Returning to the U.S. after an overseas magazine assignment, Leah comes across two cryptic letters from a Raymond Lambert in her mail. Seven years ago, Leahs younger sister Melissa vanished. Leah has offered a large reward for information on Missys whereabouts.

The letters claim to know what happened to Melissa. The terrifying thing is that Lambert is a convicted serial killer on death row. Leahs meeting with him reveals a chilling fact: Ray knew that Melissa had one blue and one brown eye and wore colored contacts to hide this fact. Ray refuses to divulge what happened to Melissa unless he is paid the reward money. Before Leah can comply, Ray is killed by a fellow inmate.

Leahs only option seems to be to find out Rays whereabouts when her sister disappeared. Ethan Sanger, who wrote a book on the killer, may be able to help. But neither Leah nor Ethan realize that Raymonds evil did not die with him.

This time around, Mariah Stewart shifts her exceptional talent in the direction of romantic suspense. And as BROWN-EYED GIRL demonstrates, it was a good decision. This new book deftly combines the tingling excitement of a thriller with the passion of a true romance.(Apr., 432 pp., $6.50)

Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith