Posted in 4 1/2 paws, excerpt, Giveaway, mystery, Review on March 10, 2016

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secrets don't make friends
Date Published: 11/17/2015


Jeyne Dalton has graduated from college, medical school, and has slogged through half of a surgical internship year with flying colors, which she figures HAS to mean she’s put her past – and her family – behind her for good. If only she hadn’t answered that random ad for a roommate, her life would be pretty damn perfect.

Dinah Robbins knows that, no matter what she does, the horror that is her life will never be behind her…unless her controlling, threatening, abusive boyfriend finally kills her. She’s floating, waiting, and advertised for a roommate as a last ditch, listless effort to save herself a few beatings here and there.

Jeyne and Dinah may have been roommates for months, but they’re not anything like friends. In fact, they hardly know each other at all – until the night Jeyne comes home late to find Dinah in a heap of trouble. The two girls then find themselves sharing a secret that brings them together in a way they never expected. And upends their lives in a way they may never be able to set right.

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Jeyne’s dark-brown eyes latched on to mine. They were full of things I’d never associated with my annoyingly meek roommate before—desperation and terror so palpable my palms broke out in a sweat.

Her voice floated like feathers on a summer breeze, and her words seemed to take forever to make sense. When they rearranged, they hit me like yet another punch to the gut.

“We can’t call the cops, Dinah. We have to get rid of him.”

I knew I should’ve snatched the words back. It was crazy to ask anyone—especially Dinah—to cover up a murder, even an accidental one. But with multiple bad decisions during a largely misspent youth lurking in my past, maneuvering myself into a position at one of the best residency programs in the country hadn’t been easy in the first place. I would never get into another one if I got arrested again, and I could kiss a surgical specialty or the fellowship I had my eye on good-bye, too.

Unintentional or not, someone would pay for Tritt’s death. Boys like him came from the kinds of families who had been kicking families like mine into gutters for generations.

Dinah’s face contorted with disbelief. “We can’t do that, Jeyne. It makes it look like we did something wrong, and we didn’t!”

Her mouth hung open and one arm hugged her middle, probably trying to support the cracked or broken ribs that must hurt like a bitch. From my roommate’s resigned and frankly too-tough reaction, it couldn’t be her first time dealing with these sorts of injuries. It made me angry to realize I’d been right all along about Tritt and less sorry about the condition of his body in the other room.

Except for what it would do to my future.

“Dinah, listen to me. Who do you think people are going to blame? The rich dead guy?”

“I have injuries. They’ll have to believe us,” she said, but her voice wobbled.


Fair warning, this book has some violence at the beginning – a woman being abused by her boyfriend, and while not for the faint of heart sadly happens to often in our society.

I thought the book was intriguing and I wondered how Dinah and Jeynie were going to keep their stories straight to avoid being found out about Tritt’s death.  Not that he would be missed, and as we like to say in the south, “he just needed killin’.”

Both Dinah and Jeynie had interesting lives growing up and it is a shame that it took Tritt’s death to really get to know each other as roommates.  But I’m sure that was because Tritt was controlling Dinah and she didn’t want anything to happen to Jeynie.

There is a great cast of characters and I like how both Dinah and Jeynie learn to trust other men as the story progressed.

Can’t tell you how it ends, that would give it away!  But definitely worth reading

I really enjoyed this book and give it 4 1/2 paws up!



About the Author

lila payneLyla Payne has been publishing New Adult romance novels for a little over a year, starting with Broken at Love and continuing with the rest of the Whitman University series and the Lowcountry Ghost stories. She loves telling stories, discovering the little reasons people fall in love, and uncovering hidden truths in the world around us – past and present. In her spare time she cuddles her two dogs, pretends to enjoy exercising so that she can eat as much Chipotle as she wants, and harbors a deep and abiding hope that Zac Efron likes older women. She loves reading, of course, along with movies, traveling, and Irish whiskey.

Lyla Payne is represented by Kathleen Rushall at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

If you’re a fan of Young Adult fiction–science fiction or otherwise–please check out her work that’s published under the name Trisha Leigh.

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