King of Code by C.D. Reiss

Title: King of Code

Author: C.D. Reiss

Date of Publication: September 18, 2017

Synopsis

From New York Times Bestselling author, CD Reiss, comes a sexy tale of secrets, intrigue, betrayal, and a love worth crossing a continent for.

Taylor Harden is a man on the edge.
The edge of fame. The edge of untold wealth.
The edge of utter humiliation.
He built an unhackable system, and in front of everyone, it’s hacked.
His reputation goes from king to goat in a split second. Boom. Like that.
Some dude in Barrington, USA (AKA Nowhere) has locked down Taylor’s code, and if he doesn’t get it back, he’s going to be wearing a monkey suit for the rest of his life.
Except, this guy? This hacker from Nowhere? He’s not a guy.

Harper Watson’s all woman. And she has a plan for Taylor, his code, and his body.

Christina’s 5 Star Review

God it is so nice to not have a brainless, overly sexualized (oh, and don’t get me wrong, this book is hot!) heroine! She engages in a practice that is thought to be mainly exercised by men, as witnessed by some of the things that have happened both on and off Twitter by an outspoken woman who was doxxed by a group of angry men who took offense that she was a female gamer (and called them out on it). The involvement of women in the virtual world, especially when it comes to the deep web and hacking (kids, don’t try this at home) is largely unheard of, so this book was a welcome twist on your “average” romance.

Taylor Harden is your “King of Code”. He’s on the verge of becoming of a very rich man, for not only himself, but also his team that helped him develop an impenetrable operating system that cannot be hacked. Move over Gates, move over Cook, there’s a new man in town and he’s going to make your operating systems and your constant updates look like child’s play. But just days before its unveiling, the system is hacked, and what’s worse? It’s hacked by some dude out in BFE, US. So before they can roll it out, they need to find this guy and find out just what he’s looking for in return.

Harper Watson is easily the smartest person in BFE, US and everyone knows it. Her time and talent is wasted on trying to save her small town of Barrington, which, in her household, means selling plates that have been in her family for generations, or the furniture in the home. But believe it or not, Harper and her sister are still fairing better than many of the town’s residents that have leaned on them for help, especially when it comes to hot meals.

Harper has hacked the system of QI4, (the name of Taylor’s company) in hopes of extorting money out of someone, anyone, in order to save the town and perhaps get that company to start using the now-defunct bottling plant that could easily be converted into some kind of assembly plant for computers, or at least their parts. What Harper didn’t see coming was Taylor the start-up CEO, who had very different plans for her. .

The resulting story is a gripping page-turner that you’re not going to want to put down. Yeah, there are a quite a few of computer/hacker terms and use of l33t, but it’s nothing that is going to make it hard to read. While you might not expect a hacker/computer geek kind of story not to be hot, oh don’t you worry your little head. What would you expect from Reiss?!? I loved both of the characters (and the supporting cast) from page one. The beginning, set in San Jose, set off a very Silicon Valley (the show, you should watch it) vibe that was funny and kind of reminded me of the feeling you’d get in SJ (we lived in Monterey, SJ was kind of civilization). The story is told in the first person from Taylor’s point of view.

All in all I would definitely recommend it to all of the geek girls out there who read romance (raises hand) as well as fans of contemporary romance. There’s no lack of passion with a whole lot of humor thrown it. 

Excerpt

“About time!” the older lady shouted.
“Is Harper back?” I asked, handing the bags to the blushing redhead.

As if summoned, Harper came through the swinging door, keeping it open so everyone
could get past. She looked at me through the screen.
“You coming in?” she asked.
“We need to talk.”
“Did the decryption key work?”
The door slapped closed behind her as she came out, and we were alone. The way the
setting sun hit her cheeks made her glow, and the strands of gold hair at the edges
looked translucent. She belonged on a postcard.
I kept forgetting she was holding me hostage. I kept forgetting I needed to think
strategically. I had more at stake with this girl than I’d ever had with another.
“Did you doubt it would work?”
“Not really. I’m just making conversation.”
“What are the thorns about?” I pointed at the thorn bed that had eaten my phone and
went down the stairs to the yard.
She came after me. “Don’t you have these where you’re from?” She snapped a dry twig
off the end.
“Roses? Yes. Impenetrable, groomed thorn bushes in our yards? No.”
“It’s not normal to give the gardeners in town something to do?” We walked around the
perimeter.
“You are not normal.”
“It still blooms in spring. It’s really nice. You should see it.”
We were at the back end of the yard, where the very top of the factory’s roof cut the
horizon.
I took her hand, pulling her to a stop. “Harper.”
“Taylor?” Her hair flew in her mouth when she turned, and she drew her finger across
her cheek to get it out.
What was I supposed to tell her again? That I knew we’d interviewed her. That I didn’t
give her the job despite her having a leg up on everyone else we saw.
But was I contrite? Accusatory? Was I just going to relay information? What did I want
out of her after I told her I knew?
“Thank you for helping today,” she said. “If you’d asked me when we met, ‘Would Taylor
Harden help clean the factory?’ I would have said, ‘No, not for any reason.’ But there
you were. Pushing a broom. Scooping up shit. Not being an asshole.”
“My watch was at stake.”
“Yeah. Whatever. You can say what you want to keep your reputation as a shithead
intact.”
“I have a reputation as a shithead?”
“You know you do.”
I did know it, and I reveled in it.

She faced me and put her other hand out. I took it, holding both hands between us. I
couldn’t help it.
“Well, you guys are such a bunch of sad sacks I had to help. And let me tell you, every
guy in Barrington has a little asshole in him. Trust me. I’ve played pool with them.”
“I want to say…” She stopped herself as if she really didn’t want to say. “Let’s get
together tonight and get you another decryption code. But… saying this is stupid.” She
bit her lip.
“Say it anyway.”
“The sooner you get four codes, the sooner you leave.”
I looked at our hands so I wouldn’t have to look at her.
“I’m not sure if I want that,” she said.

About the Author

CD Reiss is a New York Times bestseller. She still has to chop wood and carry water, which was buried in the fine print. Her lawyer is working it out with God but in the meantime, if you call and she doesn’t pick up she’s at the well hauling buckets.

Born in New York City, she moved to Hollywood, California to get her master’s degree in screenwriting from USC. In case you want to know, that went nowhere but it did give her a big enough ego to write novels.

She’s frequently referred to as the Shakespeare of Smut which is flattering but hasn’t ever gotten her out of chopping that cord of wood.

If you meet her in person, you should call her Christine.

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