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Devious by Mark Love is a Book Series Starter Event pick #mystery #bookseries #mustread #giveaway

Title: Devious


Author: Mark Love


Genre: Mystery


Book Blurb: 


Jamie Richmond, reporter turned author, is doing research for her next book. Attempting to capture the realism of a police officer’s duties while on patrol, she manages to tag along for a shift with a state trooper. A few traffic stops and a high-speed chase later, Jamie’s ride takes an unexpected turn when she witnesses the trooper being shot.


Although it is not a fatal injury, Jamie becomes obsessed with unraveling the facts behind this violent act. While she is trying to sort out this puzzle, she becomes romantically involved with Malone, another trooper with a few mysteries of his own. Now Jamie’s attention is divided between a blooming romance and solving the crime which is haunting her.


Jamie begins to question the events that took place and exactly who could be behind the shooting. It was a devious mind. But who?




Thursday evening, I returned to an unexpected heat wave. My apartment was stuffy and quiet. I was reminded of a spinster aunt who spent her life cooped inside her little flat, afraid to venture out into the world. I threw open the windows and switched off the furnace. I’d taken nothing but business suits with me and was dying to get comfortable in a pair of jeans. I dumped the contents of my suitcase on the floor of the closet and was shucking my heavy wool outfit when the phone rang.


“Hey, Jamie. How was the trip?” Malone’s deep voice cooed in my ear.


“It was good.”


“How about dinner?”


“I thought you were working.”


“I am. Cops have a right to eat too, you know.”


I was standing in front of the mirror, wearing nothing but stockings and high heels. I wondered if Malone would like the outfit. Maybe I should ask him.


“So do you want to meet me or not?”


“Yes, Malone. Where?”


“O’Leary’s in ten minutes?”


“I’m naked. Give me twenty,” I said. If I told him what I was really wearing, he might break out laughing, or faint dead away.


“Forget O’Leary’s. I’ll be right there,” he teased.


“Twenty minutes.” I kicked off the heels and squirmed out of the stockings. I opted for a pair of very lacy panties with a matching black bra and rummaged in the closet for a corduroy skirt and a cotton blouse. I called this my flirt skirt. It was knee length but had functional snaps that ran down the front of it. Depending on how flirtatious I was feeling determined how many snaps were left undone. I grabbed my bag and hurried off to meet him.


O'Leary's wasn't crowded when I arrived. Malone was in uniform, sitting at a booth near the back of the restaurant. He greeted me with a tender hug and a chaste kiss on the lips then pulled me in beside him on the bench.


"Saving it up for later?" I asked.


"Bank on it.”


Malone opened his menu and scanned the page quickly. A waitress approached, wearing a green leotard and skirt with a black apron. He glanced at me and raised his eyebrows. "Want me to order for you?"


"Sure, I'm starving."


Malone turned to the girl. "We’ll have the roast lamb stew, tossed salads with raspberry vinaigrette, and coffee."


"You eat here often?" I asked as she wiggled away. I'd swear she put a little extra swing in her hips for Malone's benefit. I didn't know whether to be angry or jealous. Idly, I undid a couple more snaps on the skirt. It fell open to mid-thigh.


"Couple times a week. The food's good and the prices are reasonable. The service is pretty good too.” He winked at me. It was obvious he’d noticed the extra wiggle.


"You're a good guy, Malone."


He leaned over to kiss me. His left hand landed softly on my knee. I watched the expression hit his eyes as he realized this was a smooth bare leg he was feeling. Malone gently slid his hand a little higher. A shiver of excitement ran through me. It took several moments for me to withdraw from that kiss.


“Want to skip dinner?” I was blushing beet red.


“I think we’re going to need that nourishment for later.” Malone reluctantly removed his hand from my leg.


After dinner he walked me out to the parking lot. He stopped beside my car and leaned against the door.


"Did I tell you how much I missed you, Malone?" I put my arms around his neck. His hands went to my waist.




"Would it be improper for a girl to kiss a cop while he's on duty?"


Malone's eyes went to his left wrist. "I've got two minutes before I check in."


He tipped his head down to meet my lips and kissed me warmly. If anyone was watching, I didn't see them. I didn't care. His left hand remained on my hip. The right had somehow drifted between my legs and undid two more snaps. The skirt was only fastened to the top of my hips now. A shudder ran through my whole body as his fingertips stroked my bare leg.


“Welcome home, Jamie. Glad to have you back.”


"How glad are you, Malone?”


"See you later?" he asked.


"Oh yeah. It may take me a while to be able to drive. And I seem to be having this problem with my door. It just won't stay locked at night." I pushed his hands away and stepped back before I attacked him in the parking lot.


"I'll have to see what I can do to remedy that. And Jamie…don’t change your clothes.”


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What makes your featured book a must-read?


Jamie is the type of character everyone can relate to. She’s not perfect. She can be stubborn, loyal, intelligent, clever and resourceful, all at the same time. Jamie uses her skills, wits and experience to unravel the puzzling clues and figure out who is behind the crime.  The fact that she’s drawn into a romantic relationship with a guy who is a police officer doesn’t hurt.


Giveaway –


Enter to win a $40 Amazon gift card:



Open Internationally.

Runs January 9 – January 21, 2024.

Winner will be drawn on January 22, 2024.


Author Biography:


Mark Love lived for many years in the metropolitan Detroit area, where crime and corruption are always prevalent. A former freelance reporter, Love honed his writing skills covering features and hard news. He is the author of the Jamie Richmond romance mysteries, Devious, Vanishing Act, Fleeing Beauty, and his latest release, Chasing Favors, along with the novella Stealing Haven. His short story, Don’t Mess with the Gods, was written with Elle Nina Castle and included in the Magic & Mischief anthology.  Love also writes the Jefferson Chene mystery series, WHY 319?  Your Turn to Die and The Wayward Path.

Love resides in west Michigan with his wife, Kim. He enjoys a wide variety of music, books, travel, cooking and exploring the great outdoors.


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1 Comment

N. N. Light
N. N. Light
Jan 11

Thank you, Mark, for sharing your book in our Book Series Starter Bookish Event!

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