Title: Dilemma by Jacquie Johnson
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Romance
Length: 202 pages
In Chicago, the name Jon Elliott garners attention. When the legal mastermind offers to mentor Alexis Winters, Bingham, Elliot, and Bright’s newest associate, she jumps at the opportunity sure she will launch her career. But Jon has a dark side, one that demands unquestioning loyalty and willingness to defy the spirit of the law, if not the letter.
Thrust into Jon’s world and expected to play by his rulebook, Alexis grapples with her conscience. On several occasions, Jon’s orders are at odds with what she learned in law school and she finds herself trapped between her profession’s rules of ethics and her own values. When Jon’s biggest client appears to be engaging in questionable activities and he orders her to ignore the behavior, Alexis investigates on her own. Suddenly, she is not only a witness to a horrible crime but a victim in her own right. Going underground, she turns to the one she can trust, investigative journalist Rhyder Prescott, a childhood friend. Together, Ryder and Alexis work to piece together a puzzle that crosses socioeconomic classes, political parties and international borders.
Embroiled in a global conspiracy that costs her the only family she has left, Alexis must decide how far she will go to defend truth and justice. Is she willing to sacrifice life, liberty and the possibility of love?
Old leaves crunched under her feet as she raced along the path. Small pebbles and twigs broke through the tender skin on the underside of her feet. She winced, hopping on one foot when she encountered a particularly sharp rock but otherwise kept moving.
Unfortunately, it appeared she was in the middle of nowhere. She estimated that about thirty minutes had passed when she slowed near a fork in the trail. The smell of fresh pine surrounded her, and she fought back a hysterical giggle as she stood, naked and weaponless in the middle of a pine forest. She panted heavily, fear and fatigue battling for priority.
The famous Robert Frost poem crossed her mind. I took the one less traveled by . . . Probably wise in this case. She turned left, heading down the more overgrown path. If anyone’s looking for me, hopefully they’ll think I went the other way.
She switched to a brisk walk, grateful that she ran every day and was in such good shape. She must have covered ten miles before she caught sight of a lake. A small carved wooden sign read “Welcome to Paradise—No Trespassing,” and she ran toward the cluster of cottages at the lake’s edge. Thank goodness.
She knocked on several doors but no one answered, and Alexis realized that her prayers had not been answered. This was a summer area. No one was around this time of the year to save her. She rattled doorknob after doorknob, astonished when the front door to the fifth cottage opened under her hand. If only she could find a working phone or even some clothes and shoes.
About an hour later, she had ransacked the cabin and found a pair of ill-fitting tennis shoes, jeans, and a sweatshirt. She munched on a stale package of Oreos someone had forgotten while hunting for weapons. A thorough search turned up a pistol with three bullets. Well, at least she now had some protection. Now if only she could find a phone. She headed to the next cabin.
She gave up searching for a working phone after another hour. As she expected, the summer people had disconnected their landlines. Her prayers for a forgotten cell phone went unanswered, so she moved on.
She walked onward searching various cabins as she came upon them. Finally, she found a small cottage set back from the lake. She wasn’t sure why she had followed that particular path, but when she saw a small stovepipe sticking out from the roof, she smiled. A stovepipe meant people used the cottage off-season. She crossed her fingers as she hurried up the path. She knocked, but no one answered. When her attempts to jiggle the lock open failed, she resorted to breaking a small window with a large rock. She would pay for the damage later.
Once inside, she did a quick inspection of the two-room structure with the gun in one hand before lifting the phone with the other. She almost cried with relief when she heard a dial tone. She set the phone on the small table and started punching in Ryder’s cell phone number. A click came from behind her and she froze.
“What in tarnation’s name are you doing?”
She glanced over her shoulder and came face to face the barrel of a shotgun.
Follow the rest of the tour:
Dilemma Blog Tour Schedule
Ms. Johnson is offering a $5 giftcard to a bookseller of choice (Amazon or Barnes and Noble) to one lucky commenter. To enter the contest, please leave a comment along with your e-mail address on today’s post. Contest ends 10 PM mountain time Friday August 17th.
Ms. Johnson is offering a grand prize of a $20 giftcard a bookseller of choice (Amazon or Barnes and Noble) to one person who follows the tour.