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McAllister Justice #1

Digital Velocity

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Elite hacker vs. psychopathic killer.

One survivor.

Amateur sleuth Lexi Donovan is a white-hat hacker from a small town near Portland, Oregon. Armed with snark and grit, she levels the playing field against criminals using bits and bytes, with anonymity as her shield. Never did she imagine meeting her equal on the dark net.

When a series of murders ends with her friend’s death, she discovers the killer’s digital betting arena on the dark web. The cunning psychopath leaves obscure riddles in his gory game of cat and mouse to lead police officers to the next victim.

In seeking justice, Lexi directs anonymous tips to Detective McAllister, an alpha-male cop hard-wired for justice, and inadvertently sends him into a firefight. Her intent to stop the killing spree backfires and centers the killer’s crosshairs on her.

With a dog for protection and sarcasm for her shield, she straddles the law to bring a killer to justice while navigating the murky waters of betrayal, deception, and passion.

308 pages, ebook

First published July 10, 2017

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About the author

Reily Garrett

65 books773 followers
This author is also published under Shyla Wolff.

Reily Garrett is a writer, mother, and companion to three long coat German shepherds. When not working with her dogs, she’s sitting at her desk with her furkids by her side.
Author of chilling suspense and snarky romance, her stories include romantic thrillers and paranormal romance, . Regardless of genre, each book delves into a dark and twisted imagination yet is tempered with romance and a touch of humor.
Reviews by Kirkus Reviews, San Francisco Bay Review, and BestThrillers.com best describe her work:
"This could be James Patterson, Lee Child, and Tess Gerritsen rolled into one, but the dark, twisted methods used by the serial killer could surprise even those readers…” - San Francisco Bay Review
“…steamy, seductive police procedural…” - BestThrillers.com
“…well-researched thriller that remains romantically genuine throughout.” - Kirkus Review

Prior experience in the Military Police, private investigations, and as an ICU nurse gives her fiction a real-world flavor.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 92 reviews
Profile Image for Christine on hiatus, see “About me”.
589 reviews1,137 followers
July 19, 2017
Well, it was time to go outside the box again, and for this go around I selected a romantic suspense novel, Digital Velocity, which is book #1 in the new McAllister Justice series. It is also a police procedural, my favorite genre of all, so, OK, I cheated a bit. In any event, I had a good time with Digital Velocity.

Just prior to digging into this one, I read the prequel novella to the series, Tender Echoes. The prequel introduces us to hacker extraordinaire Lexi, who plays a big role in book #1, and briefly introduces us to the five McAllister brothers. Four are members of the police, and one is a PI. There is also a sister who is an attorney. The McAllister brothers are tightly knit and love to banter and kiddingly insult each other. Ethan McAllister, a police detective and fourth brother, takes center stage in Digital Velocity, along with Lexi.

I really liked these characters. The brotherly ribbing is on the corny side, but that’s OK. Ethan’s partner Larrick, a bit of a cowboy type, is a good add to the mix. We get to know Ethan, and especially Lexi, really well, which is a big plus in my book. Both Ethan and Lexi have dogs, Diego and Hoover.

The plot is a good one, though pretty straightforward in that there are not a lot of threads to resolve. Lexi is anonymously feeding cybertips to Ethan in hopes that he can use the info to crack the case of a repeat killer. Eventually, necessity brings Lexi and Ethan together. At that point we get a slow buildup to a highly suspenseful and thrilling climax. In fact, the whole last half of the book had me on needles. The characters at a late point in the story were in such a predicament I saw no way out; that kept the pages turning pretty darn fast!

Ms. Garrett obviously put a lot of time into researching cutting edge technology and the dark web, which are heavily featured here (in a very readable way). As an aside, as I was reading this story, it struck me how technology has partnered with evil to create a much more frightening and violent world than just a few decades ago. A very sad state of affairs in my opinion. It makes one wonder if the marvels of technology are really worth it.

There are two areas where I am in disagreement with most of the readers who have already posted reviews. The majority loved the descriptive passages and Ms. Garrett’s writing style. To me there is a little too much description, and the flow suffers on occasion from cumbersome phraseology. On the other hand, several readers found the first half of the book too slow. I actually really enjoyed the build up of the plot and the time taken to develop the two main characters.

I thought the romance arc was exceptionally well done (though I don’t have much to compare it with other than the one erotica book I read) with the emphasis on the feelings between Ethan and Lexi rather than pure lust. The sex scenes sizzle in an emotional way.

Overall, I enjoyed my foray into romantic suspense. I highly recommend that Tender Echoes, a fast read, be read prior to Digital Velocity as it provides an excellent introduction to Lexi and her cyber connection with Ethan. I’m very curious to see where Ms. Garrett goes with the next story—perhaps she will feature one of the other McAllister cops?
I recommend Digital Velocity for all fans of romantic suspense.
Profile Image for Siobhan.
4,491 reviews469 followers
April 1, 2017
Digital Velocity was a truly wonderful read, a prime example of why Reily Garrett quickly became one of my favourite authors. Before I give an in-depth review, however, I which to make a couple of quick points.

First up: I was fortunate enough to be given the chance to beta read this story. It was my first time beta reading, and I found it to be a wonderful introduction to the world of beta reading. My rating and review, however, are not influenced by this fact.

Second: it’s a very strong four-star read, and could have been a five-star rating were I kinder with my five star ratings. I so rarely give out five star ratings. With this one, I opted out of doing so because it’s not my favourite Reily Garrett read. Yes, it’s a very strong four-star rating, but I didn’t quite love it as much as I loved her Carnal Obsession book. As I did not give her Carnal Obsession a five-star rating, I realised I couldn’t quite give this a five-star rating. Despite this, it’s left me with the firm belief that Reily Garrett will one day be one of the few authors to pull a five star rating from me.

Third, and finally: you should go and give Tender Echoes a read. Tender Echoes is a wonderful prequel to this story. Although not a necessity, it is certainly a worthwhile read. Truthfully, I read it after reading Digital Velocity and enjoyed it just as much after the fact as I would have if I’d read it first. Still, it makes more sense to read it first.

Now, onto the important stuff. How I felt about this one.

Digital Velocity is the first book in the McAllister Justice series. After just one book, I’m super excited to see where the series goes next. I know from prior Reily Garrett books that she writes a wonderful series, and this series is promising to be just as addictive as her other work. Honestly, I cannot wait to get my hands on the next book. The sooner I can read it, the sooner I’ll be a happy fangirl. Without a doubt, Reily Garrett has guaranteed I’ll be following another of her series.

Digital Velocity has many of the trademarks of her Carnal series. There’s lots of action. There are many hot moments. There’s beautiful chemistry. Digital Velocity is without the kink seen in the Carnal series. Such a thing fails to lessen the impact of this story though. The romance is just as steamy, leaving you more than pulled into the story.

From the moment you start, you’re unable to put the story down. There’s so much mystery and suspense that you’re constantly one edge to see what happens next. It’s a gritty read, with events happening back to back. Every time you think things may be calming, you’re hit with another element of the story. The suspense and action of this story is done so well, undoubtedly leaving you pulled in. I really don’t want to say too much about it, because of spoilers, but know the story will leave you addicted and second-guessing. It’s more than worth the read if you’re a lover of suspense.

Of course, it’s a romantic suspense. Fear not lovers of the romantic element, as that is just as well done. As I’ve already said, it’s a steamy read. There’s so much more to it than the simple joining of bodies, though. The chemistry between the main characters is wonderful, and watching as they slowly come to trust each other is so enjoyable. Kendra and Connor as still my favourite Reily Garrett couple, but Ethan and Lexi are certainly a strong second place. I was just as addicted to the romance element of the story as I was the action.

Overall, Digital Velocity is another wonderful Reily Garrett read. It is a wonderful standalone read, whilst ensuring you want more in the form of the rest of the McAllister Justice series.
Profile Image for Simply Love Book Reviews.
6,949 reviews827 followers
July 7, 2017

First let me say that there is a free novella called Tender Echoes that sets up Digital Velocity, it’s not a romance, it solely gives you background on the characters in DV. You can read Digital Velocity without reading Tender Echoes, however Tender Echoes is a quick read and FREE.

Digital Velocity started out slow for me, I kept reading because I was intrigued by Ethan, Lexi and the secondary characters, about halfway through the pace picked up and I could not put the book down.

Lexi has lived an extremely hard life and is very guarded. She is loyal to those who helped her survive life on the streets and determined to help as many people as she can with her ability to hack into pretty much anything, illegally. Ethan is a hard core, straight edged police officer who is determined to solve every case that comes his way.  Lexi sends Ethan anonymous tips to solve crimes, until one crime forces her to reveal herself to Ethan.  They team up to solve this murder but have to tread lightly because they are on opposite sides of the law. Their undeniable hot chemistry makes it impossible for them to not fall for each other. Ethan is everything I would want in a man, he is sexy, alpha and protective, while still letting Lexi have the space she needs to do her job and be the strong woman she is. I loved Ethan, his partner and his family, their interactions adds some comedy to a truly suspenseful story.

With characters you can’t help but love, amazing chemistry and a plot that will keep you guessing until the end, Digital Velocity is a must read for romantic suspense fans!

Review copy provided for a voluntary review.
Profile Image for Kayla Krantz.
Author 58 books719 followers
February 11, 2019
I always love a good psychological read so this was right up my alley. When Detective Ethan receives a strange text message he is led into a game of cat and mouse to figure out the identity of a killer.

I loved Lexi’s character. She was strong and helpful in Ethan’s mission, making the book much more interesting. I’ve read a lot of detective novels, and I adore the whole angle of the dark web and a hacker helping the investigation along.
Characterization is also well done in this book. The McAllisters have playful banter that reads realistically and makes it seem as if they are real people. While the buildup of suspense is a bit slow, it definitely pays off in the end.
Profile Image for Aly.
1,839 reviews56 followers
July 30, 2017
This is my first book from this author. I enjoyed this book very much. Lexi Donovan and Ethan McAllister are a great characters. The dark net is not new but is a great setting for scenes in this book. I thought this book was very up to date for the times and I enjoyed trying to guess what would happened next in this book (which I try to do in many books I read). A little sweet romance was a good addition in this book for me as well. This book has quite a bit to be proud of for me. I enjoyed this book and would read more from this author. * I received this book from the author and this is my honest review*
59 reviews12 followers
April 14, 2017


Profile Image for Mary .
779 reviews54 followers
March 27, 2017
I dove into digital velocity from the beginning excited about the murder, mystery, and who done it style. It certainly didn't disappoint and I was guessing right up until the murderer made it known. I had suspicions along the way, but didn't count on the killer being who they were.
This story covers the meeting of Lexi and Ethan. We also got to me the whole McAllister clan and although a small part, I hope we get more about their Mom and sister. This big family was always making sure their younger brother, Ethan, was harassed and looked out for in any way possible.
Lexi fell into helping Ethan after he helped her once before. This story is the prequel novella and I would like to check it out. I feel we will learn more about Lexi. She has a background that is jaded, guarded, and lonely. All this makes her into a character that has severe trust issues unless it involves a computer or a dog.
There is a sick twisted killer about in this small town and Ethan and his partner must stop the killer before they go on a spree. Ethan's partner provided much comedic relief during some tense times while investigating. This investigation will have you looking at clues with them and forming your own plan of who did it and why.
The story was well written with vivid imagery and wordage. While I found it riveting at times, it wasn't until I was almost halfway through that it picked up and moved along. I found the first half a little sluggish for me personally. There was suspense, drama, love, and tragedy. I would recommend this to anyone that enjoy's romantic suspenseful reads.
Profile Image for Julie.
583 reviews65 followers
August 6, 2017


This is the first book I've read by Reily Garrett and while I jump into this one totally blind, I really didn't know what to expect on these pages. I found the blurb to be pretty interesting, so when the author asked me to give it a read, I jumped on it.

The beginning of the book was a little slow for me and I think that it's because you're meeting multiple characters and you're caught in a game of catch up at first while you're delving into the plot. It's all completely necessary information but it did slow the book down a little bit for me. I found out after the fact that there is a novella that precedes this book. While I'm under the impression that it's not a "must read" for the series, I'm fairly certain that the back story included in that novella would have enriched what I was reading in this one and maybe make things seem more like a reintroduction rather than an overwhelming jumble.

Now once you get into the book and past the beginning where you're meeting everyone, things do speed up. I was blowing through pages but then it slows down again and speeds up. I soon found myself on a literary roller coaster. Which made the book lag and then add in the fact that personally, it was just a little too descriptive and you have another lag. I just prefer to have a lot of excitement and a book that chugs along at a fairly quick pace. I'm pretty sure it's because I have to put down and then pick up whatever I'm reading multiple times throughout the day so I need something that chugs along quickly or I become lost and bored within the plot.

The characters were okay. I really didn't have this massive connection to Lexi and like I said before, I'm pretty sure I would feel differently if I had read the novella. Apparently, that is where you get to know Lexi on a deeper level and really dive into who she is and what her motivations are. I did like Ethan but ... this will sound weird ... I liked him better when hew as with his brothers. When you first meet Ethan's brothers ... you'll fall in love with them immediately. I'm totally serious; all of them were absolutely fabulous and the camaraderie between them was wonderfully ornery and endearing. So when Ethan was with his brothers, the story came to life for me.

When it comes down to it, I think that the reason this wasn't a five star book for me was because it was a little too descriptive for my tastes and I didn't really connect with the main characters. But those are all just personal things and this book is rated highly on Goodreads and Amazon, so don't take just my word for it.

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Check out more of my reviews at Little Miss Bookmark!
Profile Image for Books Laid Bare.
2,275 reviews35 followers
April 17, 2017
4.5 Stars
Kicking of a new series from Reily Garrett, Digital Velocity has everything that you could possibly be looking for.
Ethan McAllister is a cop and a darn good one but when he is shot at the site of an anonymous tip off, it opens up a whole new direction for his personal and professional life.
Lexi was the one that supplied the tip off that led to Ethan and his partner Larrick discovering not only the body of a woman but also being caught in the hail of bullets that ensued. Feeling more than a little responsible for the fact that one of the good guys on the force is injured.
Ethan helped her in past and she has never forgotten that when she needed someone to believe and help her, it was Ethan that did just that and helped not only her but others to escape a situation that had potentially dire consequences for them all.
Frannie had been important to Lexi in a way that she had never been able to repay, so now that she was gone, Lexi felt as if she owed it to her to help track down her killer but she was happy behind her computer screen, the face to face stuff, well that was where Ethan came into play.
His getting shot meant that they had time to spend together working the details of the case as his leg recovered and the more time the spent together the more connected their feeling became. Digging behind the scenes, she uses her skills as a hacker to search the internet for clues to help Ethan and the force to bring Frannie’s killer to justice but all that rooting around means that she is suddenly front and centre in the investigation and firmly in the cross hairs of the killer with a target will a truly painted on her back.
The struggle now was one that no-one could have anticipated because now Ethan had to face the fact that he had to keep her safe, all the while trying to track down the killer before he strikes again?
There is a lot that I could say, not only about the storyline but also about the pace and style of the book but in all honesty, this is a story that should be experienced, the depth of detail and authenticity of the actions and incidents were second to none. I thought the author was able to place me centrally into the storyline and to orchestrate the story all around me, I felt engaged and engulfed. Ethan and Lexi were superb but I thoroughly enjoyed all the sharp banter that all of the guys brought to the page. These were guys that I wanted to spend time with and that I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall in the squad room with, they called it as they saw it and took their opportunities when they were presented.
A superb start to the series, can’t wait for the next book!!
Profile Image for Strider28.
429 reviews13 followers
April 17, 2017
I loved this book! Author Reily Garrett sucks you into this book from page one until the very end! Digital Velocity is a series that will each be a standalone book but with many of the same characters. There is a family with four very protective alpha males and their awesome sister.
In this book Homicide detective Ethan McAllister keeps getting tips for murders from an anonymous source. Unfortunately the tips are sometimes too late.
After one gruesome murder that is personal for the tipster she finally comes forward but only to Ethan. It turns out Lexi is a computer whiz and has been learning about these crimes on the dark web. But the more time Lexi spends searching for clues in the dark web the faster the killer escalates his killing spree.
With the help of Ethan and later his brothers Lexi begins to try and play the killers sick game. This puts her in extreme danger and as Ethan's feelings for Lexi grow he's determined to keep her safe. But with another computer genius on the lose, one who always seems to be one step ahead of them can he really keep Lexi safe?
The mystery and intrigue of this book kept me on the edge of my seat! I could not put this book down. Trying to figure out who the killer was about drove me crazy.
I loved the characters in this book. Ethan was so protective of Lexi but Lexi was strong and independent. She led the way in the investigation using her internet skills. There is some comic relief in that Ethan and two of his brothers are in law enforcement and don't want to know about Lexis illegal hacking into so many computers.
I can't wait for the next installment of this series to come out!
I reviewed this book voluntarily.
145 reviews25 followers
April 24, 2019
Despite my best efforts, I found it very difficult to finish this book. It is book one in a romantic suspense series where the emphasis on romance is very heavy. She is always quivering and he is always in the opposite state. A book which, being so full of overblown clichés, tires you out.

The romance in the book can be summed up by these quotes:

A quirky smile and devilment in her gaze spoke of unique pranks and an endless sense of humor.”

“Either way, the intensity of her nonverbal cues pricked his investigative instincts.”

“Momentarily frozen, his entire nervous system seemed to come alive in her presence, everything heightened, more sensitive. He couldn’t quite define the faint but enticing aroma that ensnared his senses, yet she appeared oblivious to her allure and pulled him in just the same. Desire sluiced through his blood, compelling him to reach for her.”

“In fact, he was relieved with her arrival for reasons that had nothing to do with the sudden electrical hum touring his nervous system.”

“She curled her fingers against his chest, marking him in a way only Lexi could by blasting filaments of small charges to squeeze his lungs. Nothing had ever felt so good as his body hummed with the sparks firing through his nervous system to leave him in a state of confused craving. The shocked-shitless expression delineated by her open mouth and softening body stood forefront in his mental catalog of memorable experiences.”

“Intelligent emerald eyes didn’t detract from her appeal, merely added another hurdle for him to navigate.”

“In truth, he was gentling a filly.”

“…he took every opportunity to graze her arm or shoulder as if trying to tame a wild horse….”

“Yet the humor dancing in his gaze said it all.”

“He’d always likened himself to the extra male in that his search for female companionship led to simpering, fragile women unable to keep stride with his lusty appetites.”

“This wasn’t the lust he’d felt with beautiful women, this entailed a desire to merge, become one mind full of dreams and cozy nights, days of discovering new delights, and providing her with a buffer from the harsh realities of life.”

“Long before his mind reconciled the facts, his heart had claimed Lexi as essential for his future, his very breath.”

For other occasions there are other clichés:

“A lazy March breeze combed its cool fingers through his short hair while the deep foreboding received with the initial text message blossomed into multiple horrific scenarios…”

“No broken lamps, overturned chairs, or rug stains indicated a struggle, yet the grim portent of violence hung like a dark nebula, a warning of caution.”

“Dark clouds swept across the sky by the stiff breeze bending small saplings in preparation for another storm parroted the commotion now felt within.”

“The growl erupting from Ethan’s throat was primal, guttural, and instinctual.”
Profile Image for Rosie Amber.
Author 0 books114 followers
July 26, 2017
Digital Velocity is book #1 in the McAllister Justice series of American police crime. The book is set in Callouston city and opens with police officers Ethan McAllister and his partner Larrick acting on an anonymous tip-off.

They find the body of a brutally tortured, abused woman, and get caught in crossfire from two intruders. Ethan takes a bullet in his leg, but they do take down one of the men. Feeling guilty that Ethan got shot, anonymous caller Lexi visits him in hospital to apologise. In a past incident, Ethan had put away the pimp who had threatened Lexi , and enabled freedom for some friends of hers. He’s earned her respect.

Lexi works in computing and is an expert hacker. The dead women had previously taken a chance on Lexi, helping her get out of the gutter, get a home, a job and a better life. Lexi owes it to Frannie to help find her killer; but she’s unwilling to become more than a secret informant.

With Ethan on sick leave until his leg recovers, he slowly gains Lexi’s confidence and the pair work together behind the investigation scenes. Lexi digs deep through the dark net in an unsavoury world of hackers and villains, and discovers a site boasting about the murder and taking bids on video footage for the next victim. However, the perpetrator is clever, and she can’t find out anything about him through her back door methods.

Romantic feelings grow between Ethan and Lexi as they work alongside Ethan’s police brothers and his partner. Possible clues lead them to frustrating dead ends, and the victim list grows, until Lexi makes one too many illegal moves and becomes next on the murderers agenda. Can Ethan keep his promise to keep her safe?

This is a good solid murder mystery, written in a relaxed style with plenty of banter and innuendo between the male characters. There is a good twist at the end and some believable red herrings along the way. The author draws from her own experiences as a private investigator and member of the military police, to add an authentic touch to the incidents and procedures. A good start to the series.
Profile Image for Tammy Tate.
Author 25 books58 followers
March 12, 2017
Digital Velocity is a suspenseful tale about two detectives responding to an anonymous tip to do a welfare check on a local resident. Upon arriving, the detectives, who have been partners for three years, take humorous jabs at each other as they search the grounds and try to get a glimpse inside the house to substantiate concern for the woman's well being.

After seeing blood spatter and her motionless body on the kitchen floor through a window it gives them probably cause to enter. They soon learn they are not alone. Two masked intruders are still inside the house. One of the men they subdue and the other flees but not before delivering an unexpected shotgun blast to Ethan's thigh.

The home invasion raises many questions for Det. Sanders. Especially with a killer terrorizing the Pacific Northwest.

I highly recommend this action packed thriller to anyone searching for a well-written story abundant with superb description and witty dialog.
Profile Image for Petula.
2,634 reviews55 followers
July 4, 2017
Detective Ethan McAllister and his partner are on their way to a possible crime in progress. An anonymous online source has given him the information. What they find when they get there proves they are dealing with a particularly vicious and sick minded individual. Is his anonymous tipster involved or not??.
Lexie Donovan is a hacker who stumbled across a killer's website. She has done her best to hide her identity, but he has her in his sights.
This is a seriously scary and clever killer our hero is after. Can our heroine trace him before he makes her the star of his latest work??
Once you start this you will not be able to put it down. Although there is a bit of tech speak in it, it's not enough to confuse us that are not so well versed. There is also no possible way you can guess the killer until our author tells you who it is.
A really intense read, I loved it.
Profile Image for Vickie.
329 reviews17 followers
July 16, 2017
3.5 Stars

The deadliest weapons are the ones we never see.

Digital Velocity is book one in Reily Garrett’s McAllister Justice Series although it was slow paced to start with once the pace picked up I couldn’t put it down.

Ethan McAllister is a police detective who is on the hunt for a serial killer. When he and his partner Larrick Robertson receive an anonymous tip off about a possible robbery they get more than they bargained for. Leaving Ethan shot.

Lexi Donovan has risen from a teenage orphan living on the streets to a keyboard prodigy, sending anonymous tips to the police the last thing she wanted to do was get one of them shot but when she discovers the “Dark Net” houses a playground for the morally depleted and criminally insane she has no choice but to turn up at Ethan’s door and try to discover their identities once and for all.

Romantic suspense is one of my favourite genres and I wasn’t disappointed with this one. Although it was slowed paced to start and at times didn’t really hold my interest I decided to keep reading and was glad I was as once the pace picked up I could put it down. Overall an enjoyable read. A well thought out plot with likeable characters. I will continue with the series.

Recommended to fans of romantic suspense.

**Arc provided courtesy of the Author in exchange of an honest review for Words Turn Me On**

June 3, 2018
I want to first thank you, author, for reaching out to me and asking me for the privilege to review Digital Velocity. The first of the McAllister Justice series and I am curious to see where the series goes next. An engaging read and kept my attention throughout. Super climatic (no pun intended). Both the action and romantic elements are super intriguing and captivating.
Profile Image for Mandi.
2,300 reviews721 followers
July 9, 2017
I have to dnf this. The beginning is just a bit too - chaotic or jumbled. I can't get into it.
Profile Image for Julianne Redmon.
267 reviews1 follower
July 4, 2017
This may be my favorite book by Reily Garrett so far...maybe. I mean come on, you have to admit those Crofton brothers are pretty hard to compare to! But Ethan McAllister certainly gives them a run for their money...I can't say enough how much I love this book!

The story itself is AMAZING! I'm one of those people that always have to figure out a mystery (as in I'm the one in the crowded movie theater on opening night of a horror movie yelling out who the killer is and where they are hiding). I have to tell you that this one kept me guessing until the end! The crimes were so disturbing that you wonder what type of person could commit them, why is he doing this? I was hooked from the start and felt like I was holding my breath the entire time. I'm not going to give details because I don't want to spoil it, but whew what a ride. And in all of that you have a budding romance, a strong family united to protect their own, and a betrayal that will rock the world of all involved.

In Tender Echos Lexi helps Detective Ethan McAllister solve a case and nearly gets herself killed in the process. From that time forward she is a mystery to him, helping him solve crimes with anonymous texts and presents on his front porch. That is until one of the cases that Ethan catches hits a little too close to home for Lexi. Growing up an orphan on the streets has taught Lexi to value her privacy, her anonymity. But her loyalty to her friend and mentor win out and she lets Ethan know who she is. She is an easy character to like; she's intelligent and scrappy, yet painfully afraid of the world around her. She is comfortable behind a keyboard, but not so much so in the real world dealing with real people. When she does venture out though she is brave in pursuit of justice, almost recklessly so. Ethan is exactly what she needs. He is patient, worldly, and grew up around a pack of brothers that are also in law enforcement. He has a supportive family who back him up whenever he needs it...something Lexi never had. He is completely alpha, without being an overconfident jerk. Protective, sweet, understanding all come to mind as I think about the things he does for her.

The characters are well-developed and the romance is extremely well-placed in the midst of suspense and drama. It's not just a quick chapter where they meet and then they roll in the hay then boom happily ever after. You actually follow the relationship as it grows and understand the reservations on both sides, in the middle of a chase to catch a serial killer before he snatches his next victim. Romance and death, love and suspense are so intertwined that you can't separate them from each other.
Profile Image for Sandra Shipman ~ Two Book Pushers.
1,887 reviews45 followers
October 4, 2017
Digital Velocity is the first full-length novel in the McAllister Justice series. There is a free prequel called Tender Echoes that you can either read before or after. It will introduce you to the main characters within a novella. I do not want to spoil anything especially since its suspense involving the criminal mind.

Lexi is a tech genius. A programmer by day and a hacker by night. She only uses her skills for good and has been sending the hot detective by the name of Ethan McAllister tips for the last few months. She can not be traced. She doesn’t want to be seen but she does want him to take her seriously. Especially, after the scene she sent him into. It was now time to show her what she could really do...in person.

Ethan and Lexi have a complex type of relationship. They have to learn to trust each other. Stay close. Watch the other’s back. All while tracking down a killer. One that winds his ways through the dark web. He is a sick fucker with a crazy fan base. One that leaves nothing but riddles behind. Will they be able to find the killer before it’s too late?

I thought this was a suspenseful and engaging story. If I didn’t have so much to do over the last few days I would have finished the book in a day or two instead of almost five. It was killing me to walk away each time. I enjoyed the character’s dynamic. They had their own kind of banter, flirtiness, and respect. And the dogs! They are kickass dogs. Ethan’s brothers were a fun bunch. The definitely like to give one another shit. I am assuming the rest of the series will be with them and I am looking forward to it. Oh and Larrick, Ethan’s partner. He is um...unique. Lol

Overall...it’s suspenseful, complex, and fun. It’s one twisted game that had me guessing.


“Aw, you used your best camo jacket. I’m honored.”

“What made you want to work homicide?”
“It was the only division left without a brother in it.” Ethan rolled his eyes.

“I don’t want gentle. I want you, unleashed and unhinged. I know what lies beneath the smooth exterior, and that’s the one I want inside me.”

Profile Image for John Podlaski.
Author 7 books62 followers
October 8, 2017
I was gifted a copy of Digital Velocity by the author in exchange for an honest review. I should also mention here that this is a genre I don't normally read.

The first chapters grabbed my attention and I expected to fly through this story. I was soon discouraged as Ethan was recovering from being shot by the killer and is introduced to 19 -year-old Lexi, a computer whiz. It was then that the story bogged down and too much time was spent describing the flirtation between the two and getting results from the police lab. Ethan has 4 brothers and a sister, who all come to his aid and appear jealous of Lexi and his relationship. The author also writes a couple of breathtaking sex scenes between virgin Lexi and the conqueror, Ethan.

Almost halfway through, Ethan is back on duty and the story picked up momentum, Lexi used her skills to find the killer who was accepting bids to see an extreme murder sequence on an underworld website. Unfortunately, as she began to play a game with the killer, he discovered her identity and puts her on the list of future exhibits. Lexi uses her street-smart skills and heads out on an investigation of her own to find evidence to identify her killer. She did not expect the killer to be in the place she broke into.

The story is now on a rollercoaster and takes readers twisting and turning and almost started the habit of biting my fingernails. The suspense is right up there! Will Ethan find the killer before Lexi is sacrificed? The villain seems to remain a step ahead of everybody else. When the killer is identified - I dropped my jaw! If you are into romance and police action then you will enjoy this story. Ms. Garrett blew me away!

John Podlaski, author
'Cherries: A Vietnam War Novel' and 'When Can I Stop Running?'
Profile Image for Mary Mooney.
2,374 reviews53 followers
September 16, 2017
I love a good romantic suspense, so when the author contacted about reading her book, I thought it sounded really good. After reading the blurb I wanted to start it then but I had to finish what I was reading, I am not one of those people who can read two books at one. I would so get the reviews mixed up. Anyway here is my review of Digital Velocity.
Detective Ethan McAllister and his partner are on their way to what might be a crime in progress. And it makes him wonder if the anonymous tip he got is somehow involved. But the tip is too late, Ethan ends up shot in the crossfire and one of the killers gets shot too. Soon after another woman is brutally killed. And Ethan's anonymous tipster has revealed herself and is helping them to try and solve these murders before anyone else is killed.
Lexi Donovan was raised on the streets and knows about bad guys and bad things. She knows her way around computers too. So she decides that helping Ethan catch the killer is better then not helping because the killer had already killed the one person that meant the most to her. While she searched the dark net of the web, Ethan did the leg work. They make a great team until the killer sets his sights on Lexi.
Can Ethan keep her safe without letting his heart take over? Will Lexi learn to trust Ethan to protect her? Will Ethan's brothers drive then both crazy? And you will NOT believe who the killer really is, OMG!!!
This is a really great suspense story that has tow people that are drawn together in the worst of circumstances. It does seems to start slow but don't stop reading because you will be missing a great story.
**Copy provided by the author and this is my honest review**
Profile Image for Deanna from Deanna's World.
780 reviews47 followers
November 11, 2017
I really should not read books with serial killers in them. I have a weak stomach for them and some are worse than others. This one falls in the "worse" category because the author devotes entire chapters to the sick inside workings of the serial killer's mind and how he goes about torturing his victims. There's also way too much internal dialogue of a rather gruesome kind going on. By the time the serial killer got his hands on the heroine and was going into detail about how he was going to torture then murder her, I had enough.
Aside from how gruesome this was, I also had a hard time connecting with the main characters based on the writing style of the author. The writing compared to the prequel, Tender Echoes, has smoothed out a bit but it is still ponderous and cumbersome. The prose is heavy and bogs down the pace of the story. There's too much descriptive narrative and most of it drags the story along like dead weight. Plus let's not forget Ms Garrett's penchant for being graphic about all things serial killer torture.
While this is supposed to be a romance, romantic suspense rather, and it had the requisite sex scenes to make it a romance (and probably a happy ending), I didn't feel like I was reading a romance. It did not feel romantic at all. Basically, the whole thing dragged and when it wasn't dragging, it was horrible and gruesome.

Deanna's World

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Profile Image for Jada Ryker.
Author 25 books48 followers
September 17, 2017
To Catch a Serial Killer

Lexi lived on the streets, with a marginalized group of women as her family. They made tremendous sacrifices for her, so she’d have a better life. Lexi learned to hold her heart safe and sound. She’s wary, and it’ll take a special man to get past her barriers.

Ethan is surrounded by his family. His brothers work in some form of law enforcement, while his sister is an attorney. Matt went the K-9 route. Lucas works in the narcotics division, which generally keeps him out in the field. Billy works in the criminal division. Caden is a private investigator, catching crooks from a different perspective. Ethan took homicide, because that’s all that was left. His partner Larrick is a maverick, both in his approach to law enforcement and to life.

Ethan’s on the track of a serial killer. Lexi helps him from a distance, using her incredible IT skills. When Lexi’s friend and mentor is killed in a particularly horrific way, she decides it’s time to work with Ethan outside cyberspace.

Talented author Reily Garrett weaves an edgy, at times dark murder mystery. Many authors choose to skirt around the more difficult social issues. Ms. Garrett takes the reader along with her as she tackles homelessness and human trafficking with compassion and in-your-gut realism. She explores the attraction between Ethan and Lexi with a more gentle hand, balancing the graphic violence with a sweet romance. Ms. Garrett is also a genius with dialogue. Her byplay among the brothers made me laugh, while she cleverly depicted strong family bonds and love.
Profile Image for Barbara Tobey.
2,141 reviews40 followers
July 12, 2021
Gritty, fast-paced, gruesome occasionally and kept me turning the pages. I skipped over the intimate sex scenes and wished I could blot out the crude language. The raunchy banter between the police partners and the brothers did provide sophomoric comic relief to some horrendous situations. The author provided a copy for my voluntary review. I quickly discovered the story was harder edged than my typical reading material. Eased off of this type some years ago. I did have to read it to the end to find out who was the creepy psychopath. Surprised me! Exciting throughout!

2021 version Gritty, fast-paced and kept me turning the pages. I skipped over the intimate sex scenes. The banter between the police partners and the brothers did provide comic relief. I quickly discovered the story was harder edged than my typical reading material. Eased off of this type some years ago. I did have to read it to the end to find out who was the creepy psychopath. Surprised me! Exciting throughout! I read this book five years ago. The author has eliminated much of what I disliked at that time. I did not recall the story at all and enjoyed my second reading even more than the first.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Profile Image for Behind Closed Doors Book Review.
1,243 reviews142 followers
October 25, 2017
Amount of sex 2.5 / 5
How explicit 3 / 5
Story 4 / 5
Overall: 4 / 5

Digital Velocity is the first book in the McAllister Justice series by author Reily Garrett. I didn’t realize that this was not the first book in the series. Tender Echoes is the prequel to Digital Velocity and I highly recommend reading it before beginning.

I understood the story without reading Tender Echoes, but I was a bit confused about Lexi’s past. I wish I had read it beforehand as I assume it would answer my questions. Although, knowing her past is not vital to the story. So, I believe it’s a matter of preference. I think it would help me understand why Lexi covered her tracks so well and didn’t want to have a digital footprint. But, know it’s not necessary for the plot.

Digital Velocity’s storyline is suspenseful and I was hooked from the beginning. I loved the banter between all the McAllister brothers as well as Ethan and his partner Larrick.

Overall, a good suspenseful romance!

*Voluntarily reviewed a gifted copy*
Profile Image for Mel Allen.
1,064 reviews5 followers
October 7, 2017
Wow this book had me its a crime thriller that keeps you guessing about who it is. We meet PD Detective Ethan who along with his partner are on the trail of a killer that they find hard to get any evidence from the crime scenes until Ethan gets clues given to him by an anonymous source. Whilst at home recovering Ethan finally gets to meet his source Lexi. What starts out as her helping turns into some much more.
Lexi has always been alone and has built up walls to keep herself protected, but helping Ethan and spending time with thin is slowly breaking them one by one. When Lexi ends up on the killers list Ethan does his best to protect her.
Will they find who the killer is? What will happen with the feels that Ethan and Lexi have for each other. This thriller is a sit in the edge of your seat and has you trying to think who it is , it's a well written story that I absolutely loved.
Profile Image for Romaine Heart.
2,117 reviews20 followers
May 6, 2017
Lexi Donovan is a strong, independent computer whiz, yet lonely and guarded with trust issues, unless it's dogs or her computer.
Detective Ethan McAllister and the McAllister brothers are law enforcement officers in different departments. Alpha and protective. Loved the bamter between the brothers.
Ethan has been receiving anonymous tips helping him solve crimes. Now his sights are set on a serial killer that could cost him and others their lives.
Digital Velocity kept me on the edge of my seat with its intrigue suspense and drama.
Reilly Garrett will not disappoint you with her writings. I would definitely recommend her books Digital Velocity and Carnal Obsession.
Murder, suspense, drama, love.
I'm volunteering an honest review for an advance reader's copy.
Profile Image for Melissa Killingbeck.
162 reviews2 followers
February 6, 2018
Digital Velocity is a romantic suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Lexi Donovan is a computer hacker trying to anonymously help police detective Ethan McAllister solve a string of murders. When Ethan ends up injured due to one of her anonymous tips she decides it's time to come out from behind the computer screen. As the two work together to solve the murders romantic feelings start to grow and Lexi inadvertently puts her life in danger. With the help of his partner and brothers will Ethan be able to keep Lexi out of harms way ? Digital Velocity has suspense, intrigue, mystery, twists, romance, and action. I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
367 reviews13 followers
August 22, 2017
Lexi is a computer prodigy and part-time hacker who uses her skills to help the police, especially homicide detective Ethan McAllister. Becoming his confidential informant, they’ll work together to catch a killer on the loose.
I only made it up to 32% of this book. I had read the prequel and was highly interested in reading more about Lexi, Ethan and their crime solving relationship, but the book was overtly detailed which I found tedious and boring.
I honestly think the story had great potential had it been approached in a different way, but I just couldn’t go through with it.

*An ARC was provided in exchange for an honest review*
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