Samantha Parker, a chemistry teacher, and Ethan McClane, a therapist, are attracted to one another right away, but they're both harboring deeply buried secrets. Circumstance has found both of them back in small, rural Hidden Falls, but is it fate that brought them together?
Initially, Ethan assumes that Sam's distance is because of past encounters with therapists, but he learns that her issues with relationships go much deeper than that. Sam has returned to her hometown to sell her late mother's house. No easy task since her mom's hoarder tendencies caused the place to fall into disarray. Realizing that she'd be there for a while, Sam takes a job at the local school, and that's where she meets Ethan. A reformed juvenile delinquent himself, Ethan has been hired to work with Thomas Adler, a bright but troubled kid wrestling with his own problems. Ethan and Sam meet, and sparks fly. After a few rocky starts, Ethan finally begins breaking down Sam's walls enough for her to let him in when they're interrupted in the middle of a steamy forest make-out session by Sam's dog, who's found a human skull. Now they're forced to deal with their pasts: Sam with the murder of her brother and Ethan with the crime that landed him in a detention center. The rest of the town can't help but wonder if the body belongs to a high school student who disappeared 18 years ago.
Solid romantic suspense by a writer talented enough at weaving a yarn to get her readers ensnared in it.