NYPD sniper Matt Donovan is in Hell. Instead of driving his best friend's little sister home from college, he's stuck with her roommate—a fresh-faced ray-of-sunshine with a body that makes grown men weep. There's no way he'll allow himself to taint the little vixen, no matter how hard she tries to tempt him, so he resigns himself to the longest—and hardest—drive of his life.
Matt's obvious attraction suits grad student Lucy Mason just fine. She had no idea her brother's best friend was so deliciously hot. Knowing he'd never have his wicked way with his buddy's sister, she lies about her identity and seduces him. But Matt's no fumbling college boy. His desires run deep—and dark—and he wants to teach Lucy what wicked really means.
Matt's demanding appetites only make Lucy want more. But when her cover's blown, he's furious—even as his hunger for her becomes insatiable. Matt can't trust anyone, least of all himself. And he knows all too well that darkness always destroys the light…
Each book in the Line of Duty series is STANDALONE:
* Protecting What's His
* Officer Off Limits
* Asking for Trouble
* Staking His Claim
* Protecting What's Theirs
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
Staking His Claim
A Line of Duty Novel
By Tessa Bailey, Heather Howland
Entangled Publishing, LLCCopyright © 2014 Tessa Bailey
All rights reserved.
The studio audience inside Lucy Mason's head gave a collective, sympathetic awww.
"This was supposed to be our week, Sasha." Lucy picked up her iced coffee and plunked it back down, never taking her gaze off her best friend. "Ill-advised exploits, questionable fashion choices. Educational museum trips." She mumbled that last part, since it hadn't exactly been part of their monthlong discussion. "I can't believe you're blowing me off for a dude."
Sasha winced. "I know. I know. It's just ... Carter."
"Carter." Lucy's brow wrinkled. "Is this the same Carter who made a pass at your mom when she came to visit?"
"That was a misunderstanding."
"I'll just bet." She moved her drink in jerky circles on the table, letting the tinkling ice cool it even further, hoping a sip would cool the fire in her throat, brought on by the need to shout. Minutes before she and her roommate were set to depart Syracuse University, where they'd both, at long last, completed their respective master's programs, and her plans were being crushed by a guy who'd once pissed himself on their couch after too much tequila. Unacceptable. As if this violation of the "chicks before dicks manifesto" weren't bad enough, her brother, Brent, who'd been their designated ride to New York City, had bailed at the last minute.
God, I'm sorry, Luce. Something came up with Hayden's family. She's presenting her father with some fancy-ass award and if I don't go, she'll castrate me.
Her brother wasn't one to hold back. Even if it meant talking to his sister about his balls. Going to live with him in their childhood house in Queens at the age of twenty-five was going to be a real scream. Until she became gainfully employed and found her own place, that is. Thanks to her growing list of potential employers alphabetically arranged in an Excel spreadsheet, it wouldn't be long. In the meantime, she'd have to set some ground rules, like no testicular talk. Or making out with his fiancée anywhere her eyeballs might encounter it.
In his place today, her brother had sent his friend Matt Donovan. Another cop. One she'd never met, but based on Brent's suggestion to bring oodles of reading material for the drive, she gathered Matt was not a sparkling conversationalist. It hadn't bothered her much, knowing she'd have Sasha to chat with in the backseat, but now that option was no longer on the table. Truth be told, she felt a little slighted.
Okay, a lot slighted. Her brother and best friend making for greener pastures within twenty-four hours of each other didn't do fabulous things for her ego. They hadn't meant it that way, she rationalized. They loved her. Still, it was two more instances she could add to her list of times she'd come in second place. Lucy Mason, salutatorian. First runner-up at the debate team finals as an undergrad. Hell, just this week she'd been named second in her class, among the other language majors. While these were certainly accomplishments, sometimes it felt like no matter how hard she tried, someone always beat her by an inch. Sasha and Brent ditching her for their respective lovers was no different.
Pity party of one, your table is ready.
Trying to dispel the useless feeling, she took a long pull on her iced coffee. Sasha had a healthy glow to her deep-brown skin, excitement shining in her eyes that hadn't been there this morning. Just because she hadn't had sex since Lost was on the air didn't give her the right to be a begrudger. "So what are your plans instead? You better be doing something amazing. Seriously, I want goose bumps."
Sasha did a little dance in her seat, accompanied by a squeal. "We're borrowing his cousin's house at Cayuga Lake. Just me, Carter, and a handful of naughty DVDs."
Lucy perked up. "What? Like porn?"
"No. Like Cruel Intentions and Wild Things. Movies where girls make out so as to guarantee a good evening for yours truly." Sasha tilted her head. "By the way, you have never looked as enthusiastic in your life as you just did when porn entered the equation."
"Lower your voice," Lucy whispered.
"Porn-o-graph-y!" Sasha belted out, opera-style, drawing every eye in the coffeehouse.
Lucy shook her head. "I'm so not going to miss you."
"Liar. You will pine for me."
"If you drown in Cayuga Lake, I will clear out your sex toy stash as promised, but that's all I can guarantee you. Not a single line of poetry will be penned in your honor."
"At lease I'll die happy." Sasha rose and came to join Lucy on the bench, where she crushed her in a tight hug. "Hey, I'm really sorry. You know that, right?"
"Yeah," Lucy murmured into her friend's hair. "Now go on. Get."
Sasha pulled back to study her. "Listen, if I die in an unfortunate water skiing accident or too many orgasms —"
"Or both." Sasha nodded. "Don't dump my stash. I hereby bequeath all manner of pleasure machines to you, my pasty, studious little friend."
Lucy feigned surprised pleasure. "Me? I-I don't know what to say."
"Say you'll put New York on its knees this week." Her friend's expression suddenly turned serious. "Don't use my bailing as an excuse to hole up with a stack of books. You've earned some fun, graduate. Have at it."
Lucy stared after Sasha thoughtfully as she exited the coffee shop. Her friend knew her too well. Initially, when Sasha canceled on her, there had been a tiny little punch of relief in her chest that she was off the hook. That she wouldn't have to put herself out there as planned, but could continue her two-year streak of hiding from the unknown. Safe in her self-imposed introversion. She hadn't always been this way. No, no. Her first four years in college had been spent exploring the Mason daredevil gene she'd inherited. Right up until she'd organized an on-campus bonfire in protest of censorship in their textbooks, landing her in jail overnight. Hello wake-up call. Needless to say, her brother had lost his shit and been forced to re-mortgage his house to bail her out. Not to mention covering the fines she'd incurred.
Since her night in the big house, she'd spent her days and nights busting her ass to make her family proud, instead of inspiring ceaseless rounds of head-shaking every time her name came up. Making sure Brent knew she didn't take for granted the tuition he worked two jobs to provide. In the very near future, she would have a job that would finally ease the pressure from his shoulders. She could finally pitch in to support her parents and her other older brother's family while he fought overseas. Her family would take pride in her, instead of taking cover every time she entered the room.
That staunch dedication to success hadn't left room for much more, and she'd allowed her social life to dwindle until Sasha's recaps of Saturday nights were her main source of entertainment. As soon as she had a steady income and a place to call her own, she'd been planning to remedy that oversight. Then again, maybe Sasha had a valid point. What better place to kick off her new lecture- and homework-free life than a week in New York City?
The bell tinkled over the coffee shop door, drawing Lucy's attention. Had Sasha changed her mind? Or maybe she'd forgotten someth —
Lucy's thoughts drained, as if her brain had turned into a colander. Every muscle in her body coiled tightly as a man stepped right out of every woman's fantasy and somehow materialized in the coffee shop. Before anything else registered, she noticed the way he walked. He moved like he was walking toward a lover. A lover he planned on thoroughly roughing up before making her scream obscenities into a pillow. The sensual, detached movement of his hips was a complete contradiction to his eyes and jaw, however. They were set firmly, making him look ruthless. Unmovable.
Dark hair, dark expression, dark clothing. He was just ... several shades of dark. Except for his eyes, she amended as he coolly scanned the shop. His eyes were light gray. In the midst of all that darkness, they stood out like silvery marcasite.
She couldn't stop her gaze from tracking downward, over broad shoulders, a wide chest, and a heavy leather belt that rode low on his waist. As if a good stretch would reveal his happy trail and that cut vee leading into his jeans. Speaking of jeans, good Lord, the man's ass was a bona fide work of art. As he strode toward the nearby counter to place his order, his work boots not making a single sound, those tight buns set off a choir of rejoicing angels in her head.
Then he opened his mouth to address the barista and the angels' mouths snapped shut.
"Can you tell me where 39 Juniper Street is located?"
Huh? Lucy's spine went rigid. That was her address. Perhaps he was looking for someone else in her building? She and Sasha shared a two-bedroom in an off-campus dwelling, in which there were at least twenty other apartments. That had to be it. This work of male perfection could not be the boring, stuffy ex-military sniper her brother had sent to squire her down to the city. Brent's description could not have painted a different picture. No, this guy had to be looking for someone else.
The barista behind the counter looked like she'd just gone for a swim in a lake full of stupid. "What?" She cleared her throat and smiled. "I mean ... what?"
Buns of Glory sighed. "Thirty-nine Juniper. My GPS says it's nearby, so I thought I'd walk the rest of the way. Can you point me in the right direction?"
Another barista joined her. "What?"
Now Lucy sighed on his behalf. Communication must be difficult when your ass whittled the opposite sex's vocabulary down to one word.
"Never mind, I think I can track it down." He gave a faint smile and Lucy swore she could hear panties hit the floor. "I'll take a medium coffee to go. Black."
Not the sugar-and-cream type. No surprises there.
Barista Number One appeared to finally regain her senses. "Are you visiting someone at the college? I haven't seen you here before."
He handed her a crisp bill. "No, I live in Manhattan. I'm just here to pick up a girl."
Oh shit. He is Matt Donovan. That was Lucy's first thought. Her second? If her brother had condoned her spending hours in a confined space with this gorgeous man, he had quite a lot to learn about her.
"So ... are you picking up just any ol' girl or a specific one?"
Oh, for the love of double Spanx.
"Lucky girl." Barista Number Two with the gem! "She must be pretty special to drive all this way."
Matt took the paper coffee cup she offered. "Actually, from what I hear, she's kind of a nuisance."
Inside Lucy's head, the studio audience broke into a barrage of oh hell no's. She sat up so straight in her booth, she would have feared spinal damage if she could manage to think past her annoyance. A nuisance? On top of her double-ditching that day, the word was like water being poured over hot sauna rocks. They caused her anger to sizzle and snap dangerously. Somewhere underneath all that, a stab of hurt existed, but she didn't want to acknowledge that just yet.
He picked that moment to turn and lock eyes with her across the ten feet separating them. She had the satisfaction of watching his coffee cup pause halfway to his mouth before continuing its journey toward sculpted, masculine lips. Long-denied heat trickled through her, cutting right through her bout of self-pity. Desire. It had been a long time since she'd felt it. Perhaps that was why it tumbled through her midsection now after having been raveled up for years. As if he'd projected the image into her head, she saw those distracting lips feasting on her neck. A neck that had surely turned candy-apple red thanks to the direction of her thoughts.
Feeling this insistent attraction to her brother's best friend was inconvenient at best. Nor could she act on it. Based on what she'd been told about him, he was the honorable type. The voice of reason in their dude foursome. He would never make a move on "Brent's little sister." Especially when said little sister had been painted as nothing more than an irritating pest.
Unless, of course, he didn't know who he was putting the moves on.
Matt still watched her closely, but his expression showed no signs of recognition. Apparently Brent hadn't passed on a formal dossier complete with recent photos, because Matt was looking her over in a very on-limits kind of way. And boy oh boy, she liked it. Her nerve endings were tingling, nipples pebbling underneath her tank top in a way that had nothing to do with the air-conditioning. When his attention shifted to her bare legs visible beneath her cutoff shorts, warmth settled between her thighs. Was it her imagination or had he just growled at her?
Lying about her identity would be wrong. So very wrong. She couldn't do it. Could she? Her ethics professor would shit a brick. Not to mention, something told her this man wouldn't take kindly to being duped. Her only alternative was to stand up right now and introduce herself as Lucy Mason before it was too late. It would guarantee she arrived safely in Queens, untouched. Hot and bothered with no weapon to combat it, save the five-fingered one attached to her wrist. No closer to shedding the boredom wrought by the last two years.
It sounded horrible, but she was woman enough to admit that, on top of wanting this insanely hot man, her ego needed a little boost. She'd been dateless for too long, she'd been ditched by everyone, and now she'd been labeled a nuisance. Maybe just this once, she could get hers and say to hell with the consequences, the way she used to. The dormant daredevil inside her stretched and looked around sleepily.
Lucy pushed back her chair and stood. Pasting what she hoped was a flirtatious smile on her face, she walked toward Matt and extended her hand. "I couldn't help but overhear that you're looking for 39 Juniper."
He grunted into his coffee. Not exactly the reaction she'd been looking for. No matter, she'd just have to try again. After all, she hadn't gotten to be second place in every competition under the sun without learning a few tricks along the way. Garnering her courage, she ran a hand through her curls and cocked one hip. His teeth sank into his lower lip. There. Now she had his attention. "I'm Sasha, Lucy Mason's roommate. Looks like you're here to give me a ride."CHAPTER 2
Hop on, baby. I'll give you a fucking ride.
The thought blew swift and furious through Matt's consciousness before he banished it, locking it safely behind a steel-reinforced door. This girl, the one who stood in front of him looking like a virgin sacrifice sent to tempt his sanity, wouldn't last five minutes with him before she ran off screaming. He knew that, and yet he couldn't look away.
Her deliciously unpainted mouth moved and words came out, but it took his brain an extra second to catch on. One hell of a feat, since he prided himself on staying razor sharp at all times. His training had drilled the importance of being consistently alert into his head. His profession demanded it. Yet in under a minute, this girl had managed to test that will, effectively cutting off all blood flow to his brain and sending it straight to his groin.
Fuck, she'd made him hard. In public, no less. Before uttering a single word.
On some level, he resented that.
She had spoken, however, and was now looking at him awaiting a response. What had she said? Sasha. Wants a ride. Focus, Donovan. You're acting like one of your friends, drooling over some girl, when you know that shit isn't for you. Will never, ever, be for you.
Matt took a sip of his coffee to buy himself some time. Now he remembered why the name Sasha rang a bell. Lucy Mason's roommate. The roommate he'd agreed to share a vehicle with for the next couple hours on the drive back to New York City. Jesus. At least he'd have Brent's pesky sister riding shotgun, preventing him from doing something patently unwise. Like pulling over at the first opportunity and divesting this girl of her frayed jean shorts in his backseat.
Get a handle on it. Now. Before you can't.
Reluctantly, he dragged his gaze away from the embodiment of temptation before him and skimmed a glance over the coffee shop, looking for an entirely different girl. One resembling a linebacker. With a brother the size of a small mountain, Lucy couldn't be too far behind. No luck. As far as he could tell, there wasn't a single fart joke- –telling Brent look-alike among this crowd. Although to be fair, he didn't have a clue what Lucy looked like, nor had he had time to find out. Driving to Syracuse had been a last-minute favor to his friend, one he'd grudgingly accepted under threat of being forced to endure an afternoon of wedding plan details. He hadn't been able to get behind the wheel fast enough.
"She's not coming," said the temptation, her voice low and smoky. "Lucy, that is."
Excerpted from Staking His Claim by Tessa Bailey, Heather Howland. Copyright © 2014 Tessa Bailey. 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.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Let me put it this way: this book was so HOT, I actually had to check my hands for burn marks by the end of it. Tessa Bailey knows how to bring the steam and her latest book in the Line of Duty series is no exception! She has created two very sexual characters that deviate from the sexual norms and give us a scorching, tantalizing journey of how just how far each of them is willing to go when it comes to one another. After having graduating from college, Lucy Mason is heading back to New York City to start the next chapter in her life. Having been ditched last minute by her best friend Sasha, she now must make the trip alone- with her older brother's best friend at the wheel. Meeting Matt Donovan in person is an experience that Lucy will never forget. Nor is overhearing him mention that he heard she was a bit of a nuisance. She is hurt by this, as she does feel that way when it comes to her family. After getting into some trouble, Lucy gave up her wilder ways and buckled down to do what she needed in order to help her family. Having Matt Donovan eye her in the coffee shop like he wants to devour her from the inside out, launches her into a lie so he will continue looking at her in that way. Yet Lucy has no idea what looms just under the surface with Matt. She finds out his desires run darker and instead of shying away from him like most women do, she embraces his darker side and finds she's a bit more wicked in her tastes than she originally thought. Of course, there's only so long that Lucy can keep up the act of being someone other than herself. Living in New York, where she's bound to meet up with her brother's friend again, she knows she needs to come clean about her true identity, but doesn't. If there's one type of Matt Donovan can't stand- it's a liar. He is angry and upset once he finds out just who made that mini road trip with him. He knows he should stay away from Lucy for a number of reasons and yet he finds himself seeking her out, even after she had lied to him. While this bordered on stalker, I actually really liked how Matt would show up (as she left her itinerary in his car). Seeing Matt's playful side with Lucy is really sweet and by far my favorite sweet scene of the book is the FM. (Guess you'll have to read to find out what that is!) I liked Matt's character, but he drove me a little crazy with the self-deprecation. He is the one who constantly pushes Lucy away and then pulls her right back in again. He knows it's wrong to sneak around with her behind her brother's back, but most of all he's insistent she won't be able to withstand the darkness within him and will turn heel and run for the hills. Women have been disgusted by Matt's deviate sexual nature in the past, leaving him a bit self-conscious about his approach. He looks at Lucy and sees goodness and light and he knows spending time with him will only drag her down and he would resent himself for taking that light away from her. Yet Matt is the one who constantly hurts Lucy with his words (or lack thereof), not his actions. She is all for the mixing of pleasure and pain, and likes him being in control. However, Matt has a really hard time reconciling that this beautiful, wonderful girl could really want to be with him and give in to his needs. I enjoyed this story quite a bit, but I did feel there were a few points towards the end that seemed a bit rushed for me. Matt spends most of the book fighting his inner demons about how to deal with Lucy and I felt like I missed the falling in love part. We went from blind attraction and lust to love and while I do believe he absolutely loves her, I just felt we missed those moments where we got to see him stop and realize that he wanted to fight for her and not against her. Despite that minor issue, I really enjoyed Matt and Lucy's story and fans of the Line of Duty series will really oooh and aaah over that adorable epilogue!
Smoking smoking hot! Tessa Bailey, you are the Brazen sexilicious queen. All of your books pull me in right from the beginning and always have me fanning myself. Staking His Claim is no different, it starts right with hotness, turns into to explosions, and ultimately has an ending that has you happier than pie. Matt has always been the one of the group who kept to himself, the mystery man... but a dang sexy one. When we meet Lucy, younger sister of the delicious Brent Mason, you immediately see how different she is from Brent. Yet at the same time I loved Lucy just as much and she reminded me a lot of myself. At first with these two, I have to be honest and say I thought Matt was a little too intense for his own good but watching these two end up being so perfect for each other changed my mind. Just one more Tessa Bailey couple I have come to adore. Overall, I just loved this book all around! Tessa Bailey absolutely never disappoints. Staking His Claim is sexy, cute, fun, eventful, and it's always awesome to see the gang from past books! Make sure you definitely buy this one!
After reading ALL of Tessa Bailey's previous books, my expectations were very high. She does not disappoint! You are hooked from the 1st page to the last, and then left wanting more. She has a knack for creating characters that feel like they're your friends. The witty, smart-ass comments the characters make leave you laughing hysterically. The men in her books have the perfect combination of caring, tenderness, sexuality, and are just plain smoking hot! The series should be called Scorching Hot Alpha Males 'R Us! Keep' email coming Tessa!
Lucy falls for Matt the moment she sees him. To get closer, she lies about her name. So, when Matt finds out, he's not happy. He's already struggling with his past. The story is just so amazing how they go back and forth with their own struggles. I just felt the ending was blah, there was such a wind-up on how it could go, the erotic scenes were tastefully done, but I just felt like they left out pieces...
Alpha male, smart open female, HOT HOT love scenes what more can you ask for. Loved all the brazen books from this author.
We've drooled over Derek, been tempted by Troy, devoured Daniel and were bowled over by Brent. And now it's Matt's turn. Silent, brooding, moody Matt. Our last enforcer of the law is a sniper. He handles his weapon with confidence, precision and perfection. 10 pages in and I was in a trance on the sofa sighing. 10 pages! With no hope for me, I knew I was a goner as the phrase "the quiet ones are the the worst" was created for this man. He is a complete contradiction of himself; protective yet vulnerable, strong yet insecure and dominant yet reticent. But Lucy Mason gets him in every possible way. Brent's sweet fearless firecracker of a sister is challenging, strong and unleashes the parts of Matt that he has desperately tried to keep hidden. She exasperates him, he intrigues her and this is what makes them such a wonderful couple with an amazing chemistry and an enthralling journey that is paced perfectly between knee-quivering panty-busting hot and heart-stoppingly touching. If Tessa Bailey writes it, I will read it. She has consistently proven she has an absolute gift of bringing us a man to fall head over heels for, a lady you would want as your best friend and antics together that will make you heart, and many other places, flutter. Not one of her books has been subpar and if you haven't read the Line of Duty series, go do so now because every single one has been that outstanding, it's criminal. Along with the previous 4 in the series, this is an absolute keeper.
Reviewed by Kim for Read Your Writes Book Reviews Staking His Claim is the first book by Tessa Bailey I’ve read. I will definitely be reading more of her books! To say I didn’t know what to expect was an understatement. I mean, this is an Entangled: Brazen book. I’ve read those before. This book is unlike any Brazen book I’ve ever read. HOT and INTENSE aren't even the right words. You need something more to describe this book. The book had me when I saw that Matt was a sniper with the NYPD. I mean really what else do you need? Matt Donovan is one of Brent Mason’s best friends. When Brent is unable to pick up his baby sister (Lucy) and her roommate (Sasha) up from grad school, he convinces Matt to pick them up for him. At the very last minute, Sasha decides to ditch her week with Lucy in New York to spend it with her boyfriend. When Matt finally arrives to pick up the girls, he inadvertently insults Lucy. Regardless of this, she feels an instant attraction to him as him to her. Lucy knows that Brent would never sleep with his best friend’s sister, so she lies and tells him that she’s Sasha. Things quickly heat up for these two until they are unable to control themselves. As with most lies, the truth is revealed and this happens fairly quickly in the book. Brent and Lucy are left trying their best to fight the attraction between them but consistently fail. Besides the fact that Brent doesn’t know about them, Matt is fighting his own demons that his friends don’t know about. In the end, it’s Matt’s need for dominance and control that could be the end for these two. As characters, I loved Matt and Lucy. Lucy has the wrong opinion of what her family thinks of her, which sometimes affects what she does. Matt is blinded by her strength and passion. Matt is the hero that every woman dreams of. He’s flawed but wants to live a better life after falling for Lucy. My only complaint about the book is that as much as I loved Matt, I found him to be too domineering, aggressive, and rough for my taste. Source: Publisher
First time reading this author. Will definitely read more. Enjoyed to the fullest, kept me engaged to the end.
So as a lover of the Brazen line I jump at the chance to review their books. And when I talk about fave series in the Brazen Line the Line of Duty books always come up. So when I picked up this book for review it had big shoes to fill. I loved the previous books and OMG I loved this one too. This was an amazing book that had me hooked from the start. Fast paced sexy and oh so tortuous everything I love in a book. Matt had the sexy tortured hero thing down pat and I loved that he let Lucy wake him up. If it wasn't for one scene at the end of the book that I found a little unrealistic this would have been a 5 star book. Overall i give it 4.5 out of 5
## Seriously? Tessa Bailey hits another one out of the park. How does she do it? No freaking clue. But man, am I glad she did. I have loved and I mean loved all her previous books (my favorite being "Protecting what's his") and this one is no exception. I adored this couple. They were scorching hot together. Once again, this book has fabulous sex scenes! I loved that Matt was so intense in the bedroom. Ms. Bailey's sex life must be off the charts (is it hot in here?). Another thing I treasure is that each of her books are so vastly different even though they are part of a series. Oh and thank you Tessa for not writing Matt as a man-slut like most authors do today. Man that sh*t gets old. Most importantly, whenever I'm in a book slump (several sucky books in a row) I simply pull up one of Tessa's books and re-read and all is right in the world again.
Tessa Bailey at her 5 star BEST!!! One of the things you come to expect when you read a book by Tessa Bailey is that it is going to be good... And this one is no exception. From the very beginning you are drawn into the world of the hot ESU men and for me I could not put this book down. This is the story of NYPD Sniper Matt Donovan and ladies let me tell you this man is probably one of the hottest character in the series. He is asked as a favor to his buddy Brent to go and fetch his sister Lucy and bring her back to NY for him. One look at Lucy and Matt is immediately attracted to her. Lucy feels the connection as well and decides to pretend to be her best friend as she knows there is no way her brothers best friend is gonna make a play for her. What ensues is a wicked hot encounter in a crummy motel where Lucy lets go of her inhibitions and submits to Matt in a very naughty and decant way. Matt likes it rough and he likes to be in charge. When he discovers that Lucy lied to him about who she is, he is angry and hurt and decides to keep away from her. Problem is he just cant seem to stay away and is drawn in like a moth to a flame. This is their story and it is hot, hot and did I say freaking HOT!!! Tessa Bailey at her best and of course 5 awesome stars!!!
I've been a fan of Tessa Bailey since her first Brazen release with Entangled publishing and loved each book in turn, but I have to say that Matt's story is my favorite to date. Ms. Bailey does an amazing job of revealing Matt's dark desires, and the struggle he's undergone to suppress them. Just when he thinks he'll never meet a woman who understands his needs,in walks Brent's baby sister, Lucy. Lucy is a perfect match for him, and it's so refreshing to see the way Ms. Bailey allows Lucy to acknowledge and indulge in her own desires in an honest and straightforward way. As Matt reveals his brand of pleasure, Lucy discovers a few surprising things about herself. Ms. Bailey keeps the reader on the edge of her seat...in more ways than one with this very emotional, extremely sensual love story, and while I know she can do it, I'm quite frankly wondering how she'll top this one with her next release. Two thumbs up, Tessa! Very well done indeed. I received an ARC from the publisher in return for an honest review...and ladies, this is as honest as it gets. Want a tortured hero with a body to die for and a way of loving that makes your mouth water? This is your book.
Staking His Claim is the fifth, and sadly the final, book in author Tessa Bailey’s Line of Duty Series. This is a series I had fallen in love with from the very first book. I was beyond lucky to read an early copy of this last installment and I have to say….Tessa ended it with one of the best books in the series. Finally finished with grad school, Lucy Mason is ready to get on with her life and enjoy some time off with her brother and her family before diving into career life. Being thought of a nuisance by her older brother too many times to count, she was on a mission to prove him wrong by being a grown-up and helping him out and returning the favor of helping her though grad school. Of course, this would require one last favor from him….asking his fellow NYPD buddy, Matt, to give her and her roommate a ride from school back home. Easy peasy, right? Not exactly. Her roomie bails and when Matt walks into the coffee shop to pick her up she finds herself in way over her head in lust with one of the most delicious guys she’s ever laid eyes on. Oh, one last problem? She kinda tells Matt she’s Sasha, her roommate. No way she’d stand a chance with him if he knew she was his buddy’s kid sister. And Lucy really, really wanted a chance. A little whit lie never hurt anyone, right? NYPD sniper Matt Donovan wasn’t too keen on the idea of driving his buddy’s kid sister and her roommate the four hours back home. Scratch that, Matt wasn’t too keen being stuck with only the roommate for the four-hour drive back home. Fresh-faced and full of life, the minute he saw her his inner demons came to life crawling inside his head and filling him with all sorts of visions he knew he shouldn’t be having. He was used to keeping everyone at arm’s length and it would be smart is he kept her there as well. Far away from him. But even the strongest willpower can crumble….and damn if she is chipping away at his from her very first hello. He didn’t stand a chance and figuring one night wouldn’t kill either of them, he gives in….and not long after finds out she isn’t Sasha. She’s Lucy….his buddy’s kid sister and is beyond off limits. Not only because of who her brother is but because of who Matt is and the darkness he hides. The beauty of a broken soul is that there is always the room to heal. It’s in taking that first step and letting someone help mend the hurt and heal the pain. Matt being resigned to his feelings that he would never be good enough for anyone and Lucy seeing right through to the heart of him and showing him just how much he matters. Matt needing to take and Lucy willing to give….emotional beauty in all it’s essence. As I sit here and write this review I can’t help but get a little teary eyed. Tessa has given us some of the most delicious alpha males ever written and some of the most amazing gals for those men. I’m sad to see this series end. But if the series had to end, this was the book to end it on. Matt has been the quiet guy in the shadows and we haven’t heard much from him. We kind of got a hint that there’s a story with him but didn’t get much else. I think the most he’d ever spoken was in Brent’s book and the minute he spoke I knew I would love him. His story is a gut-wrenching one. He’s broken and tortured and sees himself as unworthy of someone like Lucy. He’s lived thorough war and has been hurt by the ones he’s loved most. He hasn’t had much to be hopeful for…until he met Lucy. Lucy who is bright and fun and full of life. Lucy who makes him want to be a better man even with the knowledge that he will always have his dark desires. Lucy who is willing to be who and what he needs when he needs it most. Lucy who isn’t afraid of him and treats him like a man and not like a monster. The push and pull between them is tangible. She’s the forbidden fruit and knowing he will be damned, Matt takes a bite anyway, and is instantly addicted. He can’t believe that Lucy could be feeling the same way for him. Matt has some lines in this book that ripped my heart out but to see the affect Lucy has on him and to see him smile more each chapter was truly a gift to read. I desperately wanted Matt to get his happy ending because no one deserves it more. (my lips are sealed, of course…no spoilers here!) This is definitely the darkest book in the series and in true Tessa fashion, she freaking nailed it. The passion, the anger, the angst, the emotion, the heat….she nailed all of it. Oh and the ending? I went from crying to laughing to cry-laughing and back to crying…but finished with a huge goofy grin plastered on my face. Tessa, thank you for giving us Matt and Lucy. Thank you for giving us the Line of Duty Series. Thank you for being you! I can’t wait to see what you have in store for us in the future…because I know damned well it will be amazing!
Damn. Tessa Bailey has done it again. I mean, I really don’t think it’s possible for Tessa Bailey to disappoint – I’m pretty sure she could write a narrative of the phone book and I’d be interested. Staking His Claim is filled to the brim with hot encounters and a relationship that has all the trimmings for success. After the insane amount of love I had for the prior book in the series, Asking for Trouble, it was nice to see Hayden and Brent back again in this one. The story stars Brent’s sister, Lucy, and some of the other guys from the series pop up from time to time as well. The chemistry between Lucy and Matt is insane. Matt is one demanding guy, and damn is he hot. Within a few pages, I was already falling for brooding Matt. He is different from the other guys in the series and has his own history, and I just loved him. I was a totally goner and couldn’t do anything but keep reading whenever I had the chance, since his and Lucy’s story was just fanatastic. Holy hell, Tessa Bailey, this may have been your best book yet. Staking His Claim was just brilliant. I already have begun my countdown for Tessa Bailey’s next release!
Wierd story. One person likes to hurt while the other likes being hurt. Glad they found each other and let the normal people alone. Did laugh at the motel with pizza guy scene.
Well written, 4.5 stars.. I usually don't like the books where the girl sleeps with the guy the first day they meet, but this one was written so well I didn't think of Lucy as a slut.
♥♥Hunter my bf♥♥
This is the real rennee theres girl on here thats been pretending to be me