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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

eBook Review: Conning For Keeps


Lovers undercover…Secret Agent Marissa Jones has a gift. A con artist to the core, after deep hypnosis she can turn into someone else entirely. Marisa’s gift has gotten her into hot water over the years, but now more so than ever. With her smoking hot partner by her side, she needs to convince him that not only is she her true self, but also that she can be trusted—even in spite of her past.

…or traitors to the cause? Trevor Harris has his own issues with the mission, he’s got revenge to seek, a cursed painting to secure, and Marissa’s sugary-sweet alter-ego to ignore. But when he releases Marisa from her mental cage and things get a little too hot, he ends up finding out what falling for a con artist really means—bigger trouble than ever before.


First things first, anyone familiar with Joss Whedon's "Dollhouse" will see shades of that running rampant with the way that Marissa goes under deep cover.  At first I had a lot of trouble with that.  It did make for some mighty awkward scenes for poor Trevor though.  The guy couldn't catch a break.  His hot crush is coming onto him in the smallest nightie set in existence and he can't lay a finger on her skin because its not REALLY her.

That's what happens when you have scruples folks.  They get in the way of getting laid.  I'm mostly joking--I did feel really bad for him because the guy was unnerved as heck.  She thought he was her loving fiancee, and much like knocking boots with her would be taking advantage of her, Trevor could not bring himself to hurt this "false" Marissa. 

What I found aggravating about him was that every time he would get close to the real Marissa he'd fling himself so far back that it was a wonder that he didn't wind up in a different state.  His reasoning, that she was a crook and would likely jump at the chance to become one again given half a second to herself, grated on my nerves.  Not quite as much as Marissa constant self-flagellation, but it was pretty far up there.  They treated her former life with her parents less as youthful misguidedness and more like a disease that at any moment would flair to life and take over.  Someone correct me if I'm wrong but can conning/stealing be as thoroughly addicting as a drug?  So much so that you lose ALL sense of self? 

The story got lucky though because I wanted to see when Trevor got his head on straight.  Marissa wises up about how to deal with her crush on him and from there it seemed the best move she could have made.  I liked watching him squirm.  A lot.

While I definitely enjoyed this second TRAIT novel, this is a much spicier read then GAMING FOR KEEPS was and was less on the humorous side.  A bit more scifi too.  Still I'm hoping there's more in store for this spy network because I'd love to know what's up with Josh...