Aussie Book Review: Runaway Lies by Shannon Curtis

“Their relationship is built on a bed of lies – but can he trust his heart in order to save her life?

Darcy Montgomery is on the run. She must hide until she can testify in a shocking court case involving her former employer, but so far the witness protection program has only brought more danger. Any hopes of keeping a low profile are dashed when she saves the two children of wealthy property developer, Dominic St. James, from a sinking car driven by his ex-wife.

Dominic St. James learns the car crash was no accident and his ex-wife is still missing, presumed dead. He is determined to keep his children, as well as their mysterious rescuer, safe until the threat is neutralised. Fighting his enemies and a growing attraction, he discovers that Darcy is much more than she seems.

The danger to Darcy, Dominic and his family grows as their security is eroded and they face not one but two adversaries who have deadly intent. Who ultimately can trust who?”

Darcy Montgomery is a woman on the run - from her ex-boss who’s really got it in for her. When she finds herself in a near-miss accident with the other vehicle landing up in a river and she fights with pure determination to save the two young passengers, she has no idea of the danger ahead when her identity and whereabouts are exposed in the media.

Suffering with injuries from her heroic rescue effort and, after a well-placed bomb gets her questioning her logic, she acquiesces (somewhat reluctantly) to Dominic St. James (the children’s father) “taking her under his wing” and into his home, where she is offered the chance to recuperate.

She soon starts to feel safer and more secure than she has for a while but, for how long, she has no idea. As she grows closer to Dominic and his little extended family, the fact that she hasn’t been totally honest with him begins to weigh on her conscience when the enemy gets too close for comfort and the safety of his children is compromised. It’s hard to know who to trust when both the hero and heroine have enemies, but even harder to let go of a passion built on a bed of lies.

It’s no secret that I’m a lover of romantic suspense and it usually doesn’t take me too long to connect with the protagonist, but in this case, Darcy was a bit of an enigma to me because Shannon Curtis doesn’t let on too early exactly what it is she is running from and why, so this made it a bit difficult for me to experience that connection with her. While it took me a couple of chapters to get into the novel, her writing managed to hold my attention enough for me to gather pace with Darcy’s journey, whereafter I was plummeted headlong into a race against time with her. Once I was over that first hurdle, I became very sympathetic to the position Darcy had found herself in and immediately began slipping into the world  of this strong, resourceful woman who had been let down by a system that was meant to protect her.

I warmed to Dominic almost immediately because of the absolute gratitude he felt towards Darcy for saving his children. Whilst he is a very rich man, he came across as sincere and honourable and thankfully, not at all like the playboy that Darcy had read about in the tabloids. He is a warm and understanding character who’s never quite gotten over the fact that he lost his whole family when he was younger and this made me empathise with him as well as admire his efforts as a father to his twins, who grabbed me by the heartstrings with the vulnerabilities they displayed throughout the story.

The romance is believable and balanced very well by the suspense element, with a slow build of sensual passion that finally bursts into flame but at no time did I lose sight of the fact that all of these characters were in grave danger.

If you fancy edge of your seat suspenseful reading flavoured with some great spice and a truly shocking twist (one that I didn’t see coming) with characters that have substance, I don’t hesitate to recommend this novel to you.

I wish to thank Harlequin Australia for providing me with a hard copy ARC.

About the Author

Born and raised in Sydney, Australia, Shannon Curtis has worked as a copywriter, business consultant, admin manager, customer service rep, logistics co-ordinator, dangerous goods handler, event planner, switch bitch and betting agent, and decided to try writing a story like those she loved to read when she found herself at home after the birth of her first child.

Her books have been nominated finalists for Favourite Romantic Suspense for 2011 and 2012, as well as Favourite Continuing Romance Series by the Australian Romance Readers Association.

Now she spends entirely too much time daydreaming about hunky heroes and malicious murders — for her books, of course! She loves reading, loves writing, and loves hearing from her readers, so visit her at and say hi!

Shannon is married to a wonderful man and they have three fantastic children who think she's awesome and continue to show her how patient her own parents were, and still are, with her.


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