Ever since she was a child Kate Corsi has dreamed of joining her fathers demolition company, Phoenix Demolitions (PDI). Unfortunately, her old-fashioned father Sam Corsi refused to let his daughter enter the dangerous profession. When Kate fell in love with Patrick Donovan, she never dreamed that he would become her fathers handyman. Kate and Donovans marriage was passionate, but 10 years ago events erupted which caused them to divorce. Kate moved away to join her brother in San Francisco.

A decade later Sam is killed in an explosion at one of PDIs job sites, and Kate is brought home to face numerous ghosts. It seems that even in death Sam is trying to force Kate and Donovan back together, for his will includes some highly unusual dictates. Sam has left Kate and her brother Tom provided for financially, but PDI is to be left to Donovan. However, everything hinges on the stipulation that Kate and Donovan stay in their old house together for the next year. At first Kate is mutinous, but eventually sees that this is her opportunity to join the family firm.

Donovan knows he made unforgivable mistakes, and through Sams will, he has the chance to heal old wounds and prove to Kate that he has learned from the past. Teaching Kate the demolition business is small compensation for the pain he inflicted. When it is revealed that Sams death was no accident, Kate and Donovan wonder if PDI and its employees have been targeted for some reason.

Powerhouse novelist Mary Jo Putney explodes on the contemporary scene with an emotionally wrenching and dramatically intense story. She tackles a very difficult subject with insight, and compassion. Exceptionally powerful reading! (May, 352 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith