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Kiss Me While I Sleep: A Novel [Mass Market Paperback]

Linda Howard
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
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Book Description

April 26 2005 CIA Spies
If you sense someone’s watching you from afar, or if you feel a shadow other than your own at your back, I might as well pack it up and call it a day.

It’s a job that makes a killing. Efficient, professional, and without apology, Lily Mansfield is a hired assassin, working as a contract agent for the CIA. Her targets are the powerful and corrupt, those who can’t be touched by the law.

Now, after nineteen years of service, Lily has been drawn into a dangerous game that hasn’t been sanctioned, seeking vengeance for her own reasons. Each move bolder than the next, she is compromising her superiors, drawing unwanted attention, and endangering her very life. Though stress and shock have made her feel somewhat invincible and a little cocky, Lily knows that she too can be taken out in an instant. And if it’s her time, so be it. She intends to go down fighting.

A CIA agent himself, Lucas Swain recognizes the signs of trauma in the line of fire. His orders: either bring her in or bring her down. Yet he too is drawn into the game with Lily Mansfield, dancing on a tightrope as he tries to avoid a major international incident while still battling a tenacious foe who is dogging their every step. Keeping laser focus on the task at hand while vigilantly watching her back, Mansfield never sees the lethal peril that lies directly in her path . . . and how loyalty has a price.

Chock-full of the intrigue, breathless action, and sensuality that have made Linda Howard the master of romantic suspense, Kiss Me While I Sleep is a daring thriller of passion, sudden twists, and richly imagined characters who live and breathe in readers’ hearts. It is the most gripping and complex novel of Linda Howard’s career.

From the Hardcover edition.

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From Publishers Weekly

CIA contract agent Lily Mansfield has been a ruthless, professional assassin for nearly 20 of her 37 years, but her work takes a personal turn after the young girl she rescued off the street as a baby, and the friends that were raising her, are killed. Lily turns renegade and avenges their deaths with a brilliantly executed murder, but she soon finds herself hunted by an evil family, embroiled in a plot that threatens the safety of the world, and chased by handsome CIA agent Lucas Swain, who has been charged with bringing Lily back by any means necessary. Though Howard's latest offering (after Cry No More) is far flung, the high energy story line translates well to audio thanks to the compelling performances of Hill and Bean. The duo deftly tackle the story's many intonations and foreign accents, and their skillful use of nuance lends some depth to Howard's larger-than-life characters.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Linda Howard is the award-winning author of many New York Times bestsellers, including Cry No More, Dying to Please, Open Season, Mr. Perfect, All the Queen’s Men, Now You See Her, Kill and Tell, and Son of the Morning. She lives in Alabama with her husband and two golden retrievers.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A Keeper from Linda Howard July 19 2004
In "Kiss Me While I Sleep," Linda Howard has returned to the world of John Medina and Niemi Burdock, the world of covert intelligence operations and contract killers. She has also returned to the theme she explored in "Cry No More," the trauma of a parent who has lost a child.
Lily Mansfield is a contract killer for the CIA, 37 years old, with 19 years of experience. She is also a grieving parent whose 13-year-old, adopted daughter has recently been killed, along with her foster parents who were Lily's best friends. Lily has set out to kill the man who ordered the hit on Zia and her foster parents, and to wreck as much havoc as she can on his organization. She is doing this without the CIA's sanction; in fact, they have sent one of their top agents, Lucas Swain, to stop her.
Sound grim? It isn't. Lucas Swain is not only an alpha hunk, he is also one funny guy. I found myself chuckling at Swain's opinions and actions, whether it was his thoughts on "chick food" or his views on Fiats. (He hates 'em.) The man went through more cars than Stephanie Plum.
If "Cry No More" had a fairly straightforward plot, that must have been because Howard was saving all her twists and turns for "Kiss Me While I Sleep." Just when you think you understand all Lily's and Swain's schemes and counter-schemes, Howard gives the plot a twist, and you realize you've been led down the garden path. Again.
All in all, a delightful read with a sexy hero and heroine, a serious examination of a parent's grief, and a plot that will have your head spinning. Highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner July 19 2004
By Judy
Linda Howard's Kiss Me While I Sleep is another riveting tale of intrigue, betrayal and love.
Lily Mansfield has been working as a contract agent for the CIA since she was 18. Lily is extremely good at what she does but after 19 years it's taking a toll on her. When close friends and their daughter are murdered, she goes out on her own to bring them down.
Lucas Swain another agent is called in to bring Lily back one-way or another. Higher ups are afraid that Lily is a loose cannon now. Lucas sets to track Lily but isn't prepared for the woman he meets. As they delve further into the reasons Lily friends were killed, it becomes clear that it is far more serious then Lucas first thought.
As they try to untangle the web of deceit, Lucas and Lily become more entangled with each other. Lily who has trusted few people in her life must put all her trust in Lucas. But will Lucas care for that trust or betray it.
Kiss Me While I Sleep is a book that will keep you clued to the pages till the very end. It has all that you expect from a Linda Howard book, the suspense, the intrigue and the passion.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Howard does it again! July 16 2004
By A Customer
I have read all of Linda Howards books and reread many on my Howard shelf. Her books are always page turners with different characters to stimulate our imaginations in a believable fictional scenerio. "Kiss Me While I Sleep" was no different, it was a page turner with real characters as hero and heroine.
I was truly suprised by the ending which was terrific. Tears were necessary, but usually are at one time or another during a Howard book. I was shocked to tears at the ending.
Laughter, great dialogue, good plot, steamy romance, real people, good vs evil, saving the world, exacting revenge, duty, loyalty to family and country. What more can you want? It was worth the price of hardcover. It is definately on my keeper shelf.
My only wish for this would have been more resolution in the epilogue and more passion in the romance. I compare the passion in Linda Howards "Dying to Please" with these two lastest Howard books, "Cry No More" or "Kiss Me While I Sleep", and they do not equal the steamy passages from "Dying to Please". But then again, it may not be fair to compare.
All in all this was a great read and I would recommend it with 5 stars!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner for Linda Howard July 16 2004
By A Customer
The great thing about Linda Howard is how her characters are always new, always different. (When I read Nora Roberts, for instance, I actually get confused sometimes because she has only two heroines: the sweet, smart, slightly clueless woman and the saucy, slightly brittle exerpienced woman. I still like her books, though! And don't get me started on Jayne Anne Krentz, whose books I also enjoy but please, can she stop writing about Seattle business tycoons and their bookish love interests!)
But I digress. Lily and Swain are two more originals and I enjoyed them both--particularly Swain, whose lightheartedness was particularly engaging. Appreciated, too, because when reading any kind of romance, I get tired of the bitter, angy hero, as in "After the Night" who abuses the woman emotionally until he decides he loves her. (Don't hate me, Howard fans: I actually did like After the Night.)
Swain was laugh-out-loud funny, and Lily has her share of one-liners as well. Given the subject matter, it's amazing that Howard could bring forth chuckles from the reader. I did not find the humor incongruous--If I happened to be in their line of work, I would appreciate a good laugh. The humor, far from being gratuitous, is really a survival tactic.
And thank you, Linda Howard for gracefully walking that thin line between "action-packed" and "too much skulking and spying, where's the romance?" Some readers have questioned the ending, but I think Howard made the right choices there as well. I don't want to give anything away, but there is a scene that actually brought tears to my eyes when Lily realized (or did she?) what her end would be. Definitely worth the price of a hardback!
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting
It was very slow for the first little part of the book, but after that, it was exciting and I felt I couldn't put it down. Read more
Published on Jan. 3 2009 by Roseanne Whynot
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Her Best By Far
After getting used to wonderful books full of emotion and witty dialog, this book fell pretty flat. Having a leading lady as an assassin was pretty novel, but her personality felt... Read more
Published on Aug. 24 2005 by NewGirl05
3.0 out of 5 stars Kiss Me While I Sleep
This book put me in mind of ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN with the CIA angle and the mentions of John Medina. That book wasn't one of my favorite Linda Howard's and neither is this one. Read more
Published on July 19 2004 by Cindy Cassady
3.0 out of 5 stars A spy with a sense of humor!
For that alone I could kiss Lucas Swain, never mind that he is a secondhand version of John Sandford's fabulous cop Lucas Davenport. Read more
Published on July 19 2004 by Naomi Johnson
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
This book had the intrigue, but I expected more intrigue, drama, suspense and emotion considering the plot involving CIA agents. Read more
Published on July 19 2004
2.0 out of 5 stars Kiss Me While I Sleep through this book...
The only reason I finished this book was because I spent so much money on it. It didn't keep my attention at all, because the characters are unlikable and underdeveloped. Read more
Published on July 19 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars I loved the cover!!
I have read 99% of Linda Howard's books. I love conflict between the heroine and hero as long as it is not mean spirited. Read more
Published on July 19 2004 by Carol
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but...
I am a true blue Linda Howard fan. I read ANYTHING she writes. Her best is better than any other romance writer; her not so best is still really good. Read more
Published on July 18 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars I really liked it!
I'm not going to give reasons why I liked this book, as I agree with all the other 5 star reviews. I will say that I really appreciated the humor in this book and everything that... Read more
Published on July 17 2004 by CMG
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