Series: Karen Rose's Interconnecting Books
Author: Karen Rose
Read copy: Mass Market Paperback
Published: June 1, 2010
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
When a teenage girl dies in a suspicious fire, Detective Olivia Sutherland is assigned to track down the arsonist. Then she discovers something more sinister: a vicious blackmailer who preys on young people and murders without hesitation. Making her work even harder is sexy firefighter David Hunter. He's not only sharing the case but sparking memories of their long-ago night of passion, when feelings were left unspoken and hearts were broken.
David has his own ghosts, and a million regrets. But while he and Olivia try to face the wall of pain between them, a diabolical puppet master is pulling strings to make a group of twentysomethings do his bidding. Soon Olivia and David are scouring the city for a calculating criminal who seems tantalizingly close--and is moving in for the kill.
Four college students start a fire in a condo under development, accidentally killing an innocent teenager. Now, not only are they victims of a serial blackmailer and guilty of arson (despite their motives being "good"), they also have the cops on their tails.
But as in all KR books, those cops are the least of the foursome problems, since they're forced to do the blackmailer's bidding, setting more fires, digging their holes deeper and deeper.
The random fires won't be random for long, though, not with the FD and Hat Squad working together. The two forces will quickly start looking for links, though there appear to be none, and despite the grave circumstances of their joint investigation, both departments just might create a new and strong link...If they all get out of it alive, that is.
This was yet another winner by the awesome writer that is Karen Rose. Equal parts thriller and romance with major angst, dark secrets, broken hearts, and drama thrown into the mix to create that elusive perfect blend of genres that distinguishes Ms. Rose's writing from the rest.
With wonderful characterization (as always), a twisted villain, touching romance, hot'n'steamy scenes, great mystery, chilling thrills, a hot firefighter, a determined lady detective, and a group of family and friends to provide some humor, this book is a great way to spend a few hours.
I loved both David (he finally moved on) and Olivia (she finally got her man) in this one, their shared past was wince-inducing (David, David, way to go, my man), and I absolutely adored the main villain (does that make me weird?), though at times I thought there were a bit too many twists and turns in the suspense plot. There were some pretty intense and heart-rendering scenes in this one (for both firefighters and cops), but they were nicely balanced out by the thrills, romance (sweeeet), and those little touches of humor David's tenant Glenn, Olivia's partner Kane, and Olivia and David's mutual friends provided.