In the face of disaster, photojournalist Alex Graham finds it nearly impossible to be an uninvolved observer as her job requires. The terrible dam collapse at Arapaho Junction, Colorado, proves the point. Instead of documenting the event, Alex is down searching for survivors. And when she accidentally stumbles across some men discussing the event she is horrified to learn it may not have been an accident.

It quickly becomes apparent that someone fears Alex knows too much. An attempt is made on her life, and when Alex's friend Sarah, wife of billionaire John Logan, is also nearly killed, John decides to enlist some protection. Through his connections, John arranges for shadowy assassin Judd Morgan to protect Alex.

Alex wants nothing to do with Morgan or the protection he offers, but when news reports suddenly claim Alex is working for a terrorist organization and is responsible for the dam collapse, she knows the conspiracy goes deep into the government.

Morgan has his own problems with the government, who want his head on a platter. Knowing how it feels to have been set up, he has an uneasy feeling that there could be a connection between his problems and Alex's—but staying alive long enough to prove it could be challenging.

Using characters from many of her previous books, Johansen adds continuity and flavor to this gripping novel. Riveting and intense, it shows how the quest for power corrupts so easily and can lead to deadly consequences—where no one is above suspicion. (Apr., 327 pp., $24.95)

Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith