One Night Stand: A Beautiful Lie by T.E. Sivec


A Beautiful Lie (Playing with Fire, #1) by Tara Sivec
Contemporary / Suspense
T.E. Sivec (January 2, 2013)

Rating: B+
Heat: Hot

Heroine: Annabelle Parker – Photographer, Best Friend/Lover 
Hero: Garrett McCarthy -  Navy SEAL, Best Friend 
Setting: Dominican Republic



“It’s a beautiful lie. It’s the perfect denial. Such a beautiful lie to believe in.”

I really adore Tara Sivec’s Chocolate series but A Beautiful Lie shows just how eclectic and talented of a writer she truly is. I am honored and excited to be able to review this story for her. A Beautiful Lie starts off with a slow build, as the reader gets to know the characters and their past history. And, just when I was growing slightly bored of the character’s back story, I was thrust into a suspenseful story loaded with plot twists, betrayals, secrets, hot passion, smoldering sexual tension, lies, lies, and more lies.

A Beautiful Lie is Annabelle Parker, Garrett McCarthy, and Milo Roberts story. Garrett and Milo have been friends since high school, where Garrett and his family took Milo in from a very violent home where he was abused by his father. Garrett and Milo may not have been blood but they were brothers in every other way. They went to college together and then became Navy Seals together. Garrett and Milo met Parker at a coffee shop one day. Garrett was immediately drawn to Parker, but Milo is the one who claimed her as his. Garrett, the loyal friend that he is, would’ve done anything for Milo, even let him claim the one girl that stole his heart at first glance. And, for the next eight years, these three were as close as best friends could be. While one had the girl, the other wished he had the girl.

Eventually Milo and Parker became engaged to be married. As Parker was planning the wedding, Milo went on a mission to the Dominican Republic. But he never came back home. He died during this mission. Garrett, unable to get over his best friend’s death, is determined to reveal what really happened on the island. So he volunteered to go on another mission in the Dominican Republic. This mission requires a man and woman to pose as a married couple who are a journalists and photographer. Their mission is to get close to the President of the Dominican Republic to expose a scandal.

Parker is a world famous freelance photographer. When she finds out the photographer that originally was supposed to go on the mission, couldn’t go. Parker, stubborn and determined, decides to take her place. Garrett wants to protect Parker and refuses to let her go. But there is something Garrett doesn’t know about Parker which leaves him with no choice but to take her with him.

"If you were mine, I would never be able to walk away from you. If you were mine, I'd worship every inch of your body with my hands, lips, and tongue. If you were mine, I wouldn't be able to stand in the same room as you without running my hands over your skin and tasting your lips. If you were mine..."-Garrett

From the beginning, we learn about Garrett and Parker’s feelings for one another that have they never told each other for eight years. For years he kept his feelings hidden from Parker, and for years he has tried to fill the emptiness and jealousy over Milo and Parker’s relationship with empty relationships. But, even as he struggles with his guilt and shame, because of his love for his best friend’s girl, the battle that has been raging inside him reaches a breaking point. His carefully built walls began to crumble. And eventually fall.

Oh, but Garrett is not the only one who has been hiding his feelings all these years. Parker gave herself to Milo, but her heart always belonged to Garrett. However, after Milo’s death and working closely to Garrett, things between them begin to heat up. And, because Parker no longer had Milo to hide behind, she could no longer deny her feelings for Garrett.

"I’m not scared because I can't give you my love in return she told him softly. I'm scared because I love you so much sometimes it's hard to breathe"-Parker

I really love Garrett and Parker. They truly are friends first and foremost. The emotional baggage they’ve both been carrying around all these years is painful and sad. As they both battle internally with their feelings, I was extremely frustrated. I wanted them to fess up to their feelings, rip their clothes off, and have hot and fiery sex! And, good lord, the sexual tension between these two was off the charts explosive! The “almost” sex scenes were just as intense and smoldering, if not more, as the actual sex scenes. Ms. Sivec definitely knows how write sexual tension to the point my whole body was lit up with excitement.

Not only was the sexual tension incredible, but the mystery behind Milo’s death was also incredibly intense. There are so many secrets and lies and betrayals all tightly woven into the plot. All of these characters have so many secrets. None of them could’ve ever imagined how different their lives would be after this mission. The plot twists were clever and would sneak up on me. I had quite a few “OMG” moments as I began to realize everything is not what it truly seems. Not to mention all of the “what if” moments. What if Garrett stepped forward and claimed Parker first? What if Parker decided not to date Milo? What if? What if? What if?

To sum it up, this story is about how appearances can be deceiving, lies hurt, secrets hurt, and true love is unconditional. This exciting and engaging story kept me on the edge of my seat almost the entire time. The only thing that kept me from rating this book an A is the slow beginning. But if you struggle like I did at first, keep going, it is well worth it. I can’t wait to see what Ms. Sivec comes up with next in her new Playing with Fire series.

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  1. Great recommendation. I read the first two books in snacks and seduction series. They were funny and snarky and undid enjoy them. But I really enjoyed this book. It was much more grown up. Quite emotional. And it was without an excessive use of the word vagina.

    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Kini! This really is completely different from her Chocolate series. I can't wait for the next book. And not a single "vagina" was mentioned! lol :)


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