Sunday, November 24, 2013

Early Review: Covert Assignment by Missy Marciassa

Release Date: December 1, 2013
Publisher: Missy Marciassa
Source: NetGalley
Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook |Goodreads

Covert Assignment is a New Adult, Coming of Age Novel with a strong romantic element. Elle is ready for graduation and full-fledged adulthood: no more living like the leftover of her parent’s divorce. She’s about to graduate with her degree in Information Science (the 21st century term for Library Science) and has a ten-year plan as well-designed as any model for analyzing metadata: earn her JD/MBA, enjoy a couple of years as a single professional, then marry her college sweetheart, Adam, and start her own family.

Yet Elle feels like she returned to an alternate universe her final semester. There are pictures of Adam with a classmate who must be surgically enhanced, but he insists he wants Elle. CIA recruiters show up on campus, and they aren’t just interested in recruiting Elle for future employment: turns out she’s already working for them since they’re funding her thesis. Hot operative Preston Raddick is tasked to work with her. Preston isn’t just hot: he’s hot for Elle, but is he offering happy ever after or happy for right now? A fling with Preston could be the beginning of a new life plan, which is exciting and scary, especially with espionage thrown in. Elle needs a predictive model to tell her which decisions have the greater likelihood for happiness…
Covert Assignment is about the unexpected turns life can take when making “adult” decisions.

I'm always shocked when I start looking for a book's publisher, only to find that it's a self-published title. Well, not always
But in this case, I had no idea. Seriously, keep an eye out for this author in the future.

Covert Assignment was an easy breezy read for me. Elle was adorable, her friends were awesome, her ex was deliciously icky, and Preston was a hottie. The CIA vs. terrorist stuff wasn't really nail-biting, but it added a bit of fun to an otherwise normal story about the decisions that leave their mark on our journey to become an adult.

Elle's got a Plan. Finish grad school, go to her father's alma mater for her JD/MBA, marry her college sweetheart, and live happily ever after.
Her parents split when she was very young, then both remarried and started families over again. Elle was a reminder of their failure, and was treated accordingly. Her lifeline to acceptance and a family that loves her is her boyfriend, Adam. Even though there's not much chemistry between them, he's her best friend and she loves him.
Besides, sex is overrated. Right?
Evidently not, because when she comes home from a particularity awkward Christmas with her mother, she finds out that he's been screwing a bimbo from one of his classes. And the skank posted pictures on the internet.
Visual imagery is always a nice addition to betrayal...
Adam swears he was seduced by her evil charms because he was drunk, and  it will never happen again. All he wants is a chance to prove himself!
Blah, blah, blah...
Fortunately for Elle she has two awesome girlfriends to help her navigate this rather massive speed bump in her life. 
'Cause if there's ever an appropriate time to get shit-faced with your girls, it's after you see the guy you thought would be the father of your children humping a troll with ginormous titties.

Meanwhile, an opportunity to work with the CIA on a short-term basis comes along. Turns out, the information data she's been collecting on a bunch of gamers for her thesis is somehow related to a group of terrorists. And they could use her expertise to help them continue gathering data on a sub group within the chat rooms.
Again, the spy stuff was ok, but don't go into the book expecting a hard-core thriller. 
 Of course, they're not just going to give a grad student a CIA laptop, and turn her loose to ferret out the bad guys. And it wouldn't be a romance novel if she got partnered up with a paunchy old fart, right? No. No, it would not.
So say hello to our young hot spy dude, Preston, aka the operative who will be dealing with all of the classified stuff.
Once Preston makes it known that he's interested in more than just Elle's computer skills, she's got to decide whether to give Adam a second chance, or to totally deviate from the Plan.
Deviate! Deviate, you idiot!

Anyway. This book is a good choice for someone looking for a light romance to break up the monotony of a Sunday afternoon.
Apparently Elle's story is also going to continue in Marciassa's next book, Covert Interview. Good news for me, because the ending (while complete) left me wanting to find out more about these characters.


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