I am excited to read and review a Harlequin Intrigue romance after ages! Today’s book is Witness Protection Widow by Debra Webb. Reminds me of the days when my Mom and I competed over who would read the book first!
Here we go! Book review, followed by a juicy book excerpt!
Thank you NetGalley, for the advance review copy!
Series: A Winchester, Tennessee Thriller (Book 5)
Publisher: Harlequin Intrigue; Original edition (January 21, 2020)
Witness Protection Widow – Book Blurb
Can the witness protection program keep her identity secret?
After Allison James finally escapes her marriage to a monster, she becomes the star witness in the case against her deceased husband’s powerful crime family. Now it’s up to US Marshal Jaxson Stevens, Ali’s ex-boyfriend, to keep the WITSEC widow safe. But as the danger escalates and sparks fly, will Jax be able to help Ali escape her ruthless in-laws?
Witness Protection Widow – My Review
Witness Protection Widow by Debra Webb is a quick, pleasant and intriguing read. Allison is under the witness protection program as the star witness for a major case that will bring down the crime regime of much sought after criminal posing as a businessman.
After her parents pass away and her boyfriend leaves to further his career, she finishes her college education and moves out of her town and gets a job, where she meets the charming Harrison Jr. who sweeps her off her feet. But good things rarely last and soon enough, she finds that under the charming exterior of her husband is a coldblooded criminal involved in all sorts of nefarious activities.
Life changes when she realizes this and questions her husband, who then begins to torture her in countless ways. But Ali is not weak. She decides to collect enough evidence so that she can go to the FBI by listening in on Harrison’s conversations with his father. Then one day, something shocking happens. His father shoots him point-blank and without remorse, announces that she’s now his plaything.
Ali plans her escape and manages to get to the FBI, after which there’s no choice but to go under their witness protection program. For six months, she must be kept safe from the evil Harrison Senior who will stop at nothing to destroy her.
Ali is moved across safe places and understands that there might be no future for her after the trial, if she does manage to survive it. As the trial date approaches, the Marshal who is safeguarding her has an accident and a new Marshal, Jaxson Stevens, is assigned to her. This is none other than the boyfriend she broke up with ten years ago.
Harboring a lot of misunderstanding over what happened over the years, they just about manage to tolerate each other. Then events occur that lead to them talking and learning the truth about why they did what they did. They realize that they’re still deeply in love with each other and now, Jax is determined to keep Ali safe.
On trial day, as they set out to the venue of the courthouse, something totally unexpected happens, resulting in them having to bolt and hide. Will they reach the courthouse on time? Will Ali be able to testify as the star witness in putting an end to a master criminal? Will she get her happily ever after with Jax?
What I liked about the book was the simple storyline, easy language, great characterization with just the right amount of descriptive prose. I finished the book in one sitting—I am a huge fan of anything that’s crime/law thriller genre. I enjoyed the romance subtly woven into the story. I like how the author built the suspense across the book at various stages.
Read the book. You’ll enjoy it. I am excited to know there’s a series involving some of the characters I met in this book and I intend to dig into them.
Witness Protection Widow – Excerpt
And here’s an excerpt from the Witness Protection Widow by Debra Webb to whet your reading appetite!
She shivered. The fire had gone out. She kept on her jacket while she added logs to the fireplace and kindling to get it started. Within a couple of minutes, the fire was going. She’d had a fireplace as a kid, so relearning her way around this one hadn’t been so bad. She went back to the kitchen and turned on the kettle for tea.
Bob growled low in his throat and stared toward the front door.
She froze. Her phone was in her hip pocket. Her gun was still in her waistband at the small of her back. This was something else Marshal Holloway had insisted upon. He’d taught her how to use a handgun. They’d held many target practices right behind this cabin.
A creak beyond the front door warned that someone was on the porch. She eased across the room and went to the special peephole that had been installed. There was one on each side of the cabin, allowing for views all the way around. A man stood on the porch. He was the typical local cowboy. Jeans and boots. Hat in his hands. Big truck in the drive. Just like Marshal Holloway.
But she did not know this man.
“Alice Stewart, if you’re in there, it’s okay for you to open the door. I’m Sheriff Colt Tanner. Branch sent me.”
Her heart thudding, she held perfectly still. Branch would never send someone to her without letting her know first. If for some reason he couldn’t tell her in advance, they had a protocol for these situations.
She reached back, fingers curled about the butt of her weapon. Bob moved stealthily toward the door.
“I know you’re concerned about opening the door to a stranger, but you need to trust me. Branch has been in an accident, and he’s in the hospital undergoing surgery right now. No matter that his injuries were serious, he refused to go into surgery until he spoke to me and I assured him I would look after you, ma’am.”
Worry joined the mixture of fear and dread churning inside her. She hoped Branch wasn’t hurt too badly. He had a wife and a daughter.
She opened her mouth to ask about his condition, but then she snapped it shut. The man at her door had not said the code word.
DEBRA WEBB is the award winning, USA Today bestselling author of more than 150 novels, including reader favorites the Faces of Evil, the Colby Agency, and the Shades of Death series. With more than four million books sold in numerous languages and countries, Debra’s love of storytelling goes back to her childhood on a farm in Alabama. Visit Debra at www.DebraWebb.com