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The Unexpected Hostage

In your darkest hour, what will you risk to survive?

Nothing in her life has been stable since Tess’s beloved fiancé Kyle died in a tragic accident. She’s spent the past year hell-bent on outrunning her grief, jetting between high-stakes meetings and the rock clubs where she can disappear. Avoiding her pain was working—almost—until she and her colleagues are taken hostage by a violent Eastern European terrorist group.

With no means to escape her captors, Tess and fellow captive Mark must rely on one another to survive. Together, they’ll risk their lives and endure a brutal journey toward freedom as they forge a bond that neither can forget.

The mysteries of the past refuse to lay dormant for long as Tess is thrust into the center of another international cybercrime and uncovers the shocking truth about Kyle’s death. This time, she’ll need Mark’s help to avenge her losses as she races across the globe to save her company…and their lives.


Critical Acclaim

Riveting adventure and romance power this forceful first novel . . . In her debut novel, the author writes with a sure touch, creating thrill-a-minute adventure scenes while also excelling at the tender, romantic moments. The plot is intricate without being convoluted, and the characters, especially Tess and Mark, are layered and memorable.

— Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

With vivid international backdrops and a survival story pulsing with compelling mystery, McKenzie’s debut novel grabs from the start and never lets go . . . A tight, urgent plot and convincing, well-written characters are the foundation for this powerhouse thriller, which is powered by strong tension, crisp bursts of action, relatable feeling, and a welcome touch of romance.

— BookLife by Publishers Weekly (Editor’s Pick, August 22, 2023)

What better way to kick off your writing career than with a story that ticks all the boxes when it comes to compelling, realistic characters involved in current concerns like nefarious hacking and terrorism . . . Let The Unexpected Hostage capture you. It will hold you a willing hostage to the very last page.

— Viga Boland, Readers’ Favorite (5-star review)