cover image Close Enough to Hurt

Close Enough to Hurt

Katherine A. Olson. Crooked Lane, $29.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-63910-501-4

Olson’s thin if diverting debut centers on plucky 32-year-old Dylan Truman, who runs a revenge-for-hire business called Dark Horse Consulting from her houseboat in Sausalito, Calif. Dylan, who keeps her identity a secret by operating under the name Lady Justice, slaps men who have wronged her female clients with reputation-ruining intelligence leaks. Her part-time collaborator in this enterprise is handsome, wealthy “digital P.I.” Daniel Haas, for whom Dylan harbors undisclosed feelings. The pair’s latest client, Dr. Evelyn Chang, comes to Dylan and Daniel hoping to expose her former employer, Prometheus Pharmaceuticals CEO Brent Wilder, for falsifying a series of drug trial results. Hearing Brent’s name stops Dylan cold: 16 years earlier, Brent brutally raped Dylan’s older sister, leaving her with a massive facial scar. Motivated by more than her traditional financial incentive, Dylan waives her fee, lightens her hair, gets a sexy new wardrobe, and moves into a house next to Brent’s, determined to seduce and expose him—even if the going gets dangerous. As a Promising Young Woman–style thriller, this is light on shocks and heavy on coincidences, but as an escapist romance between Dylan and Daniel, it delivers the requisite heat. This one’s best suited to romance fans. Agent: Eva Scalzo, Speilburg Literary. (Oct.)