Gold! This precious yellow metal has fascinated mankind since the beginning of time, but for whatever reason the lure of pirate gold is even greater. Some people want it so badly that they are willing to kill for it. This is the premise of Shannon McKenna’s latest romantic suspense novel, Hot Night.
Abby Maitland loves her job as development manager at Silver Fork museum. She’s proud of the way she’s turned her life around over the past few years and left her mistakes behind. Her job gives her a sense of accomplishment as well as financial security. What she doesn’t like is the fact that her well-meaning friend from work keeps setting her up on the dates from Hell.
She gets home from one such date, happy to have it finally coming to an end, only to discover that she’s locked herself out of her apartment. Her date, who’s had way too much to drink, keeps pushing his luck. Abby calls her best friend, Elaine, who has a spare key, but her shy, normally reclusive friend is on a date with a mystery man. Unable to come and help, Elaine does the next best thing—she gets Abby the phone number of a locksmith who specializes in nighttime lockouts.
Zan Duncan runs a successful computer consulting business but also owns Night Owl Lock and Safe. He no longer needs the money from this enterprise, but he still does it because he loves the challenge of locks. He almost ignores the ringing of his cell phone, but the caller won’t seem to hang up. When he finally answers it, he hears Abby’s sexy voice on the other end. When he hears her over-amorous date pushing her too far, he hurries to her home, rescues her from being assaulted and unlocks her door.
The sexual chemistry between Abby and Zan is immediate and all-consuming. Not only does Abby find Zan incredibly sexy, but she is charmed by him as well. But she has sworn off men like Zan—leather-clad, tattooed, with bad-boy written all over him. He is the type of man she used to date and the kind that have almost ruined her life. It’s straight laced, clean-shaven, well-dressed men for her from now on, so she reluctantly sends Zan away.
He knows Abby is skittish, but he wants her more than he’s ever wanted another woman. So when the opportunity arises for him to work closely with her, he takes it. Being hired to do the master key plan for the museum allows him to get to know Abby better. Abby can’t resist Zan’s sexual advances even though her career is on the line with the upcoming opening of Pirate Hoard—a recently-discovered treasure trove from a Spanish galleon sunk off the coast of Barbados by pirates over three hundred years ago. A master of seduction, Zan’s promise of endless nights of passion and pleasure eventually weaken Abby’s resolve and they begin a heated affair.
But someone else wants the gold and will stop at nothing to obtain it. Seduction, deception, and murder are part of his game and when the unexpected arises and he has to change his plans, the villain draws Abby and Zan into his web of destruction.
As always, Shannon McKenna delivers a tight, intricate plot that is smart and compelling. Abby is an intelligent, modern woman with a past she’d like to forget, and Zan is an ultra-alpha male with baggage of his own. The sexual tension between them is enough to melt the ink off the page as they play the kinds of games that only lovers can. However, both of them are determined to protect their hearts, and their emotions run hot and cold. One minute they are falling into bed together, the next they are parting with angry words and accusations. Unfortunately, this back and forth between sex and anger over the course of the entire book doesn’t allow their relationship as much emotional depths as one would like. But overall, it doesn’t matter, as Hot Night delivers a rollercoaster ending that will leave you breathless.