Novak begins her new trilogy with a clever, impeccably plotted thriller. All of the characters are fully realized, but the gem is the villain, a monster who could easily walk among us.
Four years ago, Skye Kellerman's life changed in a heartbeat when she was attacked in her bed. Since then, she's become a victims' advocate. Then detective David Willis informs her that her assailant, Oliver Burke, is being paroled. Since Skye was the only one of his victims to survive and testify, Burke's carrying a grudge. There's little David can do officially, because no charges were ever made in the other cases. Unofficially is another matter. Thrown together, they must deal with their long-standing attraction, something that's as difficult as keeping one step ahead of Burke. (MIRA, Jun., 448 pp., $6.99)