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Stolen Heat    by Elizabeth Naughton order for
Stolen Heat
by Elizabeth Naughton
Order:  USA  Can
Love Spell, 2009 (2009)

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* * *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Antiquities dealer Peter Kauffman has never been too fussy about how he acquires pieces for his Florida based museum - until he meets na´ve Egyptologist Katherine Meyer. His plans to set her up as a mark fall by the wayside when he finds himself inexorably drawn to her innocence and enthusiasm. Convinced that time and distance will quell his raging desire for her, Peter goes on extended business trips but it's no use - their love affair rages for months. Kat, however, eventually sees through Pete's lies, evasions and absences and walks out on him. Hurt and angry, yet unable to let her go, Pete vows to clean up his act. But when he returns to Cairo to show Kat that he's gone straight, he is shocked to discover that she had died in an explosion.

Six years have passed since Katherine's death and not a day has gone by that Pete hasn't thought about her. That's why he can barely believe his eyes when he spies a woman (the spitting image of his lost love) acting suspiciously at his gallery fundraiser. Kat is equally shocked when she inadvertently crosses paths with Pete and she does her best to elude him. She had after all only come here to steal back a relic that holds the key to identifying the men who killed her best friend, threatened Peter, and forced Kat into hiding. Everything would have been just fine if Pete hadn't decided to put the relic up for auction. His unfortunate choice forces her out of hiding, determined to do whatever is necessary to continue protecting the only man she's ever loved.

Stolen Heat is a terrific follow-up and loose tie-in to Naughton's 2008 debut in Stolen Fury. The author once again presents a solid and adventure filled plot where both Kat and Pete suffer plenty of emotional ups and downs and life threatening situations as they're forced to work together to solve a six-year old archaeological mystery and murder - not to mention sort through their own complicated relationship. The author's use of well placed flashbacks is very nicely done as she shows how the pair first met and how Pete's shady associations marred their relationship. Elizabeth Naughton, who knows how to tell an action packed and emotionally rich story, is a new author to watch.

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