Thursday, May 18, 2023

Review - - A Lethal Betrayal

A Lethal Betrayal
by Lori Matthews
Coast Guard Hawai'i - Book 1
Publisher: Wild Coyote Press
Release Date: May 22, 2023
Reviewed by PJ

Chief Petty Officer Dane Landry is injured and burning through his last chance with the US Coast Guard. His new team is tasked with finding stolen military-grade technology, but he finds himself in the crosshairs of an investigation as the prime suspect in the murder of a former teammate.
 With his career and freedom on the line, his top priority should be clearing his name while navigating the complex web of suspicion and betrayal that surrounds him. Being thrown together with the beautiful investigator is a distraction he doesn’t need.

Coast Guard Investigative Service Special Agent McKenna Rankin is determined to find out who killed the Senior Chief, but it soon becomes obvious there’s so much more at stake. Her attraction to the prime suspect is an obstacle she hadn’t anticipated, but one she isn’t sure she wants to overcome. As her investigation heats up and tensions run high, Dane and Mac must find a way to reconcile personal feelings with professional obligations while racing against the clock to uncover the true culprit before it’s too late.

PJ's Thoughts:

Lori Matthews keeps upping her game with each book she publishes. A Lethal Betrayal, book one in her new (connected) series, sucked me in, taking me on a wild, pulse-pounding ride from start to finish.

I felt like I was holding my breath for at least 90% of this book. Matthews loads it up with action, danger, suspense, and enough twists to give me whiplash. Tightly plotted, the story offers intense, life or death scenarios that kept me on the edge of my seat, gasping for breath, trying my best to figure out exactly who the villains were and how it would all work out in the end. I did center in on one person from the start and added another into the loop midway through the book but, boy howdy, did she keep the others close to the vest, sending me this direction and that until all was finally revealed. I love it when an author keeps me off balance like that, guessing right up until the end. 

As superb as Matthews is at weaving together breath-stealing suspense plots, so too does she excel at crafting complex, multi-layered, fully-developed characters who engage my emotions. As important as the action and suspense are to this book, the romantic, emotional connection between Dane and Mac holds its own as a counterpoint, adding a necessary emotional depth to their life or death heroics. 

Fans of Matthews' Coast Guard RECON series will recognize a few secondary characters in A Lethal Betrayal but readers new to the author should have no trouble at all beginning with this new Hawai'i series (though I also highly recommend the RECON books). 

A Lethal Betrayal is a fast-paced, action-packed, breath-stealing romantic thriller that kept me reading way past my bedtime. This series is already as addictive as her previous ones. I'm fully engaged and excited to discover which team member will take center stage next. 


  1. Thanks for the terrific review. You always give me something to consider in books.

  2. Just the type of read I like. My first love in reading was suspense long before I discovered romance. I do like the combination, but a tightly written suspense that keeps me guessing is still my favorite.

  3. I have to check this author out!! Great review. Romance with a suspense zing is perfect.