Johansen dumps a host of bad guys on the trail of an animal psychic in her latest action-packed damsel-in-distress outing.
Margaret Douglas mentally communicates with animals, a trait that comes in very handy while helping a tiger accept the cub she has rejected. But a phone call from her friend Dr. Devon Brady from the Caribbean island where Margaret used to work sends her frantically packing her bags and going on the run—again. Margaret, who ran away from home at age 8 to live in the woods, later escaped from Vadaz Island, the home of the evil Stan Nicos, a criminal who enjoys having sex with young girls as well as torturing them. Margaret vowed never to return to Vadaz Island, and she's been hiding out from Nicos, trying to keep her location secret, but Devon tells her that a man named John Lassiter and his companion, Neal Cambry, are on her trail. It turns out Lassiter is planning to trade her to Nicos in return for something Nicos has of his. Like most of Johansen’s novels, this one features a strong, capable woman. Margaret initially fights Lassiter and Cambry. But also as in most of Johansen’s novels, while it may feel like the book is moving fast, what the characters do most is talk—about what they’ve done, what they’re doing, and what they’re going to do. There is so much conversation between Lassiter and Margaret that many of the chapters read like plays. Johansen (Night Watch, 2016, etc.) has perfected a formula her readers adore by taking a beautiful woman with extraordinary abilities, putting her in danger, and tossing in a gorgeous, smitten man, which is certainly the case here. And while the sexual tension between Margaret and Lassiter may make a few hearts flutter, the best character in the book by far is a beautiful, pregnant dog.
The author’s told this story many times before, but it never gets old to her many devotees.