Daughter of a controlling mother, Elizabeth finally let loose one night, drinking at a nightclub and allowing a strange man’s seductive Russian accent lure her to a house on Lake Shore Drive. The events that followed changed her life forever.
Twelve years later, the woman known as Abigail Lowery lives on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozarks. A freelance programmer, she designs sophisticated security systems — and supplements her own security with a fierce dog and an assortment of firearms. She keeps to herself, saying little, revealing nothing. But Abigail’s reserve only intrigues police chief Brooks Gleason. Her logical mind, her secretive nature, and her unromantic viewpoints leave him fascinated but frustrated. He suspects that Abigail needs protection from something — and that her elaborate defenses hide a story that must be revealed.
With a quirky, unforgettable heroine and a pulse-pounding plotline, Nora Roberts presents a riveting new read that cements her place as today’s most reliably entertaining thriller — and will leave people hungering for more.
I’m incredibly torn over how to rate this book, so I’m going with 3.5 stars, rounded down.
I think this is probably one of my favourite Nora Roberts novels. It’s not a particularly unique plot or protagonist or love interest, but putting it all together in the way only she can, damn I was hooked.
Elizabeth is smart and capable and an excellent protagonist. I enjoyed reading about her coming alive at 16 as she gets ready to go out with her new friend. And then again, 12 years later, as Brooks works at opening her up and she comes alive again. It’s slow and believable and it takes effort from both of them. She’s incredibly literal and has all the markers of someone who’s grown up alone and smarter than everyone else around her. This does grind on the nerves a little bit but I found it excusable as at least she’s consistent.
Brooks is a little too perfect, though. He’s always doing exactly what Elizabeth needs him to be doing – whether that’s being pushy or giving her a break or making her face her own feelings. He knows when to give her space and when not to. And it’s the same with his job – he knows exactly how to play every situation that arises. Never loses his cool, does everything perfectly.
He’s also totally happy to sit back and let Elizabeth take the lead, even though everything leading up to that point suggests that he would not be comfortable letting Liz enter his world and take the lead when there’s so much at stake. Add on the happy ending which, after 12 years of running and hiding, suddenly wrapped up awfully quickly with no errors or missteps, and unfortunately it just doesn’t ring true. This is why I struggled to rate this book.
100% enjoyed this book and stayed up way too late because I couldn’t put it down. Only a few detractors kept me from rating higher but I would definitely recommend it to fans of Nora Roberts, of strong female protagonists, and of a little Russian mob/police drama with a lot of romance.