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Authors: Tami Hoag

Keeping Company

BOOK: Keeping Company
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Dear Reader,

Readers sometimes wonder where I got my start as a writer. When I tell people that my first novels were romance novels for Bantam’s Loveswept line, they’re usually shocked. Although this genre may appear completely different from the suspense I write today, the two have more in common than it seems.

For me, there are two crucial elements to every good story: characters to fall in love with and root for, and a mystery to be solved, whether it is a crime or that baffling and bewildering emotion that puzzles us most of all—love. Even the most twisted murder plot can’t compare to the complex inner workings of the human heart.

Keeping Company
, sensible corporate lawyer Alaina Montgomery has been frustrating her match-making friends for years. But this time they’ve
tried to set her up with the wrong guy: Dylan Harrison, a free-spirited single dad who runs a ramshackle bar and bait shop. Appropriately enough, she meets him on the way to a science-fiction-themed masquerade party. When cops mistake the costumed pair for a lady of the evening and her client, Alaina and Dylan end up in jail together. And soon they hatch a plan to foil the matchmakers once and for all by pretending to be a couple. What begins as a good-natured ruse quickly blossoms into a real romance, as these two polar opposites discover that desire can’t be so easily disguised.

Dylan and Alaina’s story brings us back to the small town featured in my Rainbow Chasers trilogy from years ago. I hope that you’ll enjoy this story as much today as I did at the very beginning of my writing career.

All my best,

Tami Hoag



“Captivating thriller … [Elena] is a heroine readers will want to see more of.”
—Publishers Weekly

“Hard to put down.”
—The Washington Post

“A superbly taut thriller. Written in a staccato style that will have readers racing through the pages … will leave readers breathless and satisfied.”

“A suspenseful tale, with a surprising ending, the author once again has constructed a hard-hitting story with interesting characters and a thrilling plot.”
—Midwest Book Review

“Elena Estes [is] one of Hoag’s most complicated, difficult and intriguing characters.… Hoag enhances a tight mystery plot with an over-the-shoulder view of the Palm Beach polo scene, giving her readers an up-close-and-personal look at the rich and famous.… 
The Alibi Man
is her best work to date.”

“An engrossing story and a cast of well-drawn characters.”
Star Tribune

“[Hoag] gets better with every book.… One of the tautest thrillers I have read for a long while.”

The Bookseller

“Hoag certainly knows how to build a plot and her skill has deservedly landed her on bestseller lists numerous times.”
—South Florida Sun-Sentinel

“Hoag has a winner in this novel where she brings back Elena Estes.… Hoag is the consummate story-teller and creator of suspense.”
—Mystery News

“Tami Hoag weaves an intricate tale of murder and deception.… A very well-written and thought-out murder/mystery. Hoag is able to keep you guessing and you’ll be left breathless until all the threads are unwoven and the killer is revealed.”
—Fresh Fiction


“A snappy, scary thriller.”
—Entertainment Weekly

“Stunning … Here [Hoag] stands above the competition, creating complex characters who evolve more than those in most thrillers. The breathtaking plot twists are perfectly paced in this compulsive page-turner.”
—Publishers Weekly
(starred review)

“A chilling thriller with a romantic chaser.”
—New York
Daily News

“A first-rate thriller with an ending that will knock your socks off.”

“An engrossing thriller with plenty of plot twists and a surprise ending.”
—OK! Weekly

“A chilling tale of murder and mayhem.”

“The in-depth characterization and the unrelenting suspense are what makes [this] an outstanding read. Gritty and brutal at times,
Prior Bad Acts
delivers a stunning novel of murder, vengeance and retribution.… Riveting and chilling suspense.”
—Romance Reviews Today


“Excellent pacing and an energetic plot heighten the suspense … enjoyable.”
—Chicago Tribune

“Everything rings true, from the zippy cop-shop banter, to the rebellious bike messenger subculture, to the ultimate, heady collision of Hollywood money, politics, and power.”
Star Tribune

“Hoag’s usual crisp, uncluttered storytelling and her ability to make us care about her characters triumphs in
Kill the Messenger

South Florida Sun-Sentinel

“A perfect book. It is well written, and it has everything a reader could hope for.… It cannot be put down.… Please don’t miss this one.”
—Kingston Observer

“[A] brisk read … It demonstrates once again why [Hoag’s] so good at what she does.”
—San Francisco Chronicle

“[An] action-filled ride … a colorful, fast-paced novel that will keep you guessing.”
—The Commercial Appeal

“High octane suspense … Non-stop action moves the story forward at a breath-stealing pace, and the tension remains high from beginning to end.… Suspense at its very best.”
—Romance Reviews Today

“Hoag’s loyal readers and fans of police procedural suspense novels will definitely love it.”

Kill the Messenger
will add to [Hoag’s] list of winners.… This is a fast-moving thriller with a great plot and wonderful characters. The identity of the killer is a real surprise.”
—Daily American

“Engaging … the triumph of substance over style … [a] character-driven, solidly constructed thriller.”
—Publishers Weekly

“Hoag upholds her reputation as one of the hottest writers in the suspense genre with this book, which not only has a highly complex mystery, multi-layered suspense and serpentine plot, but also great characterizations.… An entertaining and expertly crafted novel not to be missed.”
—Curled Up with a Good Book


“A thriller as tightly wound as its heroine … Hoag has created a winning central figure in Elena.… Bottom line: Great ride.”

“This is her best to date.… [A] tautly told thriller.”
—Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Hoag proves once again why she is considered a queen of the crime thriller.”
—Charleston Post and Courier

“A tangled web of deceit and double-dealing makes for a fascinating look into the wealthy world of horses juxtaposed with the realistic introspection of one very troubled ex-cop. A definite winner.”

“Anyone who reads suspense novels regularly is acquainted with Hoag’s work—or certainly should be. She’s one of the most consistently superior suspense and romantic suspense writers on today’s bestseller lists. A word of warning to readers: don’t think you know whodunit ’til the very end.”
—Clute Facts

“Suspense, shocking violence, and a rip-roaring conclusion—this novel has all the pulse-racing touches that put Tami Hoag books on bestseller lists and crime fans’ reading lists.”
—Baton Rouge Advocate Magazine

“Full of intrigue, glitter, and skullduggery … [Hoag] is a master of suspense.”
—Publishers Weekly

“Her best to date, an enjoyable read, and a portent of even better things to come.”
—The Grand Rapids Press

“A complex cerebral puzzle that will keep readers on the edge until all the answers are revealed.”
—Midwest Book Review

“To say that Tami Hoag is the absolute best at what she does is a bit easy since she is really the only person who does what she does.… It is testament to Hoag’s skill that she is able to go beyond being skillful and find the battered hearts in her characters, and capture their beating on the page.… A superb read.”
—The Detroit News and Free Press


Books by Tami Hoag

The Alibi Man • Prior Bad Acts • Kill the Messenger

Dark Horse • Dust to Dust • Ashes to Ashes

A Thin Dark Line • Guilty as Sin • Night Sins

Dark Paradise • Cry Wolf • Still Waters

Lucky’s Lady • The Last White Knight

Straight from the Heart • Tempestuous/The Restless Heart

Taken by Storm • Heart of Dixie • Mismatch

Man of Her Dreams • Rumor Has It

The Trouble with J.J. • McKnight in Shining Armor

Heart of Gold

Keeping Company
is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

2010 Bantam Books Mass Market Edition

Copyright © 1990 by Tami Hoag

All rights reserved.

Published in the United States by Bantam Books, an imprint of The Random House Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc., New York.

and the rooster colophon are registered trademarks of Random House, Inc.

Originally published in mass market in the United States in paperback by Bantam Books, a division of Random House, Inc., in 1990.

eISBN: 978-0-553-90795-7



BOOK: Keeping Company
6.33Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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