Review: Exploited (Zero Day #1) by A. Meredith Walters

Title: Exploited
Author: A. Meredith Walters
Series: Zero Day #1
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Links:

Blurb:
In this pulse-pounding novel from the bestselling author of Butterfly Dreams, a vigilante hacker plays a seductive game with the agent whoโ€™s chasing her onlineโ€”and sharing her bed in real life.

At first glance, Iโ€™m nothing out of the ordinary. I am a daughter. A sister. A friend. When you look at me you wonโ€™t see anything that warrants suspicion. I donโ€™t look like a criminal.

My name is Hannah Whalen, but most people know me as freed0mov3rdr1v3, or โ€œFreedom Overdriveโ€โ€”one of the worldโ€™s most prolific and notorious hacktivists. My goalโ€”my purposeโ€”is to shed light on the evil that lurks behind the corporate and government lies we have been force-fed for too long.

My story begins with the best possible intention. Devoting my life to exposing the corrupt. The dishonest. The unethical. For that, they label me a cyber-terrorist. Wanted by the FBI, Iโ€™ve always been one step ahead.

Until I fell in love.

Because Iโ€™m sleeping with the man whoโ€™s hunting me. And he has no idea that I am his prey. Now I have to decide whatโ€™s more important: my freedom or my heart.

Note: Exploited ends on a cliffhanger. Hannahโ€™s story continues in Aftermath.

My Review:
I got very excited when I first came across this novel and even more excited when I was approved for an ARC and I had been itching to read it. I finally managed to squeeze it into my reading schedule last weekend and it was so worth the wait.

Occasionally, I come across books that I feel were written specifically for me and Exploited is one of those books. Man, where do I start? I loved the perfect blend of mystery, intrigue, and romance. I loved the tech/hacker backdrop that had just enough detail to add substance without bogging the plot down in unnecessary or boring passages. I ADORED Mason, the hot, rugged, FBI agent who was ignoring his gut instincts and falling for a girl who was deceiving him. I thought I would struggle to connect to Hannah but I didn’t. Don’t get me wrong – I hated that she was betraying him in the worst way but her heart was in the right place and her initial motivations were pure.

I was suspicious of Toxicwrath from the get go and couldn’t understand how Hannah aka Freedom Overdrive was so trusting. I knew it was all going to end badly. I love books that keep me guessing over the villain’s identity like Exploited did. The end seems to be implicating a certain person from her past but I think that’s too obvious. My money’s on Kyle or Madison or maybe they’re working together. Either way, I can’t wait to read Aftermath to find out.

The romance was great between our couple and it was a nice build up with a fair amount of toing and froing which I love. Hannah was really battling her feelings but in the end, she caved. I was so rooting for Mason and Hannah but I don’t know how the author is going to pull back from that cliffy ending (LOVED it! Pure torture of the best kind!) All I know is I can’t wait to find out!

I’ve read books by this author before and her writing is as sublime as I remembered it.

If you enjoy well written romantic suspense with swoon-worthy romance and complex characters and a mysterious, intriguing plot then you MUST check this one out. Highly recommended, and one of my top reads for 2017 so far.

Thanks to the publisher for supplying an ARC which I have voluntarily reviewed.

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