When Breanne Mooreland gets left at the altar, she decides the best thing to do is to go on her honeymoon alone. Of course, she loses her luggage along the way and ends up snowed in at a Sierra mountains lodge run by a noticeably quirky staff. And before she can order room service, she finds a naked—and gorgeous—man taking a shower in her suite who refuses to leave . . .
Vice cop Cooper Scott is in serious need of a vacation. He’s not about to give up the only available room to a stranger because of a mix-up. They’ll just have to make the best of it by sharing the bed. They’re mature adults after all. But when Cooper wakes up kissing the long, leggy Breanne, he wants to show her exactly what the honeymoon suite is intended for. That will have to wait, though, because a screaming Breanne has just stumbled over one very dead body . . .
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Get a Clue
By Jill Shalvis
KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP.Copyright © 2005 Jill Shalvis
All rights reserved.
Never agree to marry a man because he has potential. Men are not like houses; they do not make good fixer- uppers. —Breanne Mooreland's journal entry
It took her a while, but eventually Breanne Mooreland real- ized she had a naked man in her shower. Normally that would be the icing on a double-fudge chocolate cake, but in today's case, where she'd already had more failures than she could face, it felt like the last straw.
Consider her the camel, back broken.
In the interest of sanity—hers—she pretended to be fine as she dropped her small carry-on bag to the chair by the bed and stepped to the closed bathroom door. "Um ... hello?"
Nothing but the sound of water hitting tiles. She glanced around the bedroom, exquisitely decorated in rustic wooden-log furniture and soft, fluffy, equally exquisite bedding with pillows piled higher than Mt. Everest. Just what she and Dean had ordered for their honeymoon.
That she was on said honeymoon alone caused her throat to tighten, but she'd cried bucketfuls on the plane and had promised herself no more pity parties.
But, of course, that had been when she'd merely been stood up at the altar in front of two hundred of her closest friends and family members. Before she'd gotten on the plane from hell all by her lonesome, where the turbulence had been so bad she'd had to stay seated between a three-hundred-pound Louisiana woman crying, "Oh, Lordy, Lordy, have mercy—save us, Jesus!" and an Alaskan fisherman who smelled as if he'd kept some of his daily catch in his pockets.
Thinking she'd hit rock bottom—oh, how wrong she'd been—she'd gotten off the plane to discover that the rest of her luggage had never made it from San Francisco. That landing in the rugged, unpredictable Sierras in the middle of a snowstorm was equal to being shaken and stirred. The storm had only increased in severity since, so that the Jeep that had driven her to her "secluded, exclusive, fully staffed manse on the lake" honeymoon house could barely even get down the narrow, windy roads.
Breanne had distracted herself on the terrifying drive by pulling out her Palm Pilot and opening her journal. There she had her life—her hopes, her dreams, her failures, everything. Her last entry, made on the plane: No more failures.
Ha! That was going to be tricky, as she tended to make bad decisions. Maybe she wasn't enough of a giver. Maybe she just took, took, took. Maybe concentrating on others more would somehow turn the tide for her. Yeah, that's what she'd do, she'd give back. Do favors. Perform public service. Try harder at work, where, granted, she slaved over the books for a large accounting firm, but with an attitude.
She knew being the baby of a large family allowed her to fly beneath the radar. Even with her older brothers looking over her shoulder, she'd sought out trouble like a moth to the proverbial flame, beginning back in elementary school, where her sharp tongue and naughty pranks had regularly gotten her into hot water. By middle school she'd switched from pranks to boys, having developed an early fascination.
Of course, her mother always put it more simply: Breanne was drawn to the wrong type—jobs, friends, it didn't matter. Even men. Especially men. Hence, being stood up at the altar—for the third time.
On second thought, chances were she needed more direction than "no failures," so she added: And especially, no more men.
That's when her driver had begun four-wheeling up a narrow private road lined by tall pines covered in so much snow they looked like two-hundred-foot ghosts, swaying in the wind. On either side of them was a dramatic drop as they rose in altitude with every mile. Hues of peach, pink, blue, and purple colored the sheer granite escarpment of the Sierras through the falling snow in the deepening dusk.
Finally they'd maneuvered down a long, steep driveway, stopping in front of a beautiful log-cabin mansion. The backdrop should have been a private alpine lake, but the ascending dark and thick precipitation kept it from view.
"Here you go." The driver had reached over and opened her door instead of getting out and coming around for her.
She supposed she couldn't blame him; night was nearly upon them, and there was at least three feet of white, fluffy snow all around. She ruined her new suede boots just by hoofing it to the front door, clutching her only possession, her carry-on bag. She felt a little awed at how fast it was getting dark, and at the utter lack of city lights—or any lights, for that matter.
As she'd raised her hand to knock, a blast of wind pummeled her, plastering the snow from face to toe, going in her mouth, stinging her eyes, snaking like chilled fingers down her cashmere, open-necked sweater. Gasping for breath at the shocking cold, she staggered around to face her driver, intending to ask him for help.
He was gone.
As she contemplated the aloneness of that, a small streak rushed out from the corner of the house and practically across her feet, ripping a startled scream from her.
Then the streak howled. A coyote.
The sound had the hair on the back of her neck rising as she stumbled back against the door. Don't panic, coyotes don't eat humans. Probably. Hugging herself, she felt very alone.
Alone, alone, alone ... the word echoed in her head in the voice of her mother, who was certain her troubled youngest child would never marry, would never bring forth grandchildren into the world to spoil, and therefore would never amount to anything.
Shrugging that off—no more pity parties!—Breanne eyed the house. It certainly looked impressive with mounds and mounds of white snow pressed against the base, more white stuff falling, and the sky ominously dark and foreboding. Inside, there was supposedly a huge stone fireplace, a Jacuzzi tub, a sauna, a mini movie theater with an entire library of DVDs to pick from, and much, much more, including her own discreet staff for the week.
A honeymooner's delight, right? Dean had claimed to be excited. A shame he'd not been as excited about showing up for the wedding.
No one answered her second, desperately desperate knock, which for an instant perpetuated the hope that maybe she'd been cast in some sort of new reality show called Torture the Bride. Any second now, the director would yell Cut! and then, in a This Is Your Life moment, Dean would pop out and laugh at her for falling for it.
Only there was no camera, no Dean, laughing or otherwise, nothing but snow in her face, making her eyes water, her lips cold, raising goose bumps over every inch of her flesh.
Oh, and let's not forget the coyote, still howling in the distance with his friends, discussing eating her for dinner.
Forget polite. She opened the unlocked front door and gaped in awe at the interior of a most impressive house. She stepped inside the foyer that stretched up to the second story—and came face-to-face with a moose.
Just a head, she told herself, mounted on the wall. Slowly, purposely, she let out the air that she'd nearly used to scream. "Definitely not in Kansas anymore," she whispered. There was also a wood mirror with shelves, each holding glass lamps that sent soft light across shiny, hardwood floors. In complete opposition to the "warm" feel of the room, the air itself danced over her, icy cold.
"Hello?" she called out, trying to stomp the snow off her clothes. Not much of it budged, happier to stick to her every inch, making her wet and miserable.
There was a reception area with a small pine desk, and a sticky note there that read:
Newlyweds get the honeymoon suite, complete with accessory package. Room is open and cleaned.
Well, damn it, she might not be a newlywed, but she was still getting that honeymoon suite, charged as it was to the rat bastard Dean's credit card. She just hoped the suite was warmer than the foyer, because she could make ice cubes in here.
Clutching her small carry-on, which held only her makeup and two extremely naughty negligees that had been meant for her wedding night, she walked to the base of the huge, wooden staircase that slowly curved and vanished up into the second floor, with several big potted plants lining the way. More glass sconces along the wall lit the area so that she could see into the fading daylight. It was an Old West, cabin-style interior, beautifully and tastefully done.
But no one appeared, and she hadn't heard a sound. Along with the daylight, much of her bravado deserted her. She didn't relish the idea of being here alone tonight. "Hello?"
She didn't know what the check-in procedure was, but she wondered if the huge storm had sent the staff members running for their homes in town, a one-horse place called Sunshine, of all things, a good ten miles back down the curvy, surely now snowed-in road.
They'd probably left the door unlocked for their guests, never even considering she'd be alone.
But alone she was. Thanks, Dean.
Knowing from the brochure that the honeymoon suite was on the second floor, she reached for the banister and began to climb the stairs.
"Anyone here?" she called out again at the top, stopping to pant for air. Damn altitude. The landing looked down to an open, large room below, rustic and cozy, with two forest green and maroon sofas shaped in an L, a large leather recliner, and throw rugs dotting the floor. It looked far more inviting than the cold, silent hallway where she stood, shivering like crazy from her wet clothes, and maybe nerves.
Then she realized she did hear something—running water. Proof of life! Hugging herself, she followed the noise, past three doors on the right and left, all of which appeared to be bedrooms.
The hallway walls had old photographs of the Wild West on them: cowboys, wagons, old mining towns. At the end of the hallway, she stopped in front of a set of double wooden doors.
The honeymoon suite?
Hoping so, she stepped inside. That's where she found the log bed, so high she'd need a stool to climb up on it. The bedding was white down, with bear-and-moose pillows, and looked so scrumptuously warm she nearly sank into it. There was a matching armoire and dresser as well, also done in pine logs. The ceiling was open-beamed, and a work of art all by itself. The stone fireplace—not lit, darn it—and floor-to-ceiling windows finished off the room, the windows revealing that the day had fled completely now.
There was a goodie basket on a chair for the honeymooners: body paints in every flavor, a package of edible underwear, and several books on the pleasures of massage and touch therapy, including How to Make a Woman Come Every Single Time.
Too bad Dean wasn't here. He could use that one.
There were other fillers, too: body lotion, bath oils, a brand new vibrator in neon-pink and shaped just like a penis she'd once seen that had a terrible curve to the right. She picked it up and took a good look at it, trying to picture the designers of such an item sitting around a table and deciding on the angle of the curve. She considered herself adventurous and fun in bed, but she couldn't imagine Dean figuring out a way to make good use of this. Gee, guess it was a good thing he wasn't here ...
It penetrated her addled brain that the shower was still running.
Odd. Surely the housekeeper wouldn't be in there ... Curious, a little unnerved—and if she let herself think about all that had happened to her since she got out of bed that morning, she could add crazed to the list—she stepped over a pile of wet clothes on the floor.
Turning back, she crouched down to look at them, trying to get a clue as to who was in her shower. Levi's, original fit, size 34x36. Hmm. Tall and lean. There was also a white Hanes Beefy T-shirt, size large, and a soft blue chambray overshirt, both smelling good enough that if she hadn't given up men, she might have pressed her face against the material and inhaled.
But she had given up men. She'd written it in her journal and therefore it had become law.
He didn't wear underwear.
Why the hell that intrigued her, she had no idea. Rising, shivering because her clothes had become iced to her skin, she knocked on the bathroom door.
Whoever he was, he had the radio on; she could hear the broadcaster talking about the storm of the century—
Storm of the century. That couldn't be good. Pressing her ear to the door, she heard other disturbing words, such as "No one is going anywhere, folks" and "I hope you're all stocked up on whatever you need, because this one's a doozy." At that, she twisted the handle on the door and pushed it open.
The bathroom was as amazingly detailed as the rest of the house. Even through all the thick steam, she could see the stunning granite countertops, the raw wood-framed mirrors, the small overstuffed day couch, the old-fashioned brass fixtures—
And yet another gift basket, filled with more goodies. She looked at the vibrator she still had in her hand. What else could she possibly need? Well, besides a new groom, that is. A shame they didn't come a dime a dozen in a gift basket such as this, selection ready.
The shower took up one full corner, all in clear glass, etched with the outline of the Sierras, which in fact did nothing at all to hide the tall, leanly muscled man standing in it.
Gloriously so, she might add. The water sprayed out of four different rain heads, massaging over him. He had his back to her, and what a fine back it was: broad, ropey shoulders, sleek, strong spine, smooth and tanned until, low on his narrow hips, his tan line abruptly ended.
He had a fabulous, mouthwatering butt, and Breanne took a moment to wonder at the man who wore a bathing suit in the sun but not underwear beneath his jeans.
Water sluiced off him, and soap, too, and then, as if God had decided to bestow one tiny little favor on her shitty, rotten day, the guy dropped the soap.
Breanne held her breath. Would he—
Yes. Yes, he would.
Bending for it, blissfully unaware that there were a pair of very curious female eyes on him, he clearly didn't even consider his modesty. Every muscle in his body flexed as he doubled over, legs slightly spread, offering her an eye-popping view of his—
Lifting her hand, she furiously fanned air to her face, because the front of him lived up to the back, and how. She wondered how old he was, thinking that body couldn't be more than thirty, which was only two years older than herself. In any case, she stood there, rooted to the ground, her own wet misery forgotten, mouth hanging open, drool pooling, eyes locked on the backs of his well-defined thighs.
And what was between them.
But then suddenly he whipped around, staring at her through the glass for one beat before shoving open the shower door, allowing steam and water to pour into the room as he glared at her with an ominous, thunderstruck expression on his face.
More than thirty, she thought inanely. Probably, given those laugh lines bracketing his unsmiling mouth, and startling sky-blue eyes, at least thirty-five.
Not that age mattered, with a majorly heart-stopping body like his.
"What the hell are you doing?" he demanded, looking tough and clearly ready to prove it.
And that's when her brain kicked back into gear and reminded her of her situation. She was in a strange house. In a strange bathroom, out in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by rugged mountain peaks and more snow than she'd ever seen.
And she was staring at a furious, naked guy. "Um—"
"Who the hell are you?"
"I—" She glanced at the neon-pink vibrator in her hand and felt every single brain cell desert her.
Yeah. On that, they were perfectly in sync, thank you very much. She might have a secret weak spot for an edgy, difficult bad boy, but she absolutely did not have a weak spot for being stupid.
Whirling, she dropped the vibrator and ran. She ran like hell through the open bathroom door, slamming it behind her to give her an extra second on him.
He'd told her to get out, so chances were that he wasn't planning on chasing her, but she'd rather be safe than sorry. She hightailed it through the bedroom, leaping over his clothes, moving more quickly in her ruined boots than she'd moved in ... well, a very long time.
Behind her the bathroom door whipped open.
Excerpted from Get a Clue by Jill Shalvis. Copyright © 2005 Jill Shalvis. Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
this was an entertaining quick read. presented as a romantic 'whodunit', it excelled in the romance and failed as a whodunit. if you aren't looking for a romantic mystery, but more of a light read with dynamic and numerous sex scenes, this is definitly the book for you.
Must read this book. It was so entertaining. I read it all in one sitting. The two leads have amazing chemistry and the hero was unbelievably yummy. There are so many laugh out loud moments, which i adore with romance and mystery! All i can say is "more please".
Fast easy and entertaining.
This was a great read. I really love Jill Shalvis, she knows how to keep her readers in suspense. Cooper is a cop who has recently quit his job to find himself. Breeanne was left at the alter and her life has been turned upside down. They both end up in the same lodge in Lake Tahoe to put their lives back together. They are both attracted to each other and the chemistry is great. While at the lodge a murder occurs and Cooper falls back into his "cop" mode to discover the murderer. In the mean time Bree is afraid of everything including her growing feels for Cooper. The book takes twist and turns and the "who did it" will not be obvious in the end. I really enjoyed the book.
Things were not going according to plan when Breanne Mooreland arrives at her honeymoon destination soaked to the skin, chilled to the bone, minus her luggage, and very much alone, since she had just been left at the alter. At least she thought she was alone, until she walks in on a naked man in her honeymoon suite. Cooper Scott, who needed some time away from his job as a cop, also thought he was alone. Imagine his surprise at being ogled by a woman wielding a dayglo pink vibrator. This was the first surprise of many for the two of them. Continuing surprises include a blinding snowstorm that simply would not let up, a most unusual staff that is determined to accommodate them despite a power failure from the storm, and Cooper and Breanne fighting a losing battle against the undeniable attraction that is pulling them together. After a dead body is discovered in the wine cellar and Cooper's law enforcement training takes over, he is determined to keep Breanne safe, not knowing who can be trusted. Cooper and Breanne are absolutely adorable and the cast of secondary characters in this book is pure fun. Jill Shalvis never fails to deliver romance with a laugh, a tug at the heartstrings, and a wonderful dose of steamy romance. Add to that a touch of mystery that adds just the right touch. Get A Clue is food for the romantic soul.
Jill Shalvis is one of my go to authors and I have not been disappointed. This is a different read from what I usually expect in her books. Get a Clue is a darker comedy, murder mystery and complicated love story. Breanne has been left at the altar and decides to go on her honeymoon alone so she can avoid all the sympathy looks and snickers. She is determined that she is done with men. Cooper Scott has quit his job as a police detective and needs a vacation to decide what to do next. Breanne and Cooper are unexpectedly staying in the same rental and neither can leave because of a massive snow storm. The sparks between them have nothing to do with desire at first but things change. Add to the mix a strange house staff and a dead body. Great story.
Enjoyed this . Couldn't stop reading . Breanne and Cooper were heating up more than the sheets .
Not a typical Jill Shalvis novel, but still entertaining. Different premise from most of her other novels.
Always a good read from Jill Shalvis but this one had a bit of a tired plot... A jilted bride and a burned out cop get snowed in in a resort as the only two guests with no way out... Staff are kooky and then they find a body in the basement... Ex-cop switches into detective mode and jilted bride attaches to him when the lights go out and she sees a spider... Light reading and you are left wondering if she will be a jilted bride for the 4th time...
I loved this read! It was quick, easy and entertaining. I was cheering on each of the characters by the end. Is it a hardcore mystery? no. But it is a delightful whodunit? that will leave you guessing and laughing until the very end.
I'm a great fan of jill shalvis, and have thoroughly enjoyed reading nearly all of her books. I love how she makes me laugh out loud. This story however was so completely unbelievable and desperate in its rush to pair the characters together without a strong heartfelt connection that it was a chore to force myself to finish the story. It just didn't click for me. Ask me to recommend my favorites and I could give you a list of at least 15 titles by Jill Shalvis that had me laughing and loving the characters from start to finish. If you're not familiar with this author, please start with other titles and you won't be disappointed.
Seriously, if you are in the mood for a steamy and extremely funny who-done-it romance, pick up this book. No groom. No electricity. Stuck in a house with a naked guy. Screwed. GET A CLUE by Jill Shalvis was freakin' hilarious! I'd read it again in a heartbeat and it's positively in the running for my top ten reads for 2016. It had a snowy setting, a cast that reminded me of the Addams family, creepy shenanigans, a heroine jilted three times at the altar, a burned out cop desiring a serene vacation, suspense galore and a steamy romance. It's not available in audio - I wish it were - maybe that's a good thing as I'd probably laugh myself silly with it. This was the story of Cooper Scott and Breanne Mooreland. As the story opens, Breanne has been stood up at the altar for the third time. She'd had an enchanting snowy honeymoon planned - and fully paid for - at a private lodge in the Sierra Mountains. She decides not to waste the opportunity and take the honeymoon by her lonesome. At the very least, it will get her away from her concerned family and friends at this trying time. Unfortunately, bad luck seems to be following her as the airline loses her luggage and she finds that her honeymoon suite has been double-booked. AND that's only the tip of the iceberg... OMG, I loved both the hero and the heroine. Cooper was a cop. He's totally burned out and had quit his job just before booking this trip which was meant to be a period of rest, relaxation and hopefully include a few interludes with some willing snow bunnies. He was sexy, strong, and someone I'd want around in a scary situation. Breanne had a history of pursuing the wrong type of man. Therefore, she's resolved to write off men entirely in the future. Then she met Cooper... I had too many favorite scenes to mention them all - I'd almost have to post the whole book - but the couple's first meeting when our hero was in the shower was side-splitting priceless. There was a glow-in-the-dark vibrator that played prominently in that scene and some others. I'd would liken it to a comical supporting character as, whenever it appeared, I couldn't resist laughing out loud. Seriously, if you are in the mood for a steamy and extremely funny who-done-it romance, pick up this book. Actually, you should rush to whatever brick-and-mortar or online bookstore you use and buy it now. You won't be sorry. Jill has quickly become one of my favorite authors. I've been inhaling her books as fast as I can. Everyone has been a winner; This one was classic. My full review is posted at Reading Between The Wines Book Club. Please check it out there. 5 Wine Glasses!
A very good read. Light and funny. I enjoyed it very much.
A very cute who done it.
227pgs... Although I had suspicions of what happened, parts still surprised me. I enjoyed the story abd the bits of humor.
Enjoyed reading Get a Clue. Like the fact that it keep you interested in the book.
Hot, hot, hot! The book was 219pgs. of one hottie name Jonas and his girl of his dream, Deanna. There was some suspense and romance. Though, Deanna drove me crazy. Would like to see a story about Deanna's twin brother, Dean.