A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Friday, February 14, 2014



Falcon Securities Agent Tony Archuletta has lost his memory and a CIA operative is being held captive by a lethal group of terrorists out to destroy America. For Tony to pull off a mission this delicate and complex, he must have his memory, as well as every weapon at his disposal.

Abby Williams is an investigative reporter sent on a dangerous assignment. One of Falcon’s agents is being held in the notorious Lubyanka Prison where experimental drugs were used to make him break under integration. The agent is a man Abby has a painful history with. A man can never forgive her betrayal.

Can Tony and Abby race against time to save the CIA operative? Will Tony regain his memory only to learn that she is the only woman he’d ever loved and the only person he ever feared? Does love win this battle? Or do these two souls who are meant to be together take the safe road and part with just a handful of memories?

BIO: As long as she can remember, Geri Foster has been a lover of reading and the written words. In the seventh grade she wore out two library cards and had read every book in her age area of the library. After raising a family and saying good-bye to the corporate world, she tried her hand at writing.

Action, intrigue, danger and sultry romance drew her like a magnet. That’s why she has no choice but to write action-romance suspense. While she reads every genre under the sun, she’s always been drawn to guns, bombs and fighting men. Secrecy and suspense move her to write edgy stories about daring and honorable heroes who manage against all odds to end up with their one true love.

Website http://www.gerifoster.com/
Blog  http://www.gerifoster5.blogspot.com/
Facebook www.facebook.com/gerifoster1
Twitter www.twitter.com/gerifoster
Goodreads www.goodreads.com/gerifoster
Giveaway: Autographed books



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 2/18 Review The Wormhole Book Blog
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2/21 Review Queen of All She Reads
She must’ve sensed his fear for she touched his arm. "It’s going to be okay. I personally owe you that much."

He reached over, hooked his hand around the back of her neck and pulled her mouth to his lips. He’d meant the light contact as a ploy to see if it rattled anything in his memory.

He never intended for the kiss to turn passionate. He pressed against her body and she wrapped her arms around him as if he was a life raft and they were adrift on the open seas.

Her warmth surrounded him and kicked up his heart rate. The intensity of the moment seared something deep inside him to the point of real fear. He had to pull back to the surface so he could gasp for air. For the first time in days something felt vaguely familiar. A dim light in his head turned on and he knew with a certainty that shook him to his toes that he’d kissed this woman before.


Abby Williams shuddered as she marched down the bleak corridor of Lubyanka Prison in the old KGB building that once reigned terror in the hearts and minds of every Russian citizen. Not a good place for an American to be.
The harsh surroundings of peeling plaster, grimy, gray cinderblock walls, and dim light shrouded her like a plastic body bag. A worn strip of unpainted concrete, created by thousands of footsteps, ran down the center of the passageway.
A chubby Russian guard named Boris Gurov ushered Abby to cell block number five where the Federal Security Service of Russia held Falcon agent, Tony Archuletta prisoner.
Her escort stood two inches shorter than her five feet nine and while he seemed pleasant enough, the place gave her the willies. His thin brown hair barely covered his skull. He appeared as nervous and uncomfortable as a druggie during a shakedown. By his jerky movements, Abby could tell he was as anxious as she to get this over with.
The hollow echoes of their footsteps along with the chilling sound of keys clipped to Boris’s belt pulled at the hairs on the back of her neck.
Abby planned to keep the guard so busy checking her out that he wouldn’t notice the obvious. She didn’t wear regulation military issued garb, her shoes were Nine West, and the papers on the clipboard in her hand weren’t legitimate. To solidify the charade, Abby flashed the guard a cheesy smile and hoped he didn’t wet his pants.

Boris eyed her carefully arranged cleavage like a kid would a lollipop. "So where are you taking the prisoner?" he asked loudly.
"I have orders to take him to GRU headquarters where he is to undergo further interrogation," Abby spoke fluently in Russian.
The tubby guard grunted then puffed out his chest. "The Aquarium? That will do you no good. I know this American. Nothing can break him."
"I have never seen a man who could not be made to talk."
Abby stopped at the appropriate cell, pivoted with a military turn and faced the prisoners. She kept her features calm, her demeanor cool and eyes focused. Looking inside, she wondered how the Russian government got away with treating human beings like animals.

The stench of the place alone could gag a cockroach. Those poor men housed behind the steel bars looked more like prisoners of war than everyday run-of-the-mill criminals.

"Tony Archuletta, step forward."
Falcon Securities CEO, Frank Hamilton, had sent Abby to retrieve one of their own from the Russians before he broke under interrogations.
Their plan was simple. She’d dress like a Russian military officer, put him in the car and deliver him to the American Embassy.
As an investigative reporter, Abby routinely pulled off undercover operations to gain information for her newspaper. Plus, the journalist in her wanted a look inside Lubyanka Prison, and they didn’t give walking tours.
She’d actually been on assignment with the American Embassy in Moscow when her boss called. This rescue mission would have originally fallen to a female Falcon agent, but she’d been wounded. Not fatally, but enough to take her out of action for a few days.
When the men in the cell continued to ignore her, Abby allowed her eyes to search the faces of the captives. She counted four, and they all looked ghastly. Filthy, open sores dotted bodies little more than skin and bones. Only soiled rags covered their frames. Abby choked back a sob of anguish at the horrific conditions these poor men suffered.
Soon her gaze fell upon the man she’d come to rescue. Her heart sped up and her breath froze in her throat. Hunger, excitement and longing caused her heart to pause for a second. She hadn’t seen him in eighteen months, two weeks and three days, but it felt like two lifetimes. His dark steely gray eyes cut deeply, holding her hostage while she struggled to keep her composure.
He didn’t appear to recognize her.
Or was he being clever?
At least she hoped he knew enough to get with the program and put on a good act. No one played a role better than Tony. At the young age of thirty-two, many considered him a legend.
If he’d recognized her, he knew enough to play along and not blow the mission.
"He does not understand Russian?" Abby asked, knowing Archuletta was an expert linguist.
"He understands everything. He is just being a shithead. That is all." The guard took out his wooden stick and slapped it across the bars. "Don’t make me come and get you, Archuletta."
The other cellmates hunched their shoulders and crept away as if distance might save them from the guard’s brutality. Even sitting, the Falcon agent appeared taller and more sinister than the others. Predatory and dangerous, he looked mean and calloused. Bare to the waist, he still had a warrior’s bearing.
Goosebumps sprinted down Abby’s spine as her skin prickled. The air around them slowed and the noise faded away. She hadn’t seen him in so long, yet nothing had changed, especially her feelings. Glancing aside, she blinked back tears she believed had dried long ago.
On the opposite side of the bars, Archuletta unhurriedly rose to his feet and snarled like a wild animal. He rolled his upper lip and spat at the guard.
Red-faced, Boris backed up then put his hand on the gun in his hip holster. "Do that again and I will kill you."
The prisoner stood unfazed by the threat.
Grabbing the guard’s arm, her blood pumped harder and faster. Abby quickly intervened. "We do not want him dead."
Had he lost his damn mind? If he continued being a smart ass, Tony could incite the guard to do something foolish. "He must be alive if we are to get anything out of him."
Archuletta’s malicious gaze slid to her face like a wolf sizing up its prey. His strong, sharp features grew even harsher…colder.
A shutter raced through her. The anger on Tony’s face came as an unexpected surprise, and she stepped back, swallowing. "Come closer," Boris ordered.
After a moment, the prisoner complied and put his hands through the small square slot in the bars. He’d probably been through the drill a dozen times. Earlier, Abby provided Boris with her handcuffs, and he now snapped them into place around the American agent’s wrists.
"Step back," she ordered, hoping he wouldn’t refuse. Tony moved to a safe distance. Boris’s eyes narrowed as he cautiously unlocked the door.
The guard took out his gun and entered the cell. He jabbed Archuletta in the back and nudged him out. "The FAS might want you alive, but I tell you this. You fuck with me and I blow your brains out."
"Now, that would be a relief." Tony let out a malicious chuckle.
Abby grimaced at Tony’s behavior. She wished he’d quit the wise guy act and cooperate. The sooner they escaped the better.
With the prisoner leading the way, they marched up the stairs. From behind, Abby noticed he still had that loose-limbed stride that bordered on a swagger. Rags and all, Tony had the sweetest ass on earth. At the top, Archuletta turned left, but the guard stopped him.
"You are not going back there. The GRU has a special treat for you, my friend."
"Yeah, and I have a special treat for you, buska."
Abby inwardly groaned and yearned to smack Tony in the head. He’d just called the Russian guard a pig. If he kept up with the wise cracks, in all likelihood, he’d get them both killed.
"Shut up," Abby said, before hurrying ahead to hold the outside exit open. Boris marched the prisoner out into the cool autumn air while Abby trotted ahead. She opened the rear door of the rental vehicle and stepped aside before Boris got the bright idea she needed additional help with the prisoner.
Cautiously, Boris kept the gun trained on Archuletta’s back. "Get in."
The Falcon agent ducked and folded his long frame into the backseat, but not before sending her a glare that could singe her clothing.
Boris turned to her. "Hold your gun on him while I work the seatbelt. If he makes a wrong move, kill the son of a bitch."

Abby straightened. "Of course." In a hurry to get away, she licked her dry lips and hoped Boris didn’t notice her eagerness.
When they got out of there, Abby had a few choice words she’d bestow on agent Archuletta, and she didn’t plan to hold back. As she pulled out her gun, the Falcon agent gave her a look of disgust.
Well, thank you, too.Uncurling, Boris slammed the door and turned to her. "Be careful. This man is a killer. Don’t take any chances."
Abby got into the car and managed to keep a straight face as she clutched the steering wheel and started the engine. "I’m sure I won’t have any problems."
Instead of waiting for a reply, she gunned the engine and backed out of the parking spot, hoping they’d get away before someone learned of their deception. If that happened, they’d both be back in Lubyanka Prison, and she knew the officials would show no mercy.
It had rained earlier and the tires squealed on the wet pavement as she sped across the designated parking area and on to the main street.
Abby turned right toward Red Square and merged with the daily commuters. After several minutes, she searched for an isolated place where she could safely remove Tony’s handcuffs. Even though a little miffed with him, she knew he must be uncomfortable. No doubt he’d want food and clothes immediately, and she had to contact the Embassy and notify them of their arrival.
Spotting a dilapidated warehouse up ahead, Abby turned into the deserted area and moved around behind the building into an alleyway used for deliveries. She pulled the emergency brake and put the car in park.
After taking off her brown wig, she shook her head, allowing her hair to fall free. Finally safe, she rolled her shoulders then allowed them to drop, releasing all the tension in her upper body. To ease her stiff neck, she turned her head from side to side, and then slumped back in the seat. God, she’d never do anything like that again.
Looking through the rearview mirror, Abby wanted to strangle the stubborn agent she’d just rescued. "You know, Tony, you could have made it a lot easier back there. That wasn’t the time to insult the guard."
"Yes, really. I could’ve ended up in that cell with you. I told Frank I wasn’t comfortable playing the role of a spy. You need to be thankful our bosses are on such good terms."

"Should I?" He arched a dark eyebrow and stared at her from beneath lowered eyelids. "Are you asking for a thank you?"
"Hell, yes. I managed to get you out of prison where you were deteriorating to nothing. How much longer do you think you’d survive?"
His gray eyes didn’t show gratitude or appreciation. With two weeks in lockup, the beginning of a thick black beard covered the bottom half of his face. No matter how obnoxious she thought he might be, she still felt sorry for his condition and the way he’d been treated.
"It won’t be coming."
"A thank you. I don’t do apologies."
"Now you’re just being an ass, and we both know you’re capable of that."
"We do?" He chuckled.
Tilting her head and narrowing her gaze, Abby wondered at his strange choice of words. He mocked and taunted her like a schoolboy, and his one-liners were getting on her nerves. Thankfully, this would all be over in a few minutes.
Just as she turned, a metal rope swung past her eyes and wrapped around her throat choking her.
Oh God, no!She clawed Tony’s hands trying to release the pressure so she could breathe. Why would he want to kill her?
She managed to get her left palm wedged between the chain connecting the handcuffs and her throat. His grip tightened. Black spots danced in front of her eyes, and Abby fought the urge to panic. She honked the horn, desperately trying to get someone’s attention.
Using what little strength she had left, Abby pulled out her gun. She brought the weapon behind her head and pressed it against Tony Archuletta’s temple. Closing her eyes, she squeezed the trigger.


These are the questions to be answered from 1-10

QuestionRating 1/10Comments
Has reading this book caused you to be interested on reading additional novels by this author and would you recommend this book to friends or family who like this genre?

Do you feel the world or situation was well developed to the point that you were able to visualize it?

Did the author engage you to the point that you had a hard time putting the book down?

Were you emotionally connected to the main characters?

Were you emotionally connected to the secondary characters?

Were the characters, believable?

Do you feel that the story was well paced to keep your interest?

Was the dialogue in the story believable and interesting?

Were the love scenes satisfying and appropriate to the story and characters?

Overall, how did you like this book?


Out of the Night (Falcon, #3)Out of the Night by Geri Foster
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Out of the Night by Geri Foster is a 2013 publication. I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Abby Williams is a reporter sent undercover to help free an American from a KGB prison in Russia.
Tony Archuletta is Falcon agent being held by the Federal Security Service of Russia. However, he was held in the regular population of prisoners. Once Abby has gotten him free it becomes apparent that Tony has no memory of his past. That includes his past with Abby.
Meanwhile a CIA agent is being held prisoner by a man out to destroy America. While Falcon agents search for him they need Tony to recover his memory, which he is slowly. That's great for their mission, but not for Abby personally. When Tony recovers his memory fully he will remember why the two of them parted ways and will go back to hating her.
Events taking place in Cairo, Russia and Dallas, Texas converge as a plot is uncovered involving a shady greedy senator and diabolical plot to destroy America.
Tony and Abby are faced with one dangerous situation after another all the while rekindling their romance... at least until Tony remembers the reason they parted.
This book has a lot of action and suspense, a well thought out plot and hot steamy romance. I loved Tony! He is awesome and then some. Abby makes a great partner for him and I they worked really well together. The other stories at play with Joe and his wife was also a good story. I have to confess this is the first book I have read by this author and I think I have found a new romantic suspense author to follow. This book was so high energy and unique with all the globetrotting and backstabbing and betrayals and devious plots and truly evil bad guys.
Overall this one is an A.

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