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Keep You Close

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  172 ratings  ·  123 reviews
An FBI official's sense of right and wrong is blurred when her own son is accused of the unimaginable in this heart-pounding thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of Need to Know.

Stephanie Maddox makes tough decisions every day. She has her hands full heading the FBI's Internal Investigations division, policing wrongdoers within the Bureau. But, as a single m
Paperback, 352 pages
Expected publication: May 28th 2019 by Doubleday Canada
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  • Keep You Close by Karen Cleveland
    Keep You Close
    Release date: May 28, 2019
    Enter for a chance to win a hardcover of KEEP YOU CLOSE by Karen Cleveland, the New York Times bestselling author of NEED TO KNOW.

    She knows her teenag

    Format: Print book

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    Availability: 100 copies available, 3206 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: May 13 - Jun 03, 2019

    Countries available: U.S.

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    3.60  · 
    Rating details
     ·  172 ratings  ·  123 reviews

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    Susanne  Strong
    Apr 30, 2019 rated it liked it
    Shelves: buddy-read, netgalley
    3.5 Stars* (rounded down)

    A Fast Moving Mystery / Suspense!

    FBI Agent Steph Maddox hears a knock at the door. Another agent appears. He accuses her son Zachary of being a part a domestic terrorist group. Her first reaction is that he is being framed. Of course, everyone always say that, she would know - after all, she works in Internal Affairs.

    Forget the fact that moments earlier, Steph found a loaded gun hidden in Zachary’s closet in a nondescript paper bag. Even though they pass like ships in t
    Holly  B
    3.5 Stars

    Karen Cleveland's 2018 debut, Need To Know was one of my top reads last year and I was eager to read her second book.

    The fast pace/action and suspense are back, but I felt the story lacked the character development and intrigue and overall "cleverness" that was created in her debut.

    FBI Agent Stephanie Maddox is at the heart of the story as she tries to unravel a domestic anarchist groups involvement in a web of lies that could hurt her son, Zachary. She struggles to search for the trut
    Apr 26, 2019 rated it liked it
    Shelves: netgalley

    Karen Cleveland likes to tackle ethical dilemmas and how much you really know about the ones you love. Stephanie Maddox is the FBI agent in charge of Internal Investigations, so needless to say she has a strong sense of right and wrong. Which makes it even worse when she discovers a loaded gun in her teenage son’s room. I mean, anyone who’s raised teenagers knows they grow distant and moody, they stop communicating. But a gun? That’s way outside the norm.

    We’re quickly given glimpses of Stephani
    Apr 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
    I received a free e-copy of Keep You Close by Karen Cleveland from NetGalley for my honest review.

    FBI agent, Stephanie Maddox, is a single mother of Zachary, her teenage son. One day, while cleaning her son's room, she finds a loaded gun. Another agent show up and Zachary is soon being accused of being associated with a terrorist group. A terrorist group that is planning mass attacks.

    Does Stephanie really know her son? Is she being blinded by being his mother? She now has to decide whether she
    Apr 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Karen Cleveland likes to tackle ethical dilemmas and how much you really know about the ones you love. Stephanie Maddox is the FBI agent in charge of Internal Investigations, so needless to say she has a strong sense of right and wrong. Which makes it even worse when she discovers a loaded gun in her teenage son’s room. I mean, anyone who’s raised teenagers knows they grow distant and moody, they stop communicating. But a gun? That’s way outside the norm.

    We’re quickly given glimpses of Stephani
    Jessica Sullivan
    In this propulsive thriller, FBI agent Steph Maddox must untangle a web of deceit when her 17-year-old son is accused of plotting to murder government officials.

    Steph's determination to protect her son at all costs takes her deep into a conspiracy much more nefarious than she ever could have imagined, making her ultimately choose between her duty to her country or her duty to her son.

    It's a fine premise, but it doesn't break any new ground and the writing leaves a lot to be desired. Thrillers ar
    May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Karen Cleveland has done it again! Last year, I was blown away by Need to Know and had been eagerly anticipating what she would write next. When I heard it was not a sequel, I was disappointed as NTK ended on a giant OMG moment - I was thrilled to see plot points from Need to Know addressed in Keep You Close! You do not need to have read Need to Know first but if you have, I think it will really add to the story!

    How far will you go to protect your son is the question our heroine, FBI agent Step
    Stephanie (Stephanie's Novel Fiction)
    I love a good spy adventure/political thriller and after hearing such fabulous things about Karen Cleveland's first novel, Need to Know, I knew I had to read Keep You Close. It definitely delivers the high paced action, suspense, and espionage you expect when reading a book about FBI agents, anarchist groups, and Russian spies who are deeply embroiled in the highest levels of the US government!

    Agent Stephanie Maddox has always put her career at the FBI first and she's now head of Internal Affair
    Debi Hawkes
    Jan 31, 2019 rated it liked it
    I confess I haven't read anything by this author before, so nothing to compare it to like other reviewers who feel this one doesn't live up to her previous book.

    I must say as far as a thriller, it got me didn't see this one coming. So that's a plus. The characters though were a bit one dimensional, and was a bit hard to believe in some of the twists.

    All in all, a decent read.

    I received an ARC from NetGalley and publisher Ballantine Books
    Apr 27, 2019 rated it did not like it
    dnf @ page 100 - i can't connect with anything, everything seems far fetched and the main character doesn't seem like a very good agent
    idk this is stupid
    Feb 14, 2019 rated it it was ok
    It is not a good sign if it takes me ten days to read a “thriller”. Needless to say, I am not thrilled with this second effort by Karen Cleveland . In comparison to her debut, NEED TO KNOW, this book is a polar opposite, as reflected in my ratings of the two novels.

    KEEP YOU CLOSE has an intriguing story arc but it fell flat, in large part because the characters are flat. One dimensional characters and their stilted dialogue become dull. Incessant and redundant internal dialogue of the narrator n
    May 09, 2019 marked it as review-copies-to-read  ·  review of another edition

    Many thanks to Ballantine Books for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review

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    Bent Hansen
    Mar 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: arc, netgalley
    I loved Karen Cleveland's Need to Know and was excited to see that she already had a follow-up ready. The two books are unrelated, but a few elements from the first book are mentioned in passing in this book.
    Once again, Cleveland's protagonist is a cool female employed in the intelligence/law enforcement community and faced by villains in high places and dilemmas with life-changing consequences.
    The plot is exciting and I was hooked from page 1 and didn't lose interest throughout the story. Cleve
    Donna Hines
    Feb 06, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: arc
    As a single mother there is nothing more frightening that learning that your own child may be suffering in silence.
    When Steph uncovers a loaded gun in Zach's room it sets off a firestorm of questions and accusations.
    Is he a terrorist? Is he part of an underground gang? Are drugs involved?
    Who is Zach really under it all?
    Now those ideas swirl upon her as there's a knock at the door and her heart sinks to learn it's all about Zach....
    Terror is this novel's middle name.
    Thank you to Karen, the
    Feb 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I really liked this book as it has many elements I enjoy: political intrigue, scandals, FBI involvement, as well as a personal story about a mother and son that threatens to unravel with the deceit that plays out. Steph is an FBI agent who inadvertently discovers a loaded gun hidden in her seventeen-year-old son's bedroom. Moments later, another agent appears at her door accusing him of seeking out a radical group that is anti-government and is apparently planning mass attacks. Stunned, Steph mu ...more
    May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
    I really enjoyed this book, except for the fact that I feel like there was no real resolution at the end of it. I feel like usually in a series, there is something that reaches a comfortable ending point even if its clear that there will be another book to follow. I feel kind of like this ended abruptly in the middle of the wrap up, which was sort of disappointing. Other than that, this book kept me riveted and kept me trying to figure out what was going on the whole time. I also enjoyed that th ...more
    Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    I was a huge fan of Need to Know so I was so excited to read this book and maybe my expectations were too high but it fell flat for me. It seemed very repetitive and parts were very predictable. There seemed to be endless half-finished conversations between Stephanie and Zachary. I wanted them to just set aside 5 minutes to have one real, honest conversation that would save them hours if future confusion and they didn’t.
    Kelly Hill
    Jan 23, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
    I absolutely loved the author’s first book and could not wait for this to be released. It fell really flat though. The book was written in the same fast paced, dialogue driven style as her first however there was no character development at all and I kept having to look back to see who certain characters were. The narrator’s internal monologue was super repetitive . And the plot was super unbelievable. Steph’s discovery of what was in her son’s room and her actions following (including leaving h ...more
    May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    How far would you go to protect your teenage child? So far that you are willing to bend or break legal boundaries and those you’ve vowed to uphold in your career at the FBI?

    These are just a few of the moral dilemmas that Stephanie Maddox, veteran FBI agent and single mother of 17-year-old Zachary, is forced to face in Karen Cleveland’s sophomore thriller, Keep You Close.

    The twist and turns abound in this novel, always something new and threatening around every corner. And at every turn, you ar
    Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
    Karen Cleveland came on my radar early last year when I read and loved her debut novel, Need To Know. This time, the former CIA analyst-turned-author brings readers into the lives of FBI agent Steph Maddox and her teenage son Zachary as they try to figure out who is trying to frame Zachary for a terrorist act.

    It's an interesting premise that starts off strong with short chapters and a good pace. There's a lot going on with some good twists but unfortunately, it soon has a muddled feel with chopp
    Stephanie Maddox has dedicated her FBI career to taking down the bad guys. She has sacrificed her personal life, time and again missing milestones in her son Zachary’s life. As a single parent she relied on her mother and babysitters to take over for her. All in the name of the “greater good”.

    Zachary is a great high school student and has excelled in all areas at school. He’s in the Computer Programming Club, an Honor Society Member, part of the student government, and works a part-time job writ
    Apr 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Back in 2017, I gave four stars to Karen Cleveland’s Need To Know, a thriller featuring a strong female protagonist. Happily, thanks to Random House-Ballantine and NetGalley, I was given the opportunity to read an advance copy of Ms. Cleveland’s next book, Keep You Close, in exchange for my honest review.

    Once again, we have a strong female protagonist, this time a single parent named Steph whose long days (and nights) on the job as an FBI agent have made her focus more on her work than on her so
    Apr 22, 2019 rated it liked it
    This was interesting, but the plot became way too convoluted for me. Our heroine is a single parent who is an FBI Internal Affairs Chief. Her background story is that when she was interning at Congress, she was raped by her boss, a US Senator. She left his service that night and ultimately realized she was pregnant and decided to keep the child, Zachary, who is now a senior in high school. Steph, our heroine, has reason to suspect that someone is setting up her son as a terrorist and she is para ...more
    Apr 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Keep You Close
    Karen Cleveland

    What it's all about...

    Why is there a gun in her son’s closet? Finding this gun and other incriminating things on the internet causes Special Agent Stephanie Maddox to question her teenage son Zachary about the choices he has been recently making. However he swears he is innocent! The lies begin!

    My thoughts after reading this book...

    Unfortunately Agent Maddox works a lot. She has sacrificed time with her son in order to establish her career. However she has a reaso
    Mar 26, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
    Can’t wait to read this one! Thank you at Goodreads for giveaway win.
    RTC 🤤

    Thank you to Ballantine and Goodreads for the giveaway!
    May 02, 2019 rated it liked it
    Keep You Close, by Karen Cleveland

    Short Take: Ripped from the headlines! But in a not-fun way.

    (*Note: I received an advance copy of this book for review.*)

    This is where I usually put a witty intro, where I find some clever way to tie some aspect of my life to the book I’m reviewing, but I recently made the fateful decision to finally join the rest of the population of Earth and start watching Game of Thrones. Therefore, my time is limited at the moment. So let’s all just pretend that I wrote som
    Lou Jacobs
    Apr 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
    What's more important .... allegiance to your job and country or love for your son... such a dilemma faces FBI agent Steph Maddox. Steph has worked hard and endured multiple slights and pitfalls to rise in her position in the FBI. She is recently promoted to Head of Internal Investigations Section and her world is turned upside down when a colleague from the domestic terrorist section ( and previous boyfriend) indicated there is evidence that her son, Zachary, is involved in a shadowy network o ...more
    May 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: detective
    Steph is a woman who prides herself on doing the right thing. She raised her son to make solid choices, adhere to obligations, and be responsible. Steph’s ethics are tested when she uncovers some suspicious activity by her son. The agent in her knows she should report it, but the mother in her believes her son doesn’t know about these situations. Going up against powerful political and government figures alone is difficult so she tries to convince others to come forward with her.

    A battle betwee
    Jessica (BlogEared Books)
    Apr 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Karen Cleveland's first book- Need to Know was my favorite book of 2018. Keep you close should be in my top 5 of 2019-another great showing! I identified with this book on a few levels- I'm a single mom who will do anything for my children, and have had to fight to be taken serious in my career as well. And that is where the similarities end... Stephanie is on the fast track in the FBI after a daring and dangerous stint fighting against the mob in Chicago. When the mob turns and threatens her so ...more
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    Karen Cleveland spent eight years as a CIA analyst, the last six in counterterrorism. She has master’s degrees from Trinity College Dublin, where she studied as a Fulbright Scholar, and from Harvard University. She lives in northern Virginia with her husband and two young kids.
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