New from Simon & Schuster

Discretion

Discretion

A Novel

  • reading group guide
  • customer reviews
For fans of Lisa Scottoline and Law and Order: SVU, former federal sex-crimes prosecutor Allison Leotta’s novel explores the intersection of sex and power as Anna Curtis investigates the murder of one of DC’s highest-paid escorts.

When a beautiful young woman plummets to her death from the balcony of the U.S. Capitol, Assistant U.S. Attorney Anna Curtis is summoned to the scene. The evidence points to a sexual assault and murder. The victim is one of the city’s highest-paid escorts. And the balcony belongs to Washington, D.C.’s sole representative to Congress, the most powerful figure in city politics.

The Congressman proclaims his innocence, but he’s in the middle of a tough primary fight, and the scandal could cost him the election. For Anna, the high-profile case is an opportunity. But as the political stakes rise, she realizes that a single mistake could end her career.

At the same time, her budding romance with Jack Bailey, the chief homicide prosecutor, is at a crossroads. Determined to gain respect in the office, Anna wants to keep their relationship under wraps. But the mounting pressure and media attention that come with the office’s most important case will inevitably expose their relationship—if it doesn’t destroy it first.

The investigation leads Anna to Discretion, a high-end escort service that caters to D.C.’s elite. But with each break in the case, the mystery deepens. And the further Anna ventures into D.C.’s red-light underworld, the larger the target on her own back.

From the secret social clubs where Washington’s most powerful men escape from public view to the asphalt “track” where the city’s most vulnerable women work the streets, Discretion is a gripping exploration of sex, power, and the secrets we all keep.
  • Touchstone | 
  • 336 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451644869 | 
  • July 2012
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Video

Allison Leotta on Her Latest Thriller: Discretion

From the “female John Grisham” (The Providence Journal), a new legal thriller exploring the intersection of sex and power in Washington, D.C.’s most secretive worlds.

Read an Excerpt

Discretion 1
Even now, Caroline got nervous before every big job—and this was bigger than most. She knew how to smile past smirking hotel concierges and apartment-building doormen who deliberately looked the other way. The key was looking confident. But committing a crime in the U.S. Capitol was a different experience altogether.

She tried to radiate authority as she strode up the marble steps to the Capitol’s Senate carriage entrance. It helped that she was dolled up like a successful K Street lobbyist: ivory... see more

Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Discretion includes an introduction, discussion questions, a Q&A with author Allison Leotta, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Introduction

A beautiful young woman falls to her death from the U.S. Capitol office of Congressman Emmett Lionel, a political powerhouse. Prosecutor Anna Curtis quickly learns that the woman is one of D.C.’s most desired—and high-priced—escorts. The revelation starts Anna down a shadowy road through the capital’s underworld, where sex and power intertwine. The timing couldn’t be worse for Lionel, tangled in an increasingly brutal primary fight. To the public, Lionel professes his innocence and vows to seek justice, but to the investigators, he obstructs every move.

Complicating matters is Anna’s secret romance with chief homicide prosecutor Jack Bailey, who leads the investigation.

The case leads Anna to Discretion, an escort service “for the man who can afford anything but publicity.” The agency is ruthlessly determined to protect its clients, and the clients have so much to lose—and so much power to wield—that Anna’s job and life are soon in grave danger. see more

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