The Two Gentlemen of Altona (Playing the Fool #1) by Lisa Henry and J.A. Rock (5 Stars)

With plenty of brilliant and enjoyable dialogue, the beginning of this series was a fast-paced, suspenseful romance.

Con man Henry Page just witnessed a murder. He reports the crime, but then quickly leaves the scene as opposed to becoming the next body in the bag. Unfortunately for Henry, Special Agent Ryan “Mac” McGuinness really needs his testimony and makes it his mission to bring Henry in. As these two play cat and mouse games, they slowly start to get to know each other better. Can their relationship survive the fact that they operate on opposite ends of the legal spectrum?

Henry’s non-stop chattering was fascinating. Although he likes to quote Shakespeare, Henry’s own thoughts and behaviors were much more charming and interesting. He has a mysterious background which we don’t get to learn too much about in this story. Mac was a strong cop who doesn’t always do everything by the book. He lacks friends, mostly due to his standoffish nature, but he’s a good cop who wants to protect the innocent.

Henry and Mac develop a smoldering connection while trying to keep Henry alive and finding a mole at the FBI. Although there wasn’t any kind of resolution to this budding romance, I was left with a feeling of hope that they would figure it out in the next book.

I really enjoyed this first story in the series, and having been fortunate enough to read all 3 books back-to-back, I can say that the excitement continued.


Originally reviewed for The Romance Reviews. Complimentary copy provided by author/publisher for an honest review.

Winner of The Romance Reviews Readers’ Choice Awards


Mischief, thou art afoot.

Special Agent Ryan “Mac” McGuinness is having a rough week. Not only is he on a new diet, but he’s also been tasked with keeping Henry Page—the world’s most irritating witness—alive. Which is tough when Mac’s a breath away from killing the Shakespeare-quoting, ethically-challenged, egg-obsessed Henry himself. Unless killing isn’t really what Mac wants to do to him.

Con man Henry Page prefers to keep his distance from the law . . . though he wouldn’t mind getting a little closer to uptight, handsome Agent McGuinness. As the sole witness to a mob hit, Henry’s a valuable asset to the FBI. But he’s got his own agenda, and it doesn’t involve testifying.

When evidence surfaces of a mole in the FBI office, Mac and Henry are forced to go into hiding. Holed up in a fishing cabin, they’re surprised to discover that their feelings run more than skin deep. But as the mob closes in, Henry has to make his escape. And Mac has to decide how far he’s willing to go to keep Henry by his side.

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