Never Surrender

Never Surrender

by Rosie Miles

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Overview

Police officer Maggie Sinclair prides herself on her independence. She doesn't need anyone, especially her ex-lover. Working undercover to expose a prostitution ring, Maggie rescues two teenaged girls-but blows her cover in the process. Now she's in deep, and the only person who can help her is the last man she wants to call...

Detective Quinn Keller remembers Maggie telling him Hell would freeze over before she needed him. He offered her everything, and she rejected him. Now he has the opportunity to show Maggie they're stronger as a team-even as their attraction becomes increasingly hotter. But this passion won't just bring them together or tear them apart...it could get them both killed.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781633751828
Publisher: Entangled Publishing, LLC
Publication date: 10/19/2015
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 269
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Rosie Miles has always been fascinated by cops. If she didn't hate guns with such passion, she would have joined the force. Instead she writes about the cop behind the badge, and the loves that challenge them.

Rosie lives in Australia with her forever husband. She enjoys exploring the vastness of her country looking for the next story location. To unwind, she pulls on her joggers and pounds the paths around the nature reserve that's her back garden.

Read an Excerpt

Never Surrender


By Rosie Miles, Laura Stone

Entangled Publishing, LLC

Copyright © 2015 Rosie Miles
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-63375-182-8


CHAPTER 1

Fortitude Valley, Queensland, Australia

Hell's frozen over. Meet me tonight. 9:00. De'lisle's.

Quinn scanned Maggie's text message for the twentieth time then slammed his phone shut and shoved it into his pocket.

He flicked back his cuff and checked his watch. Ten o'clock. He scoured the room. Where is she?

Edgy, he turned back to the bar, lifted his glass, and downed the neat bourbon. All around him, patrons laughed and talked, confident of anonymity in the muted lighting of the exclusive club. Young waitresses threaded their way between plush, crescent-shaped booths surrounding low, circular tables.

The barman slid a bowl of salted nuts in front of Quinn. "Another drink, sir?"

Quinn nodded then resumed scrutinizing the room. Not for the first time, his eyes were drawn to the back, where through a partly opened door he could see a spiral stairway disappearing upward. Two burly security guards paced back and forth in front of it.

Quinn's eyes narrowed when a girl in a skimpy, red dress sashayed toward the door. She looked barely fifteen, yet the bouncers made no move to stop her from climbing the stairs.

At the sound of a glass hitting the bar, he spun back around. A fresh drink sat in front of him. Quinn tossed down a twenty. Leaning against the black marble bar, he touched the chilly stone. He hated the feel of the stuff. Cold. Lifeless. Like mortuary slabs. Not a good thought.

He checked his watch. Again. Fifteen after ten and still no sign of her. He clenched his jaw, levering himself away from the bar. He would not be played for a fool.

Not again.

He'd finish his drink then leave.

Before he even lifted the glass, the pianist wound up his number with a flourish and, through a smattering of polite appreciation, announced, "Ladies and Gentleman, for your enjoyment this evening, the management of De'lisle's presents Miss Cassie Lee Wynters!"

Enthusiastic applause broke out as the spotlight swung to the back of the room. Quinn's heartbeat kicked harder when a shadow stepped forward and materialized into a tall, willowy woman who moved with easy grace, despite four-inch stilettos.

He couldn't drag his gaze away.

His fists clenched.

Twelve damned months of silence. He'd become convinced she was dead and then prayed he was wrong.

He sucked in a deep breath. Every moment of that year, she'd haunted his thoughts, his dreams, and as hard as he'd tried, exorcising any part of her had proved impossible. It had almost cost him his career.

Quinn's fingers found the glass. He tossed back the contents, the bourbon burning all the way down. With concentrated effort, he placed the empty tumbler down on the hard, cold marble rather than hurl it into a wall, his gaze fixed on her the whole time.

Twelve months ago, she'd flung his concern back in his face and stormed out, her final words — I'll need you when hell freezes over — seared into his memory. He thought he'd never hear from her again. What had rocked her first major undercover assignment that she'd contacted him? His pathetic, sentimental heart beat a little harder. What do I care? Whatever it is, it's not my concern. Let vice handle it.

He'd wait around just long enough to tell her that to her face.

* * *

Cassie Lee Wynters fixed a smile to her lips as she wove between the tables making for the stage. Beneath the fake name, fake smile, and stage makeup, Detective Maggie Sinclair hid worry. She was in trouble. Big trouble.

Had she done the right thing? Had she ruined her career? She didn't know. She wanted to get the hell out of here and help those young girls get back to their families. Sucking in a deep breath, bogus smile firmly in place, Maggie acknowledged the pianist as she stepped onto the dais and turned to face the audience.

Under the full house lights she quickly scanned the room, looking for Quinn. She wouldn't blame him if he'd just laughed and thought told you so, when he got her text. That last fight ... She briefly shut her eyes.

Don't go there.

She stepped toward the microphone, searching the room one last, desperate time. No sign of Quinn, but in the front row Conrad Adams, owner of the club, sat deep in conversation with his head of security, Paul Benson. Maggie's lips parted in a small gasp. But he's supposed to be away 'til the end of the week. I'm going to heave. Her heart pounded so hard breathing hurt.

He knows. They're probably plotting my death. Perspiration beaded between her breasts. She gripped the microphone so tightly her knuckles ached. I can't do this.

Shut up, Maggie. And breathe. You have no choice! Her grip relaxed, and she straightened her spine. You're a professional, remember?

That thought came to her from a recess deep in her soul. Soothing. The notes of her first number silenced the room, and the rhythm eased her frantic heart. She met Conrad's obsidian gaze and managed a bright, professional smile as the lights dimmed. The words of the song fell from her lips, and she was grateful. Until she'd seen Conrad, her biggest fear had been that, with all the crazy thoughts rampaging through her head, she wouldn't be able to perform.

The music stopped, and Maggie bowed, searching beyond the blinding glare of the spotlight, still hoping to see Quinn's familiar face. But it was impossible to distinguish features.

Apprehension coiled around her like a cold, nasty serpent. Why hadn't Inspector Roberts shown up at the safe house? The message she'd left on the secure line was clear. Now, because he'd let her down, she'd had to arrange a meeting with Quinn to beg his help. In her heart she'd believed he would come. Perhaps he had come but not waited.

After another bow, the spotlight dimmed, and the house lights came up. A last frantic scan of the audience proved fruitless. Maggie's breath stalled in her lungs. Conrad waited for her at the bottom of the dais. Panic nipped at her. Does he know about the girls? Damn it, damn it. Be calm. You will handle it. Just breathe.

With her smile stretched to cracking, she faced the owner of the De'lisle, who reached for her hand and pulled her snug against him. Maggie steeled herself not to recoil from the feel of his body against hers.

"You were wonderful." Conrad pressed a kiss to her cheek. "Join me at my table. There's someone I want you to meet." His hand at her elbow did not offer a choice.

Maggie balked, staring into his face. A flash of something ugly, deep in his soulless eyes, crimped her spine. "Conrad. I need a costume change. Give me fifteen minutes." Her voice was soft, her smile persuasive.

His grip tightened. Displeasure laced his tone. "Fifteen minutes. Don't keep me waiting."

Maggie's hand cupped his jaw. "Thank you." She turned and walked on dangerously wobbly legs toward her dressing room. That earlier nip of panic now burst into a fully fledged bite ripping into her nerves.

Within the sanctuary of her room, she slumped heavily against the door and looked at her terrified reflection in the mirror across the room. "You are so screwed," she whispered. For a long moment she just stared before hauling in a lungful of air. Suck it up, Maggie girl. You've got a job to finish.

She crossed the room to stand in front of the well-lit makeup mirror. She dipped a sponge into powder to dab the shine off her nose then hesitated. A prickling on her nape, a sensation of being observed, filled her with sick apprehension.

Her gaze slipped around the room searching for a concealed camera. The same old movie posters gave color to an otherwise-drab paint job. Nothing in the room had changed. Was she paranoid?

Maggie strode to the wardrobe, grabbed a black-sequined sheath, and slipped behind the Japanese screen. If there was a camera, she wouldn't give a peep show.

She gathered her wits as she dressed. You don't know why he's back. It could be anything. But she knew. She'd been made. You're imagining it. Making assumptions. That look in Conrad's eyes. She shivered. She had to get out. Fast.

Someone knocked at the door. Maggie swallowed the nervous lump in her throat and scoured the room, looking for something she could use as a weapon. Nothing. Damn. Smoothing the sheath down over her body, she stepped around the screen and gave the mirror another glance. She pinched her cheeks to chase away a chalky pallor and bit her lips for color.

Another knock. Harder this time. Squaring her shoulders and denying the frantic urge to run, Maggie crossed the room determined to tell whoever it was to get lost. She yanked the door open and froze.

"Hello, Maggie." The deep, rugged tone was a soothing balm to her grazed heart.

Quinn.

With curls. She'd only known him with his head shaved. He looked so ... different. Lord, those eyes, molten gold. Fire and heat. Watching her. What did they see?

A failure? A woman who'd chosen her career over him then stuffed it up? Get a grip, girl.

He'd come, and he'd stayed, and she was grateful. Her first instinct was to grab him and drag him into the privacy of her room. Then reality set in. If she was being watched and her room was bugged, she couldn't talk to him there. Or in the doorway, either. She gnawed on her bottom lip, searching for an alternative.

Quinn leaned on the wall opposite her door and crossed his arms over his massive chest. Sweet Mary, he'd bulked up. His crisp, white business shirt stretched taut across broad shoulders. Even better, his sheer bulk effectively blocked the entrance to the hallway, which meant no one in the club could see her talking to him. She stepped into the hall and pulled the door shut. If her hunch was right, she had a few minutes before someone came looking for her.

"I can't talk to you, not here." She curled her fist against her side to stop herself from touching him.

"So why ask me to come?"

"It was stupid. I ..." She looked deep into his eyes and gulped. Her insides knotted. With excitement? Fear? Desire? It was stupid. No, stupid was too tame a word. Insane was more like it. She hadn't thought his closeness would affect her after twelve months apart.

Had he missed her? She had hoped he'd contact her somehow, but he hadn't. After their last fiery argument, she didn't blame him. Pushing those thoughts aside, she dragged in a calming breath and stared into his strong, welcomed face.

"I really need your help, Quinn. Please." She held his gaze for a heartbeat before scrutinizing the limited area. The feeling that someone was about to pounce on her made breathing an effort. "Will you meet me later?" Her voice barely rose above a whisper.

"Where?"

"Maxi's."

He nodded.

"I can't give you a time. But I promise I'll —"

"Is everything all right, Cassie?" a too-smooth, too-cultured voice asked.

Maggie squeezed her eyes shut for an instant, hiding her fear from Quinn's sharp gaze. With her shoulders back and chin up, she eased past his strong body to the owner of the voice behind him.

"Yes, Conrad. Mr ...?" She turned back to Quinn. "I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name," she said, her voice a notch higher.

"Keller."

Maggie's lips curved. "Mr. Keller was telling me how much he enjoyed my show."

Conrad smiled, revealing faultless teeth. "I'm afraid this area is private. No guests allowed." Quinn met Conrad's hooded gaze. "It's almost time for your next bracket, Cassie. Let's go."

Maggie held out her hand to Quinn, and he reacted instantly, swamping it in his fist. "Thank you," she said. "I hope you'll come watch my show again. Good-bye." She turned back to Conrad and entwined her arm with his. "So, who's this person you so want me to meet?"

"A business associate who's very interested in you."

She leaned against him as they walked. "Then as soon as I've finished my next bracket, introduce me."

Quinn walked beside them into the cabaret room. Maggie turned to Quinn, smiled, and said, "Please stay and enjoy the rest of the show." She turned and stepped up to the dais and watched as Conrad's head of security, Paulie, escorted Quinn to his seat at the bar.

Three hours later, back in her apartment, an exhausted-but-pumped Maggie carefully applied her disguise in front of the large mirror. Long, flowing strokes of kohl, combined with navy eye shadow, altered the shape of her eyes. Mascara darkened thick, false lashes to black. A pale complexion was emphasized with an even lighter foundation, and deep-red lipstick colored the generous pout of her mouth. She flicked a brush through a short, copper-tinted wig then picked up a fine, gold chain and fastened it around her neck so the ankh nestled between her breasts.

Be careful, the voice in her head whispered persistently while she dressed. Her gaze skated around the room. Have they bugged the apartment? Was there a camera? Were they watching? She shook her head. No. There was no prickling on her nape, no sense of sick apprehension. Still she couldn't quiet her thoughts. They know. They're watching. A stranger stared back at her from the mirror. She looked as conspicuous as a nun in a brothel, which was good, because no one would see her. They would look at her, desire her, but they wouldn't see her. Feeling slightly more confident, Maggie picked up her coat, slipped her keys into the pocket, and hit the streets.

Cool breezes fanned her face and helped soothe her nerves as she strutted along the footpath toward Maxi's. It had taken thirty minutes, but she was sure she'd escaped the apartment without being seen, or recognized, to be more precise. She continued walking, ignoring blunt male stares.

A car pulled alongside her, the passenger hanging out the window. "Hey, baby, how much for all of us?"

She stopped and turned her head. Three men — no, boys really, no more that seventeen or eighteen — all leering at her. Maggie sighed. Just kids who should be with their girlfriends in the backseat trying to get for nothing what they wanted to buy from her.

"Five thousand." Her smile widened as the sultry tone purred from her.

"Scrag. Bet you're not that good." The car screamed off leaving burning rubber and obscenities thick in the air.

Another dozen steps. Nerves trampled Maggie's insides like stampeding elephants. Almost there, where Quinn would be waiting. How was he going to react to her handling of the investigation? What if he didn't believe her? And what about ... Don't go there. She bent her head and kept walking.

She rounded the corner, and Maxi's sign blinked in welcome. In one of the oldest parts of Brisbane, Maxi's still flourished amongst dark, shadowy alleys and even darker buildings.

Maggie stopped, heart leaping into her throat. Silhouetted by the blinking light, he sat on the bench outside, head bowed, hands hanging loosely between his knees. Relaxed? No, primed to explode, more likely. Anxiety gnawed at her insides. Had she thought of everything? So much rested on her shoulders, but there was too much at stake for all the victims for her to pull out now. She moved slowly toward Quinn, more nervous than when she'd faced Conrad earlier, because far too late, it occurred to her she wasn't exactly sure how Quinn would react to her predicament.

Deep breaths, Maggie. Deep breaths.

CHAPTER 2

Quinn listened to the crisp tap-tap of heels on the pavement. Until twenty minutes ago he'd been inside nursing a bourbon. Normally Maxi's was packed to the rafters and music boomed out into the street. But the crowds were thin tonight. Was that a good or a bad thing? His instinct had been lousy lately. Once he could feel danger at twenty paces and had trusted those feelings. Inspector "Screaming Buttons" Roberts had taught him, go with your gut. And he had, saving his skin more than once.

He wanted to rise, meet her, but he was afraid, of what he wasn't sure. She needed him, and that was what counted. She had sent for him, and like the fool he was where she was concerned, he'd come running. Maybe he should have handled it by the book and alerted his superiors. Maybe. Gut instinct had decided him against it.

The tip-tap of heels halted directly before him. Then the heartbeat of the street ceased, as though the world stopped breathing.

His gaze started at the four-inch stiletto heels, slid up over well-shaped calves and thighs that stretched on until they met the hem of her short, short skirt. Heat crawled over his skin, and his breath caught. Beneath her open coat, welcoming hips and a tiny waist beckoned him. He scanned upward until his eyes feasted on full breasts failing to hide behind a slinky, black camisole. He didn't need to look further. He knew.

"Maggie." Her name sounded so good on his lips. For a mere second, the memory of their taste filled him with naked longing for another time, a happier time, but he pushed it away. She hadn't called Quinn-her-ex. She'd called Quinn-the-cop.

"Maggie's dead," she snapped.

"Really?" He quirked a brow. "You look a hell of a lot like her."

"I look like a two-bit whore. Trust me, Maggie's long gone."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Never Surrender by Rosie Miles, Laura Stone. Copyright © 2015 Rosie Miles. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
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.

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Never Surrender 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
TheSassyBookster More than 1 year ago
NEVER SURRENDER was a suspense-filled and fast-paced surprise, a bit predictable at times but entertaining nonetheless. It took several tries for me to get into it, but once I did, it was tense ride to the end. Maggie Sinclair has been undercover for the last twelve months as part of a police investigation into an underage prostitution/sex slavery ring and has been successful in getting two of the girls out but her suspicion that her cover has been blown has her reaching out to the one man she trusts - her ex-lover and fellow police officer, Quinn Keller. Quinn Keller thought that he had seen the last of Maggie Sinclair when she left to take an undercover assignment after a spectacular blow-up over her decision to go undercover, so he's very surprised to get a request for help from her but his feelings for her won't let him ignore her plea for help. Maggie's suspicions are correct, she is in danger and pulls out of the assignment in the nick of time. However, she is being painted as a traitor in league with the criminals and what follows is a race to stay ahead of the bad guys, uncover the identities of the cops who are in cahoots with the criminals and clear Maggie's name. Both Maggie and Quinn were really likable and strong characters. Quinn was easy and straightforward and a protector at the core of him. He was so protective of Maggie. I really liked that in spite of how they broke up, Quinn was quick to respond to Maggie's call for help and put himself on the line for her over and over again. Maggie was a bit more complicated. She was strong and fearless and passionate. She always struggled for her independence and was quick to challenge anyone and anything that threatened her independence but her time undercover blunted her sharp ends a little and exposed her vulnerable side. I love suspense and most times will overlook the romance or lack of it is the action is gripping enough, but I was glad that that was not the case here. Maggie and Quinn's struggle to rebuild their relationship and adapt to the changes one year apart had brought was front and center and I'm glad that Quinn was accepting of her and her secrets. Overall, this was an enjoyable story and I would recommend it to anyone who loves fast-paced action with their romance. 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.
babyssmile More than 1 year ago
Quinn ran his finger along her lips. They were full and soft and enticing. Her deep, smoky gaze never left his as he leaned across the center console and pressed his mouth against hers. Her flavor kicked his heart rte up a notch. His lips nibbled hers and swallowed her sigh. She was like a sweet treat too long denied. Quinn-sexy Maggie-pretty and sweet What do you get when someone from the not so distant past comes to your forefront with mystery, a hidden sexuality that your heart has always craved? When one asks for help from you knowing that you are the only one holds ones heart in the palm of your hand. Can you deny such person with the hopes that your heart will not completely tear in two? The journey between Quinn and Maggie with a past between them is coming full circle with a bit of turmoil and a whole lot of hiding. Coming together to get to the bottom of what is happening with Maggie and the mystery that she brings with her is hard for Quinn to fathom but at the same it is easy to get caught up in the awe of her. The question isn’t will Quinn help her but how much is he willing to let go of his heart once again for her. The sex between this couple is hot and gets hotter along the way. The author brings mystery, love, heartfelt warmth to this one of a kind read that will capture your heart from page one and hold it in a vice till the very last word is read. Major Kudos Happy Reading
aprilrenee1976 More than 1 year ago
#TeamQuinn all the way Undercover Police officer Maggie Sinclair & Detective Quinn McQuade are police officers and were lovers until a huge fight broke them up 12 months before. But Maggie contacted Quinn in desperation, in fear for her life. Young Girls are being trafficked and Maggie needs help in getting this stop since she is the one working undercover to get the information to shut down prostitution ring and discovered the young girls angle. She thinks there is a leak and she ends up calling the one man she swore she never would again—her ex-boyfriend. There is no one she can trust and there is so much evil all around. Maggie doesn’t know who to trust and when she sees underage girls she needed to get them out and when she called, her Ex- Quinn does show up and when he realizes how deep things are and how bad, he joins her to get to the bottom of the mess. The suspense and the passion between the two is fantastic—and the flow of the story is wonderful. I enjoyed how Maggie was so devoted to making things right. Between her and Quinn, between things in her past…and I loved how alpha Quinn was and yet, he knew he needed to repair things between him and Maggie…..wow, I loved how the story ended. I truly enjoyed everything about this story. The twists and turns kept me on the edge of my seat thru the whole story. My Rating: 4.10 stars **** ***A gifted copy was provided by the publisher for my honest review****
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
An exciting suspense filled romance that kept me entertained. Slightly predictable but overall a good read. When Maggie Sinclair left without a word a year ago for another undercover assignment, Quinn McCade didn't think he's ever see her again. Now she's calling and asking for his help. He should say no but his heart won't let him. Maggie is desperate, obviously, she called Quinn. The one man who probably hates her more than any one else. He's also the only one she can trust. She's been working over a year to bust up a prostitution ring but after removing two girls, her cover is blown and she needs Quinn's help. It's full of suspense and romance and it's a book I would definitely recommend.
bouncyberthaCR More than 1 year ago
3 - "There was never anything ordinary about our relationship." Stars. This is the first book I have read by Rosie Miles. It was well written and pretty entertaining in an action packed sort of way. But oddly the author had a really weird knack of giving away exactly what was going to happen next in the previous paragraphs. I didn’t mind it so much as the story was pretty fast paced, and not only are you reading of the reconnection between Quinn and Maggie after she has spent the last 12 months undercover, but they are also dealing with the fact that her cover has been blown, the bad guys are after them, and one of their colleagues is sabotaging them as well as trying to frame Maggie, every step of the way. Distance and time might have separated them physically, but she’d lived in his heart, his thoughts, constantly. I really liked Quinn, sexy, brooding and not afraid to put himself on the line for the woman he loved, he went above and beyond in his efforts to protect her and help her clear her name. ”Kiss me forever.” Maggie was more of a struggle, she contacts Quinn after 12 months of radio silence to ask for his help, then pretty much disagrees and disregards every idea and suggestion he has initially. She did sort of work out as the book progressed that is was ok to lean on someone else again after so long being on her own and in a really high stress situation… but she was almost too ‘gung-ho’ for me for most of the story. Entertaining enough, and it held my interest, Never Surrender is the type of book that keeps you engaged and invested whilst reading, I would certainly look to read more from Rosie in the future. ARC generously provided via Netgalley, in exchange for the above honest review.
Linda__ More than 1 year ago
This is an engaging and quick read. Maggie is an undercover cop and Quinn is her former boyfriend and also a cop. They broke up when she went undercover and Quinn did not approve. When Maggie realizes that she needs help, she turns to Quinn. Quinn responds immediately and they are thrust into a battle to solve the crimes and for their very survival. This book was filled with action and romance, but the character just didn't grab me. They were likeable, but just didn't make me feel invested in them. This is highly subjective and the reason for 4 stars instead of 5. If you enjoy romantic suspense, this is a great choice