Series: Cold Justice #7
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Also in this series: Cold Hearted (Cold Justice, #6), A Cold Dark Place
Also by this author: Cold Hearted (Cold Justice, #6), A Cold Dark Place, Cold and Deadly
When an international ring of sex traffickers kidnaps an eight-year-old girl in Boston, FBI Agent Lucas Randall heads undercover. But his rescue operation goes disastrously wrong and Lucas barely escapes with his life. Now the ruthless traffickers are hunting him down, along with everyone else who threatens their operation.
Computer expert Ashley Chen joined the FBI to fight against evil in the world—evil she experienced firsthand. She has mad skills, and deadly secrets, and once she starts working with Lucas, she also has big trouble, because after years of pushing people away, she’s falling for the guy. The feeling is more than mutual, but as Ashley intensifies her online pursuit of the trafficking ring, her traumatic past collides with her present and suddenly Lucas can’t tell which side she’s on. And as the case escalates into a high-stakes game of cat and mouse, it turns out Ashley isn’t the only one with something to hide.
If neither can trust the other with their secrets, how can they trust each other with their hearts?
The content of Cold Secrets is dark. If you have read some of Anderson’s previous books in the series, you know she doesn’t shy away from the ugly things people do. In Cold Secrets, the focus is on human trafficking, including children. Our hero, Lucas, is an agent who has been working to stop sex trafficking and is called in to assist on a case in Boston. Our heroine, Ashley, is a young cyber specialist who wants to prove herself. I liked Ashley because she is passionate about her job. Often in romance novels, you have a hero who is passionate about his job as a military man, bodyguard, cop, etc. However, the heroine seems to enjoy her job, but doesn’t have that same passion about her work. Ashley has that passion and hunger and drive. She not only wants recognition and respect for her work, she wants people to understand that cyber crimes shouldn’t be taken lightly. She not only wants to be good at her job, she wants to change peoples opinions of her field. #GirlPower!
Another kudos to Anderson is her creation of diverse characters. In the previous book, it was an Indian hero. In Cold Secrets, Ashley is Asian American. In both books, the characters address common racial stereotypes they encounter. Just like the tough topics that make up the plot, Anderson doesn’t shy away from calling out cultural bias and addressing it.
Ok, tangents aside, Cold Secrets follows the pattern of previous books in the series. You have this horrible event occurring (trafficking), lots of cops butting heads, additional analysts trying to collect any information they can, and now, the significant others of a few of the characters who make guest appearances. The plot is detailed and engaging; you will want to know who is behind this trafficking ring and how it all happened. You will also want to find out how Lucas and Ashley will find their romance (come on, you know they will; its just a matter of how). Neither has a good first impression of the other except for physically. They both like the others’ appearance! So, reading about how Ashley will prove herself and how she and Lucas will get past their initial feelings for each other is almost as engaging as the danger they face from the case. If you like romantic suspense that touches on real issues in a blunt manner, and realistic characters who are far from perfect, Cold Secrets and the whole Cold Justice series is one you don’t want to miss.
- POV: 3rd
- Tears: no
- Trope: cops
- Triggers: View Spoiler »obviously, there is human trafficking and it does involve children. While no explicit abuse is detailed, the subject matter might bother some people! « Hide Spoiler
- Series/Standalone: stand alone within an interconnected series
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »no « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »yes « Hide Spoiler
The Devil’s Daughter by Katee Robert, Lethal Game by Katie Reus, Taken by Cynthia Eden…then you will probably like Cold Secrets!