and passionate romance. NSA agent Nathan Ortiz's new assignment is a tough one. The mysterious disappearance of women in Miami has come to the attention of authorities and he's part of the task force sent in to investigate. Returning to Miami brings back memories of his first love and his half-formed plan to reconnect with her but he does not expect to find her at the center of his investigation and he's definitely not willing to sit by the sidelines while she gets further embroiled in the danger surrounding the case. Amelia Rios overcame a challenging upbringing to become a successful businesswoman and is always willing to give others a hand up, so when her restaurants are linked to the missing women, she's determined to find justice for them even at the risk of danger to herself and even though it means working side by side with the only man she's ever loved, the same man whose heart she broke. The chemistry between them is still as hot as it was in the past, but Amelia knows she has to come clean about the secret she's been keeping in order for her to have a chance at a future with Nathan. This is my first book in this series but I've read other series by Ms. Reus and as usual the story is solid, well-written and completely absorbing. Amelia is smart, shrewd and displays an amazing strength of character, willingly putting herself in danger to uncover the mystery behind the disappearance of the women. Nathan on the other hand is mostly rational except where it involves Amelia's well-being, then his inner caveman comes out to play, which I loved especially because she's up to the task of handling him, by being either soft or forceful when needed. I love that the connection between them remained alive in the twelve years they spent apart. I definitely will recommend this book to anyone looking to read about a show stealing and fearless heroine or a very great second chance story. This is really a stand-alone book because it completely focuses on the primary couple and only mentions characters from the other books in passing, so there is no compelling need to read the previous books before this one, but I would recommend reading the previous books (which I plan to, soon). Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Another fabulous story in The Deadly Ops series! A Covert Affair is a story of forgiveness and second chances. Amelia and Nathan were once childhood sweethearts but after a tragic event occurs Amelia cuts Nathan out of her life with no explanation. Years later she is a successful restaurateur and he is an operative for the NSA but neither have forgotten their first love and when Nathan is sent to Miami to investigate the disappearance of multiple women in the area he is shocked find the woman that he's never been able to forget on the arm of their prime suspect. This is one of my favorite Deadly Ops stories. Full of twists and turns, A Covert Affair was a fast paced read that had me hooked from page one so if you love stories with action, intrigue, heart breaking second chances at love and some serious smexiness then I highly recommend you grab a copy of this one! *I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This story started strong and stayed strong. I love this series. Nathan is finally back to work. And back in his home town. Girls are coming up missing. And are connected to Amelia Rios's restaurant. The one girl Nathan never got over. He knows deep down she is not involved. He will do whatever it takes to prove she is innocent. Amelia knows something is going on. When danger comes calling she has no choice but to turn to the one that she knows will protect her.
J: This was not one of my favorites by this author, but I can't quite put my finger on why. I can say that the story was too wordy which bogged down the action and suspense at times. While I did have a pretty good connection to the main characters, their "baggage" became repetitive and distacting. I have read and enjoyed many other books by this author but after waiting for it, this one was a bit disappointing.
A sexy, fast-paced, high-stakes, electrifying, heart-wrenching raw thriller "If you want to stop, tell me now," he said as he ripped open a condom wrapper. "Stop and I kill you." A COVERT AFFAIR by Katie Reus is romantic suspense at its finest with lots of depth and spice. This is the story of NSA agent Nathan Ortiz and restaurateur Amelia Rios. The characters are realistic and captivating with sizzling chemistry. They'd fallen in love as teenagers and then she'd dropped out of his life without explanation. Neither has been able to forget the other in the twelve years that have ensued. Now, fate has thrown them back together. Will long-held secrets blow them apart?. Our NSA friends were called to action when a long-time friend of Wesley's called in a favor as a young girl who lived in one of his rental properties had gone missing. When he looked into her disappearance, he was left with more questions than when he started as he found a myriad of girls with the same back-story who had dropped off the grid never to be seen again. As the team desperately searches for a despicable psychopathic criminal targeting young, unattached females, the reader will experience a shocking and complex tale set against a dangerous underworld backdrop. Even though this is the fifth book in the author's addictive Deadly Ops series, it can be fully enjoyed as a standalone. In fact, all the books in this series can be enjoyed individually, if that is your preference. There are recurring characters throughout each, so the books are linked, but not to where the story-lines converge. So, feel free to read them in any order you wish. Katie's books are always must-reads for me. She is one of my favorite authors and I should have known better than to start reading this tale as I prepared for bed... as it resulted in a sleepless night. Duh! There was no way I could stop reading it once I started. I would highly recommend this book, indeed this whole series, to anyone who enjoys sexy, fast-paced, high-stakes, electrifying, heart-wrenching raw thrillers. My full review will be posted at Reading Between The Wines Book Club. Please check it out there. 4 1/2 Wine Glasses!
WOW! WOW!! WOW!!! What an amazing romantic and suspenseful story from Katie Reus! I seriously sat down and read this book in one day. I COULD.NOT.PUT.IT.DOWN!! Nathan and Amelia stole my heart! This book is filled with ups and owns, twists and turns, and it is filled with scorching romance! I recommend this book to anyone and everyone, especially if you love romantic suspense! Seriously though….buy it!
I love me a good romantic suspense and Katie Reus is one of my go to Authors for this genre. Nathan and Amelia had a past that did not end well, Amelia pretty much just up and left without a by your leave. Fast forward 12 years and Nathan is investigating a case about missing girls in his hometown bringing back good and bad memories. Amelia seems to be stuck in the middle of this situation and it is unclear which way the bullets will fly. There was alot of ups and downs and twist and turns and i enjoyed the ride all the way! The books gets you to continue turning the pages wanting to know what next??? I had to read this in a couple sittings :( Not my norm but with this book I wanted to give it my undivided attention, it was THAT good. I didn't want to miss a thing! Now..:) The sexual tension was scorching! Amelia is sassy and stubborn and i understood how Nathan wants to shake her and kiss her at the same time which let me say once he gets going Whoooa it was super hot. Katie does not ever dissappoint in regards to her heroes. They are hot, smart, a tad less than actual caveman behavior But oh so HOT! This was another great read by an amazing Author. I can't wait until we see what else she'll give us next! ***Arc generously provided by the Author in exchange for an honest review***
Another great book in the series.
Young women are disappearing. What's happening to them? When a friend asks Wesley Burkhart for help, he sends his best trained operatives to investigate, he knows that they will find answers. Nathan is sent undercover. Suddenly he sees his first and only love, Selene. He still cares but he wants to know why she rejected him. Now they are working together to find the people responsible for these heinous crimes. Can they put the past behind them? This story kept me on the edge of my seat. The suffering and pain made my heart ache. I wanted justice for these women and I needed to know who is trying to hurt Selene. I knew that this Black Ops team would find those responsible and make them pay. Selene is a strong woman. She won't be cowed. She fights back because she cares. I love the chemistry that she and Nathan share. I wanted them to put the past behind them and have a future together. Miami provides the perfect location for passion and retribution. Katie Reus wrote a suspenseful tale that left me stunned. This book is amazing. It's going on my keeper shelf. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest and unscripted review.
After being wounded in action, NSA agent Nathan Ortiz comes home to Miami, eager to return to duty. But he doesn't expect his newest mission to lead him straight to the one woman he loved, lost, and has never gotten over. A beautiful, successful restaurateur, Amelia Rios enjoys giving back to her community, especially to struggling women. Then a woman she recently hired stops showing up for work, and, unfortunately, she isn’t the first to go missing. Soon Amelia finds herself thrust into a shadowy, dark world, working side by side with Nathan, the only man she’s ever loved. They must confront old feelings as they battle a ruthless enemy preying on the poor and weak. The heat simmering between Nathan and Amelia could mean a second chance for them—but first they have to survive. Review: In this next installment of the Deadly Ops series we get Nathan's story and it starts off not long after the last book in the series, time wise. This book like the others is filled with tension, action and suspense, but in this story we also have a second-chance love story. Nathan and Amelia were high school sweethearts, who were pushed apart by secrets. Now, Nathan is back and after almost being killed is sent on an op that puts him in contact with Amelia after something like 10 years. As Nathan works on his Op Amelia helps and the two draw closer and closer and the story gets hotter and hotter. It is quite obvious to all there are unresolved feelings and Amelia comes clean about the secret see has kept about why she sent him away all those years ago. The ending is very action packed and Amelia sure can kick some butt! Mystery about missing girls, serial killer on the loose, someone trying to hurt Amelia, action, drama, sexy times and romance, this book has it all and as always Ms. Reus delivers an excellent story that entertains. 4Stars *Received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Great Book! This is a great book; this is the fifth book in the Deadly Ops series by Katie Reus. Nathan Ortiz is an NSA agent, after being wounded in action he is eager to return to duty. What he isn’t expecting is for his mission to lead him to the woman he has never gotten over. Amelia Rios is a successful restaurateur and enjoys working in her community to help struggling women. When she finds herself in trouble she is not expecting to get help from her lost love Nathan. If you are looking for a great romance with suspense then you need to read this book. I am looking forward to reading the next book in this series.
This is the first Deadly Ops book I have read and as usual, I love Katie's books! I have read many of her other books and am never disappointed! If you crave suspense and steamy love between two strong individuals, this is the one for you. Amelia's back story is my favorite. I love the human side of her that comes out once she sees Nathan, it's amazing and so spot on. Nathan's thoughts of Amelia during his near death experience is so human, we all should be so lucky as to fall in love young and have it be "the one"! As the two come together to find out whose stealing young ladies, we watch as the love returns, old doubts haunt, and finally love wins out! A Covert Affair can be read as a stand alone and will leave you wanting to read the rest of the series, or perhaps you'd like to read about security hunks (Red Stone Series) or shifters (Moon Shifter)....any book you pick up will not be the wrong choice....Enjoy
Overall Rating: 4.5 Rockin’ ★★★★☆ Young women are disappearing in the Miami area! Are they part of a human trafficking ring or something more diabolical? Katie Reus, the queen of romantic suspense has once again created an action packed, sensual read that will keep the reader on the edge of their seat! In her new release, A Covert Affair she uses some characters from previous Deadly Ops Novels and introduces some new ones to weave a story of intrigue, drama and suspense. If you enjoy a good ‘who done it’ then you will love this engrossing mystery. There has only been one woman that he could never forget. A woman so determined and self-directed that you cannot help but admire her accomplishments. He walked away from her years ago, but has regretted it ever since. Now she is once again in his life. NSA agent Nathan Ortiz has been sent back to his hometown, Miami to investigate the disappearance of young women in the area. On his list of possible people of interest is Amelia Rios, his lost love. No way would this woman be a part of something like selling other women into slavery. Is this his second chance? Her entire life has been about pulling herself up out of life she was born into. Amelia has worked to create a new life for herself. She is now the owner of two successful restaurants in Miami and is a respected member of her community. There is however, one regret, Nathan Ortiz. He was her first love and the man she has never been able to replace in he heart. Now he is back and life just took on a dangerous vibe, someone wants to hurt her and young women that have worked in her restaurants are coming up missing! Will Amelia finally confront her past and reveal her secret to Nathan? There is more involved than just reuniting to star crossed lovers! Someone is out there stalking, kidnapping and making young women disappear. Nathan and Amelia will work together to find out who and what is going on. Excellent read and I look forward to reading more by this talented author.
NSA agent Nathan Ortiz is back on duty! After being injured while on duty, Nathan feels ready to go back into action. His case brings him to his home, Miami, a place that brings back a lot of memories and with them comes Amelia Rios, the woman he once thought was his soul mate. It’s been years since Amelia last saw Nathan. After breaking up with him and running away, Amelia has lost contact with the people in her past. Now, a successful owner of a restaurant, Amelia enjoys giving back to the community that helped her escape from a tragic past by helping women in need. When women form the community and her restaurant go missing, Amelia suspects that something’s wrong, especially when Nathan shows up pretending to be someone else. It’s not long before Amelia finds herself in a completely different world where it’s hard to tell who is lying and who is telling the truth! Nathan and Amelia will have to work together to uncover the mystery but to do that they will have to reveal their own secrets… A covert affair was mind blowing! I read it in a sitting and I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. Full of non-stop action, suspense, mystery and romance, the fifth book in the Deadly Ops series will keep you at the edge of your seat! Amelia and Nathan were two incredible characters. They have loved each other since they were children but then one day something happened and Amelia just disappeared. Nathan has no idea what happened then and it’s high time he got some answers. Amelia was such a strong, stubborn heroine but she had some serious trust issues. Spending time with Nathan helps her deal with those issues but she’s afraid that once she reveals her secret Nathan will never look at her again. A covert affair was incredible. The characters were realistic and the plot was mind blowing! I really enjoyed it. I can’t wait to see who is next. *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review*
Love, love, love! The Deadly Ops Series by Katie Reus is one of the best romantic suspense series I have read. Each book in the Deadly Ops series is unique with a creative, original plot but the same fantastic writing and some of the same characters from previous books. Phenomenal. A Covert Affair is a captivating, heated, romantic suspense that will pull you in from the beginning and won’t let you go until the very last page. Nathan and Amelia are the main characters of the story and after spending many years apart are thrust back together to uncover a mystery of missing women. When you read many books and there are second chance love stories, you tend to subconsciously guess on how the relationship will go. Yes, they usually get together in the end (it would suck if they didn’t) but the path to that forever love is the adventure. Reus does a remarkable job with this one. Nathan works for the NSA and isn’t able to tell Amelia about his job or the details of the case she is helping them with. He stays true to this role and while it does cause problems at times this makes their story a little more realistic. The intimacy between Nathan and Amelia is off the charts. You can feel the chemistry between the two and their emotions come right off the pages. Now let’s talk about the suspense aspect of the book. Wow. The plot in A Cover Affair is unique, but creepy and Reus always know how to scare the pants off of me with her villains, or the minions of her villains. The story was intriguing enough that I was flipping pages and thought I knew who the villain was but had no clue until the end. Reus describes the action scenes fantastically and offers just the right amount of technical description without slowing the story down or confusing the reader. I can’t talk about a Deadly Ops books and not mention Wesley. He has made an appearance in all the books and is just freaking awesome. I wish we could read a book about his personal relationship with a female and maybe he was in danger and his team (the guys/gals in previous books) all had to come together to save him? A Covert Affair is another amazing book in the Deadly Ops series. It can be read as a stand alone so if you haven’t read the others, you can still start with this one. If you like romantic suspense, with an excellent balance of romance and suspense, give A Cover Affair a read.
Riveting story that pulls the reader right into the action from page one! Nathan is in the middle of a terrorist attack and just when he thinks he’s about to die all he can think about is the one person he gave his heart long ago and wishes he could see her at least one more time. Amelia has tried to live a normal life as best she can since she parted ways with the love of her life but how can anyone forget someone like Nathan? I’ll be honest and say second-chance trope stories are not my favorite ones but it’s like Katie Reus knows how and where exactly to hit that nail on the head to make it go straight through and I just can’t help but love the end result. After a long separation, Nathan and Amelia meet again by chance, while Nathan is undercover and researching Amelia’s new beau, who may be involved in a red of human trafficking. Amelia, much to Nathan’s reluctance, gets involved in the undercover operation and since she’s no damsel in distress does an outstanding job and gets more than what she bargains for. Their relationship is steamy and there really is not much build up or romance but that really wasn’t needed because there was a past between them. It is made known from the start how much these two care for one another so their love never feels rushed or forced. I’ve loved this series from the beginning and what I’ve liked the most is that the heroes are not overbearing or overprotective; the characters feel very real, emotional, and intriguing; and each of the installments feel congruent with one another. I was gifted a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review
4.25 stars--A COVERT AFFAIR is the fifth installment in Katie Reus’s contemporary, adult DEADLY OPS romantic, suspense series. This is NSA agent Nathan Ortiz, and restaurateur Amelia Rios’s story line. A COVERT AFFAIR can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Told from several third person perspectives A COVERT AFFAIR follows the investigation into a series of missing women in the Miami area-most of the women with a connection to a women’s shelter or one of the restaurants owned by Amelia Rios. What ensues is the search for the people responsible, and the horrendous discovery of the truth behind the discovery of the missing bodies. The relationship between Nathan and Amelia is one of second chances. At seventeen and eighteen years old respectively, Amelia and Nathan had been high school lovers but life and a possible career in the military called Nathan away, and Amelia was forced to push away the only man she would ever love to keep his dreams alive. Fast forward to present day where our couple rekindle what they once had but Amelia kept secret the real reason for pushing Nathan away. The $ex scenes are intimate and intense. There is a large ensemble case of secondary and supporting cast including several of Amelia’s employees, as well as Nathan’s Special Ops agents and friends-Cade and Maria (Bound To Danger #2); Hannah and Dax (Chasing Danger 2.5).Levi and Selene (Shattered Duty 3) , and Karen Stafford (Edge of Danger 4). We are introduced to several of Miami’s players in the import/export trade, as well as the requisite evil whose own connections to Amelia are too close to home. A COVERT AFFAIR is a fast paced, exciting story of suspense, mystery, romance and a second chance at love. The premise is exhilarating and intense: the characters are imaginative and charismatic; the romance is provocative and sensual. The happily ever after fast forwards the story line a couple of months where we are witness to the start of Nathan and Amelia’s new life together. Katie Reus DEADLY OPS series is intriguing, realistic and seductive.
Second chance romance with action, suspense and mystery… This is the fifth book in the Deadly Ops series that can be read as a stand-alone. It’s been twelve years since NSA Agent Nathan Ortiz last saw the woman he loved and broke his heart for reasons he doesn’t know, she’s been on his mind since his last mission where he was hurt and faced his own mortality. Across the room while on an undercover assignment he has no doubt that the woman he sees is her and the man she’s with is the subject of his investigation. Introduced to her under an alias she doesn’t give him away but there’s no doubt that she knows who he is. The chemistry they once shared is still very much alive and now that he’s found her he wants answers. Restaurateur Amelia Rios is on her first date with a wealthy man she’s known for a while. Seeing the man she loved and ran away from years ago crossing the room headed in their direction brings back so many memories not all pleasant. Life has taught her to control her emotions and she hides her reactions to his presence from her date. She owes Nathan so she accepts his alias pretending they have never met yet inside the pains of her past are unsettling. She wants to know what Nathan’s involved in without having to answer what he’s sure to ask, he deserves to know but she’s not ready to tell him. Young women without family are disappearing from the Miami area with no trace, some worked in Amelia’s restaurants making her a person of interest as well as the man she’s currently dating who is suspected of illegal smuggling. Nathan doesn’t want to believe that Amelia’s involved but he’ll do his job, if guilty he’ll turn her in no matter how he feels about her. When Amelia learns that a woman she called friend is among the missing she’s concerned and passing a test is recruited to obtain information on her date which puts her in the path of danger and someone’s out to cause Amelia harm that may or may not be connected. Nathan takes protecting her above and beyond what’s necessary for the job and once it’s over he intends to get his answer to why she left him. This fast paced sexy second chance romance contained much action and suspense and an elaborate mystery with many unexpected twists, this reader couldn’t guess the villain. Nathan and Amelia were intriguing characters who hadn’t moved on from what happened in their teenage years. A love so strong doesn’t just die because the relationship ends. Amelia made mistakes in her youth that took her years to come to terms with, fate gave this couple a second chance bringing then together again. There were multiple points of view and cameos from characters previously met in the series. ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley.
NUMBER OF HEARTS: 3 1/2 Another good installment in Ms. Reus’ Deadly Ops series. I am not sure that this has been my favorite book to date. But I really enjoyed Nathan and Amelia story. I really enjoyed that A Covert Affair was a second chance romance story for Nathan. We have seen Nathan many time over the last four books. It was great to finally get a closer look at him. Amelia is great. She is tough and determined to be and do better in life. Which she has, but when Nathan walks back into her life things start to go south. I am looking forward to what is next in this series. Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley & Berkley Publishing Group - Signet in exchange for an honest review. This review is my own opinion and not a paid review.
Great addition to series. A Covert Affair is the next thrilling installment in the Deadly Ops Series by Katie Reus. This is the story of Nathan Ortiz. He has been a secondary character in many of the deadly ops books and I was glad to see he was getting his own story. Some characters from previous books are included in this book, however, you do not need to read the prior books to enjoy this one. Nathan works undercover for Wesley Burkhart of the NSA in a black ops capacity. A friend comes to Burkhart with a problem, a missing woman, not quite something the NSA normally gets involved with, but Burkhart is willing to look into this as a favor. His analysts find a disturbing connection and about fifty more missing woman. He sends in Nathan (who has just been cleared for duty after being injured on his last op). His first night in Miami, Nathan runs into his old high school flame, Amelia Rios, who is a person of interest in the disappearance. The attraction between Nathan and Amelia is still there. Nathan has long thought about Amelia but never got the courage to research her or try to find her. Amelia, in turn has also thought about Nathan during their years apart. When she sees him at the party, she does not out Nathan as not being who he says he is but she does tell him that they need to talk. After their “talk” Amelia volunteers to work with the NSA in a civilian capacity to try and obtain information on the disappearances. Things come to light from their past. There are some misunderstandings and mistrust between Nathan and Amelia. With someone still abducting women from Miami will Burkhart’s team find the responsible party? I was provided with a gift copy of this book by the publisher through NetGalley for an honest review. I also purchased the book.
Spotlight, Review & Excerpt: A Covert Affair: A Deadly Ops Novel, Book 5 by Katie Reus http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-4gl Publication Date: March 1, 2016 Genre: Romantic Suspense/ Contemporary Romance Reviewed by: Reading in Pajamas/ Donna Rated 4 Stars REVIEW: This was a tension filled action novel that I could not put down. A serial killer on the loose, attacks going on and romantic tension that kept me in knots. Amelia and Nathan made a good couple in that they just seemed to fit together even though they had issues to work through. The story was fast paced and really kept me guessing until the end and I love that in a mystery. I also enjoyed the hot love scenes between Amelia and Nathan and that they flowed with the story. The Deadly Ops guys are all hot of course and it’s fun wondering who will be next to find “the one”. *Review copy provided by Penguin in exchange for an honest review.
This book was full of non stop action! There is suspense, mystery and sexual chemistry that draws you in from the start and holds you to the very end. The story line is incredible and the characters are intense. I was captivated by this story and highly recommend this book and this author. Gifted a copy for an honest review