Smart Mouth
Erin McCarthy
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Smart Mouth
Erin McCarthy
352 pages
March 2004
rated 4 1/2 of 5 possible stars

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By accident, aspiring journalist Reese Hampton comes across some incriminating evidence about pharmaceutical price-fixing and gleefully recognizes it as her ticket to journalistic heaven. Meanwhile, FBI agent Derek Knight, for whom the evidence had actually been intended, is panicked at this breach of an ongoing investigation and incensed by Reese’s dog-with-a-bone attitude. To keep his already-infuriated boss from altogether kicking him off the case, Knight agrees to give Reese an exclusive into the scandal if she’ll sit on the story for the duration of the investigation.

Trouble is, neither of them completely trusts the other to keep to their end of the bargain. Despite their mutual mistrust, the overwhelming physical attraction between them is intense and immediate and soon overtakes their better judgment. While Knight worries he’s too old for the beautiful and sexy Reese, she in turn worries her tomboy attitude and sexual boldness will spell the death of their fledgling relationship. When it comes down to making a choice between their private lives and professional ethics, what will they choose? Can these two make it despite all the odds?

With a sexual boldness and wit reminiscent of Sex and the City and all the seriousness and intensity of Law and Order, Erin McCarthy strikes gold with her latest book, Smart Mouth. Reese is thoroughly enjoyable as a woman of this new century, one who doesn’t hesitate to go after what she wants – whether it’s a juicy scoop or a luscious man. Derek as an FBI agent with both vulnerabilities and strengths is interesting, and his astonishment and delight at Reese’s aggressiveness, both in and out of bed, feels very real. McCarthy also takes a gander at the serious issue of pharmaceutical price-fixing without being preachy about it. Ardent, amusing, and awesome, Smart Mouth is a book readers will truly enjoy.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Rashmi Srinivas, 2004

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