|A bit of chilly suspense and sparkly romance in this quick read.|
Grand Central Publishing, November 2011
Review copy provided by the publisher via HNR, thank you!
Review originally posted in Historical Novels Review Magazine
Burton Book Review Rating:
America's Heartland, 1946. World War II has ended, and everyone is pursuing peacetime's bright promise with fresh energy and hope. Newly-arrived in a small Wisconsin town, Christina Tucker now dares to chase her long-cherished dreams: put her wartime nursing skills to use and reconnect with country life. But helping a shell-shocked veteran recover soon tests her determination and disturbs town memories best left buried. She has no choice but to turn to her patient's seemingly-irresponsible brother, Tyler Sutter. A restless ex-soldier, Tyler can't believe this pretty ladylike nurse can heal his family. Yet as Christina begins to understand Tyler's own fears, the two grow close, then closer still-as a terrible secret sparks one man's violent, vengeful spree. With both the guilty and innocent alike in harm's way, Tyler and Christina must face all their fears . . . or never live to see the future.
Author Dorothy Garlock is known for her novels set among America’s Heartland, just as this novel continues a series with the Tucker sisters (the previous novel focusing on Charlotte in Keep A Little Secret), this novel focuses on Christina Tucker. The set-up and plot are easy to follow as a stand-alone, as Garlock creates a new storyline following Christina’s path as a nurse in a new town.
Christina meets the nephews of her employer, and right away we know that there will be a love triangle that dominates the book. Tyler and Holden Sutter each take a liking to Christina and she has feelings for both of them for which she must deal with. Each of the boys has their own issues after returning from WWII, and Christina tries to help both without getting hurt in the emotional crossfire between the brothers. Instead of straight romance, though, there is a thriller side to it when Christina becomes subjected to the contemptible folks of her new town, as Christina becomes a prime target for revenge on those she becomes close to. The main characters could have used a bit more dimension and spark, although there was enough insanity amongst the two murderers in Christina’s midst. A quick and light read, there was a bit of predictability of the events but this is still good escapist fiction.