A successful businessman uncovers dangerous family secrets and a long-lost love in this latest novel from Andre (Locked, Loaded, & Lying, 2015).
Devon Ashby grows up in Chicago, the eldest son of a prominent but emotionally distant businessman, Harrison Wickham. When Devon is 9, he discovers the body of his mother. Her death is ruled a suicide, but he’s convinced she was murdered. Determined to establish his own identity, he leaves home at 18 with $53 and bus tickets for himself and his high school sweetheart, Hannah Moore. Their intense relationship is the lifeline both need to cope with difficult families. He is devastated when Hannah chooses to stay to care for her dying mother. Twelve years later, Devon returns to make peace with Harrison and collect his trust fund. He discovers a family in shambles and the estate damaged by a mysterious fire. He’s shocked to discover Hannah’s company has been hired to restore the Wickham art collection. Their reunion sparks a long, simmering attraction that’s complicated by his company’s plans to tear down her apartment building. But when a second death occurs in the Wickham family home, Devon must face the ghosts of the past to protect himself and Hannah. Andre’s novel offers appealing lead characters and tightly plotted romantic suspense. Tall, dark, and devastatingly handsome, Devon could easily turn into a caricature of his ruthless and calculating father; however, carefully integrated flashbacks reveal the pain and heartbreak that drive his motivation to succeed in business and life. He meets his match in Hannah, a young woman with an equally tragic family background determined to build her own business and care for her elderly aunt. Their renewed attraction is instant but fraught with complications, including his development plan for Hannah’s neighborhood and engagement to another woman. Although their romance forms the cornerstone of Andre’s narrative, additional storylines involving the fire at the Wickham estate and Harrison’s sudden engagement to a mysterious woman are also well-developed despite a climax that’s slightly over the top.
Solid romantic suspense with strong characters and surprising plot twists.