Hillary Wright has always been a magnet for Mr. Wrong. Her latest left her in trouble with the law, and to clear her name, she's agreed to an undercover stingas the "date" for infamous Troy Donavan. The notorious hacker is now a government good guy and a sexy billionaire playboy. Troy has a reputation as the sort of man she's vowed to avoid, and his secretiveness adds fuel to Hillary's distrust. But with his kisses like molten sin, her fierce resistance is melting. And being sensible in the face of such overpowering desire is just not an option.
About the Author
USA Today bestseller Catherine Mann has books in print in more than 20 countries with Desire, Romantic Suspense, HQN and other Harlequin lines. A five-time RITA finalist, she has won both the RITA and the Bookseller's Best Awards. Catherine resides in Florida with her aviator husband, their four children and a menagerie of pets. For more information, visit: http://catherinemann.com
Read an Excerpt
Hillary Wright seriously needed a distraction during her flight from D.C. to Chicago. But not if it meant sitting behind a newlywed couple intent on joining the Mile High Club.
Her cheeks puffed with a big blast of recycled air as she dropped into her window seat and made fast work of hooking up the headset. She would have preferred to watch a movie or even sitcom reruns, but that would mean keeping her eyes open with the risk of seeing the duo in front of her making out under a blanket. She just wanted to get to Chicago, where she could finally put the worst mistake of her life behind her.
Hillary switched from the best of Kenny G before it put her to sleep, clicking through the stations until she settled on a Broadway channel piping in "The Sound of Music." Passengers pushed down the aisle, a family with a baby and a toddler, then a handful of businessmen and women, all moving past her to the cheap seats where she usually sat. But not today. Today, her first-class seat had been purchased for her by the CIA. And how crazy was that? Until this month, her knowledge of the CIA only came from television shows. Now she had to help them in order to clear her name and stay out of jail.
A moan drifted from the brand-new Mrs. Somebody in front of her.
Oh God, Hillary sagged back into her seat, covering her eyes with her arm. She was so nervous she couldn't even enjoy her first visit to Chicago. She'd dreamed about getting out of her small Vermont hometown. Her job as an event planner in D.C. had seemed like a godsend at first. She met the exciting people she would have only read about in the news otherwisepoliticians, movie stars, even royalty.
She'd been starstruck by her wealthy boyfriend's lifestyle. Stupidly so. Until she allowed herself to be blinded to Barry's real intentions in managing philanthropic donations, his lack of a moral compass.
Now she had to dig herself out from under the mess she'd made of her life by trusting the wrong guy, by believing his do-gooder act of tricking rich associates into donating large sums of money to bogus charities, then funneling the money overseas into a Swiss bank account. She'd proven herself to be every bit the gullible, smalltown girl she'd wanted to leave behind.
As of today, her blinders were off.
A flash of skin and pink bra showed between the seats.
She squeezed her eyes shut and lost herself in the do-re-mi refrain even as people bumped past. Focus. Will away the nerves. Get through the weekend.
She would identify her scumbag ex-boyfriend's crooked banking acquaintance at the Chicago shindig. Give her official statement to Interpol so they could stop the international money-laundering scheme. Then she could have her life back and save her job.
Once she was back in her boss's good graces, she would again be throwing the kinds of parties she'd wanted to oversee when she'd first become an event planner. Her career would skyrocket with her parties featured in the social section of all major newspapers. Her loser ex would read about her in tabloid magazines in prison and realize how she'd moved on, baby. Maybe she would even appear in some of those photos looking so damn hot Barry would suffer in his celibate cell.
She pinched the bridge of her nose against the welling of tears.
A tap on her shoulder forced her out of her silly self-pity. She tugged off an earbud and looked over at a suit. A dark blue suit, with a Hugo Boss tie and a vintage tie clip.
"Excuse me, ma'am. You're in my seat."
A low voice, nice, and not cranky-sounding like some travelers could be. His face was shadowed, the sunlight streaking through the small window behind him. She could just make out his dark brown hair, which was long enough to brush his ears and the top of his collar. From the Patek Philippe watch to his edgy Caraceni suitall name brands she wouldn't have heard of, much less recognized, before her work with highend D.C. clients.
And she was in his seat.
Wincing, she pretended to look at her ticket even though she already knew what it read. God, she hated the aisle and she'd prayed she would luck out and have an empty next to her. "I'm sorry. You're right."
"You know what?" He rested a hand on the back of the empty seat. "If you prefer the window, that's cool by me. I'll sit here instead."
"I don't want to take advantage." Take advantage? The cheesy double entendre made her wince. A moan from the lovebirds a row ahead only made it worse.
"No worries." He stowed his briefcase in the overhead before sidling in to sit down.
Then he turned to her, the light above bringing him fully into focus And holy cows on her hometown Vermont farm, he was hot. Angular. But with long lashes that kept drawing her gaze back to his green eyes. He was probably in his early thirties, gauging from the creases when he smiled with the open kind of grin that made him more approachable.
She tilted her head to the side, studying him more closely. He looked familiar, but she couldn't quite place him . She shook off the feeling. She'd met so many people at the parties she'd planned in D.C. They could have crossed paths at any number of places. Although, she must have seen him from a distance, because if they'd met up close, she definitely wouldn't have forgotten him.
His seat belt clicked as the plane began taxiing. "You don't like flying."
"Why do you say that?"
"You want the window seat, but have the shade closed. You've already plugged into the radio. And you've got the armrest in a death grip."
Handsome and observant. Hmm
Better to claim fear of flying than to go into the whole embarrassing mess she'd made of her life. "Busted. You caught me." She nodded toward the row in front of her just as one of the seats reclined providing too clear a view of a man's hand sliding into the woman's waistband. "And the lovebirds up there aren't making things any more comfortable."
His smile faded into a scowl. "I'll call for the flight attendant."
He reached for the button overhead. She touched his wrist. Static snapped. At least she hoped it was just static and not a spark of attraction.
Clearing her throat, she folded her arms over her chest, tucking her hands away. "No need. The flight attendant's in the middle of her in-flight brief" she lowered her voice "and giving us the death glare for talking."
He leaned toward her conspiratorially. "Or I can kick the back of their seat until they realize they're not invisibleand that they're being damned inconsiderate."
Except now that he was so close, she didn't notice them. Her gaze locked on the glinting green eyes staring at her with undisguised, unrepentant interest.
A salve to her ego. And an excellent distraction. "I guess we can live and let live."
"Although, honestly, it doesn't seem fair the flight attendant isn't giving the evil eye to the handsy twosome."
"Maybe they're celebrating their anniversary." She snorted.
"And you're trying to tell me you're a true believer in flowery romance?" She took in his expensive suit, his dimpled smile and his easy charm. "No offense, truly, but you seem more like a player to me."
A second after the words left her mouth, she worried she might have been rude.
He just laughed softly and flattened a hand to his chest.
"You think the worst of me. I'm hurt to the core," he said with overplayed drama.
Her snort turned into a laugh. Shaking her head, she kept on laughing, tension uncurling inside. Her laughter faded as she felt the weight of his gaze on her.
He pointed to the window. "We're airborne now. You can open the shade and relax."
Relax? His words confused her for a second and then she remembered her excuse for nerves. And then remembered the real reason for her nerves. Her ex-boyfriend. Barry the Bastard Bum. Who she was hoping to help put in prison once she identified his accomplice in Chicagoif she didn't get offed by the bad guy first.
She thumbed her silver seat belt buckle. "Thank you for the help."
"Troy." He extended his hand. "My name is Troy, from Virginia."
"I'm Hillary, from D.C." Prepping herself for the static this time, she wrapped her fingers around his, shaking once. And, yep. Snap. Snap. Heat tingled up her arm in spite of all those good intentions to keep all guys at bay. But then what was wrong with simply being attracted to another person?
Her ex had taken so much from her, and yes, turned a farm-fresh girl like her into a cynic, making her doubt everyone around her. Until she now questioned the motives of a guy who just wanted to indulge in a little harmless flirtation on a plane.
Damn it, there was nothing bad about chatting with this guy during the flight. He had helped her through her nerves about identifying Barry's accomplice at the fundraiser this weekend. A very slippery accomplice who had a way of avoiding cameras. Very few people had ever seen him. She'd only seen him twice, once by showing up at Barry's condo unannounced and another time at Barry's office. Would the man remember her? Her nerves doubled.
She desperately needed to take full advantage of the distraction this man beside her offered. Talking to Troy beat the hell out of getting sloshed off the drink cart, especially since she didn't even drink.
"So, Troy, what's taking you to Chicago?"
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A great read! ** spoiler alert ** An Inconvenient Affair is about Troy, a bad boy turned good guy and Hillary, a woman who has been hurt by past relationships and has trouble trusting. Despite Troy's issues of growing up with no one who cared enough to put him first and Hillary's issues with her alcoholic mother and then a series of boyfriend disasters, they take a chance and explore the chemistry brewing between them. From Chicago to Washington, D.C. and several places in between An Inconvient Affair will keep you hooked from th...more An Inconvenient Affair is about Troy, a bad boy turned good guy and Hillary, a woman who has been hurt by past relationships and has trouble trusting. Despite Troy's issues of growing up with no one who cared enough to put him first and Hillary's issues with her alcoholic mother and then a series of boyfriend disasters, they take a chance and explore the chemistry brewing between them. From Chicago to Washington, D.C. and several places in between An Inconvient Affair will keep you hooked from the first meeting to the last kiss. I give it an A+ and will definately add it to my keeper shelf and I look forward to reading the next book in The Alpha Brotherhood series.
Hillary and Troy made a good couple in An Inconvenient Affair. I enjoyed Catherine Mann's style of writing bringing them to life.
3 STARS love the story line. the characters are charming. This is a harlequin desire so thier are a lot of hot stuff in this book. Hillary Wright is on a airplane heading for Chichago where she will be working on identifing her ex-boyfriend's partner is stealing money from a charity to help with scholarships. She will be working with CIA and Interpol agents. This way she can prove her inocence. Troy Donavan at age 15 broke into the Pentagon computer and shown a lot of corruption going on. Because of his age he was sent to a milatary boarding school. When he turned 21 was approached to working with Interpol by he his boarding school general. He also created computer games and software to become a billionare. He was supposed to meet Hillary at the fundraser tonight to work with, but he wanted to meet her early so he got the seat next to her on the plane. He knew she was pretty but not that hot. They flirted the whole way but Hillary told him she was not going to date him. Before they could depart the plane Troy name was called out and he was handcuffed and taken off the plane. Which was a stunt for the charity and good cover for him. He played rich playboy to the press and did assignments about once a year. Did more work on computer for them more often. Hillary could not believe the guy she was flirting with was Troy Donavan the rich playboy who had got into trouble all those years ago. At the Black tie event the last item up for bid was Troy. He was now on stage in tux still handcuffed up for auction was this weekend as his date. He went for almost 100,000. The winner was his assistant and he told the audience that he was known for not following the rules and said this way he got to pick the date of his choice for the weekend and in the spotlight went up to Hillary and picked her. They both have issue with thier parents, and still have a lot of issues to workout. I was given this ebook to read in exchange of honest review from Netgalley. 08/01/2012 PUB. Harlequin Harlequin Desire
ABOUT THE BOOK: Hillary Wright has always been a magnet for Mr. Wrong. Her latest left her in trouble with the law, and to clear her name, she's agreed to an undercover sting—as the "date" for infamous Troy Donavan. The notorious hacker is now a government good guy and a sexy billionaire playboy. Troy has a reputation as the sort of man she's vowed to avoid, and his secretiveness adds fuel to Hillary's distrust. But with his kisses like molten sin, her fierce resistance is melting. And being sensible in the face of such overpowering desire is just not an option. REVIEW: *laughing* This book was fabulous. It has all the action you need, on all three levels: Action, Romance, and Comedy. I found myself drawn completely to this piece and unable to put it down. The character development didn’t seem pushed and was quite natural. The budding romance was even better. I loved the conflict these two faced and found myself rooting for each of them. Troy’s bad boy ways were the perfect fit into this piece and the read was very easy to get through. I can’t wait to see more from this series and have added Ms. Mann to my “must-read-list.” Four out of five stars for a job well done!
This story centers on Troy Donovan: the Robin Hood Hacker. When he was 15 he hacked into the DoD and started exposing corruption. Instead of sending him to juvie, the judge sent him to military reform school where he met the other members of the Alpha Brotherhood. His current assignment is to help identify a dangerous thief and money-launderer at a glitzy Chicago party. At the same time, Hillary Wright is trying to clear her name as the scheme involved a former boyfriend. The only way to convince the CIA that she had nothing to do with the scam, Hillary must identify a man that few have ever laid eyes on. Troy has the advantage of knowing they are both there for the same reason. Determined to protect Hillary from the unnamed danger, Troy finds ways to get close to Hillary. First he meets her on the plane to Chicago. Then he “buys” himself at the bachelor auction he is roped into participating in, only to ask her to be his date for the weekend. Hillary is convinced that she only falls for bad boys. Her latest attraction to Troy only reinforces this idea in her head. Initially resistant to Troy’s attempts she finally convinces herself to just enjoy the adventure. The action takes them from Chicago to Costa Rica with brief glimpses of France and Monte Carlo. As with all Desires it moves quickly. However, Ms. Mann managed to pack a lot of story between the covers. I love sprawling interconnected stories like this. We get brief glimpses back to the Landis / Renshaw families and hints of what might be to come with the rest of the Alpha Brotherhood. I thoroughly enjoyed this one and can’t wait for the next.
An Inconvenient Affair by Catherine Mann is an exciting start to another sizzling series. Hillary Wright can pick Mr. Right if her life depended on it. She is drawn to every Mr. Wrong that crosses her path. Hillary’s latest ex has her on the wrong side of the law. To clear her name she goes undercover to find her ex’s partner in crime. Hillary has assistance by playboy and hacker extraordinaire Troy Donavan. Troy Donavan has over come an unloving childhood to be a powerful man. He turned a juvenile punishment into a life long service to the government. Troy has a reputation of being a ladies man and this plays into his cover with Hillary. When Hillary’s safety may have been compromised Troy whisks her away to his island home. Costa Rica is an island paradise that draws Hillary and Troy together. Spending hours in the sun and water has them exploring more then the natural beauty of the island. Once they give into their desires their undercover assignment grows beyond just being on the job. Hillary doesn’t fully trust this new relationship and when she catches Troy in a lie she flees. But once she has time to think it through its her turn to go after the man she has come to love. An Inconvenient Affair is another stellar story by Catherine Mann. She packs a lot of story in a small format and you get the full package deal with her books. Hillary and Troy’s passion is off the charts and the island background adds another layer to the story. Looking forward to the next Alpha Brotherhood character.
Great characters and C.M. wrote about some of the other men of the brotjerhood to get us hooked and waiting for next book. Hope it is as good as this one. Read and enjoy. I did
Catherine Mann has a great new series. The Alpha Brotherhood series begins with "An Inconvenient Affair", Troy. A billionaire computer guru, was sent to military school at 15, because he hacked the Department of Defense computers, exposing corruption. He grows up to run a major computer company and helps out the CIA and Interpol on occasion. Hillary grew up in small town America, the daughter of an alcoholic mom, where appearances were everything. Hillary left her hometown to make it big in the Washington DC charity events planning world. Things go to hell in a hand basket when her boyfriend turns out to be embezzling and money laundering through charities that she planned events for. He's arrested, but not talking, but she knows who is secret partner is. That's what leads her to meet her billionaire soulmate. Courtesy of the CIA and Interpol. She's flying to Chicago to try to identify the partner at a weekend charity gala. Troy is flying there as well, for the same reason. He knows who she is, she doesn't know who he is. Thus the action begins...They are on an exciting adventure traveling the world and falling in love. They spend much of the book in his exotic Costa Rican hideaway keeping each other safe from revenge. It's a sexy, hot fantasyland! You can never go wrong with a Catherine Mann novel. My only problem was my own. I've been reading only ebooks for two years and this was in paperback. So strange! Anyway, Read and enjoy!