Live to tell
Bantam, Jul 13 2010, $26.00
She was nine tears old when Danielle Burton heard the shots that killed her mother and two siblings, and finally her father killed himself. Sheriff Warner took her from that house and over the years she became a children’s psychiatric nurse at Cambridge Hospital; home to children dangerous to others and themselves are housed. Danielle has no friends as work is her life.
Boston police detective D. D. Warren wishes she had a social life, but works always intercedes. On a date for the first time in forever, her beeper rings and she is called to Harrington House where a father killed his wife and their three children before committing suicide. The next day at the Laraquettee-Solis’s house, a drug selling father kills his lover and her for kids, and it looks like he took his own life. However he had a heart attack due to being tasered.. To Warren the crime scenes looks staged so she seeks a connection and finds one. Both families had children at the pediatric psych ward at Cambridge Hospital where Warren arrives to interrogate the staff, especially the survivor of a previous family massacre. At the same Victoria Oliver brings her troubled son Evan there.
Live to Tell is a heart pumping police procedural medical thriller that takes readers inside a facility where out of control dangerous children are sent for special treatment by dedicated mental health care professionals. Evan is a fascinating child who can be an angel one moment and a devil within a nanosecond. Readers will feel for his beleaguered mom who has doubts about filing him away but knows she cannot give him whatever he needs; it is difficult to decide to institutionalize your child. Fast-paced, readers will appreciate Warren’s dedicated and intense investigation while wondering whether the nurse lost it. However, it is the profound look into the children’s psychiatric ward that makes Lisa Gardner’s latest thriller a powerful drama. Harriet Klausner
The Panic Zone
Mira, Jul 2010, $9.99
After his serial killer reporting for the Buffalo Sentinel (see Vengeance Road), Melody Lyons hires Jack Gannon to work for The World Press Alliance. His peers at the Manhattan office feel strongly he is not their equal and needs to shuffle back to Buffalo. However, Melody believes they don’t know Jack. She sends him to Rio to determine whether a WPA journalist and photographer, who died in a bombing, were the intended victims and if so why.
In Big Cloud, Wyoming, Emma Lane survives a fiery car crash when she was thrown from the vehicle in which her spouse died and investigators assume their baby did too though she swears she saw her infant rescued; neither assertion re the child can be proven. On a Caribbean cruse, forty years old Roger Tippert dies horribly; the medical examiner is unable to find the cause so forwards the findings to the CDC. As Jack works the Brazilian case, he rules out a drug gang as the police and the fuming local WPA insist and seeks nebulous ties to the Caribbean and Wyoming incidents that places him in trouble with a dangerous person; making him wonder if his colleagues are right about a shuffle to Buffalo.
This action-packed international thriller hooks the reader from the opening gamut untiol the final confrntation. The story line is fast-paced while the audience wonnds what if anything connects the dots so seemingly apart. Jack is terrific as he tries to solve the case and prove his worthiness, but learns a valubale lesson about being alone as he investigates. As with his first thriller (see Vengeance Road), Jack’s second journalistic investigation is a an exciting novel. Harriet Klausner
The Wolf Next Door
Sourcebook, Jun 1 2010, $6.99
Prisca Hawthorne and William Westfield were in love and had planned to elope until she heard he sired a child with someone else. She rejected him and he turned elsewhere for his satisfaction. Over the next few years even though she knows he never fathered that child, they remain estranged though they are still attracted to one another and unable to avoid each other as their family circles intertwine.
In 1816, her four younger brothers decide they need to stop their meddling sister from intruding on their lives. They believe William is perfect to marry their sister as he is the only person they know who might be able to control their “Prissy”. None of the Hawthorne siblings are aware that a wolf that visits Prisca is actually love struck William, who like his brothers is a Lycan (werewolf being a derogatory term). William becomes concerned when a rogue Lycan starts sniffing at his soulmate. He begins a desperate counter ploy to keep his beloved safe, but fears what will happen when she learns the truth about what he did, what he is, and how much he loves her.
The third Westfield wolfish paranormal Regency romance is more of a family affair than its predecessors as the stars of Tall, Dark and Wolfish and A Certain Wolfish Charm join in the fun of as the back cover states “moon-crossed” lovers. Readers will enjoy William’s Hail Mary though he should have heeded his brother’s advice by telling Prisca he loves her. Instead he complicates their relationship with a convoluted scheme that makes his telling the truth about Lycan and witches so much more complex. Lydia Dare provides a strong family affair. Harriet Klausner
The Darkly Luminous Fight For Persephone
Leanna Renee Hieber
Love Spell, May 2010, $6.99
Reckless nineteen year old Persephone “Percy” Parker of the Athens Academy mounts a desperate rescue attempt to save her fiancé, Professor Alexi Rychman and his six Guardian cronies from the assaults of the agents of Underword. However, by doing so, Percy may cause unintended consequences. Her internal magic has risen beyond the point of danger to herself and others.
The Whisper World faces chaotic destruction. Percy knows she must act, but is not sure what to do as war seems inevitable to London in the year of Our Lord 1888 and she has not begun obtaining her destiny as the seventh prophesized Guardian. However intrepid Percy and the Magic Guard who stand with her refuse to flee even if it costs them their lives.
The second Percy Parker Victorian romantic suspense fantasy is an entertaining tale filled with ghosts, Guardians and an incredibly eerie Victorian landscape. The story line is fast-paced from the onset and never stops except for a touch of tea. Although it helps to have read (see The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker to know how far the heroine has come of age and how much further she must go, fans will relish the charming yet exhilarating Persephone saga. Harriet Klausner