Where There’s Smoke
by: L.A. Witt
(Blurb) Anthony Hunter wonders what the hell he’s gotten himself into when he agrees to manage an unproven candidate’s campaign for governor of California. As soon as he meets the gorgeous, charismatic—and married—politician, attraction gives Anthony’s rock-solid professionalism a run for its money, and Anthony knows he’s in way over his head.
Jesse Cameron doesn’t like the idea of putting himself out there as a happily married, wholesome candidate, but his retired senator uncle insists it’ll give him an edge over a challenging rival. The only problem is that Jesse’s marriage is over, existing only to maintain his heterosexual facade. Oh, and there’s that minor detail about his undeniable attraction to his smoking hot campaign manager. Or the fact that the attraction is very, very mutual.
Before long, temptation explodes into a sizzling, secret relationship, but under the microscope of the media and the relentless scrutiny of the voting public, Anthony and Jesse can only keep their secret for so long. And this is one scandal a campaign won’t survive… (End Blurb)
Review: When your well being depends on the feelings and actions of the people you work with or for, you make decisions that you might not make in other circumstances. Anthony Hunter manages political campaigns, campaigns that frequently bring him into the public view, often becoming the media focused image. His straight, solid, no compromising persona has provided him with an amazing career. But it has also left him feeling empty and alone. His career became the dominant factor in his life, forcing him to make the decision to stay deeply embedded in the closet.
Jesse Cameron is a happily married man, or so it seems. In reality he and his movie star wife sleep in separate bedrooms. They are the perfect media faces for happy, loving, passionate married couples when in public. In private they coexist for each others sake. Now, however, they have been thrust into a very public political campaign, one that Jesse knows will result in problems.
One of those problems is Anthony Hunter, who has the hots for Jesse but doesn’t dare act on his feelings, especially not with the candidate whose campaign he is managing. How can he be so involved with Jesse, working with him day and night and not get involved?
I find a story of hidden love to be enticing, especially when it is well written. When two people want each other and have to hide those feelings for some outrageous reasons, the story can become one of horror or passion. Though the story line has been used in so many different ways, Witt’s version by no means leaves me feeling as if I’ve read this before. Witt developed three plots with extreme expertise. Her writing kept me reading. Her hidden agendas kept me interested. I had two different ideas for the ending and was surprised that Witt used neither of them. Well done!
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