French does an excellent job of creating a beautiful but ominous sense of atmosphere and place. A drive for answers propels this dark tale of murder and madness, and although the romance is muted, the suspense is intense. French is turning out to be a real gift to the suspense genre.

Talk about entering an alien and unfriendly world. French's heroine has her work cut out for her. An unexpected inheritance from a biological aunt starts Bailey Elliot down a surprisingly dangerous path. Wanting to learn about her birth parents, she travels to Tawes Island to inspect her new property and find some answers.

There, Bailey discovers she's far from welcome. Although her attempts to get answers are largely unsuccessful, she remains determined. Former CIA agent Daniel Catlin, meanwhile, is torn between his attraction to Bailey and the need to drive her off the island before something terrible happens. Dark deeds and brutal murder have occurred there in the past, and Bailey's mere presence has stirred the sinister hatred of a killer. (LOVE SPELL, Sep., 356 pp., $6.99)
Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith