by Nora Roberts

November 2005
ISBN: 0-515-13940-8
Reviewer Graphic Button Jove Books
Mass Market Paperback

Red Lily is the conclusion to Nora Robert’s impressive In the Garden trilogy. It picks up where Black Rose left off, with the various characters investigating the mysterious Harper Bride ghost. Readers eagerly awaiting the romance of Hayley Phillips and Harper Ashby must wait no further.

Hayley can’t believe the new feelings she has been having lately about Harper Ashby, Roz’s eldest son. He’s the man who held her hand when she gave birth to her daughter Lily; the man who has suddenly morphed into a total hottie. Though she’s nervous about pursuing a relationship with him, she can no longer stop her growing feelings for him.

Lucky for Hayley, Harper has been noticing her right back. Has noticed her in fact from the moment he laid eyes on her. He’s tried to keep his feelings in check when it seemed all she wanted from him was friendship, but now that she’s taken the initiative, he’s not about to hold anything back.

However, not everyone is happy about Hayley and Harper’s blossoming relationship. Amelia Connor, the infamous Harper Bride, is still around and causing more trouble than ever. As the feelings and emotions between Harper and Hayley grow, the violent and cruel acts of Amelia escalate. Soon, she’s infiltrating Hayley’s body, letting her story be told through Hayley. What will it take to drive Amelia out of Harper House for good? How can such an evil wrong finally be righted, more than a century after it was committed?

Red Lily is the spine chilling and eerie end to this trilogy, and wow, what a way to end! Roberts ratchets up the suspense, the ghostly acts, and the mystery surrounding Amelia tenfold, creating a fast paced and truly unnerving novel. All your questions will be answered as Roberts explores Amelia’s character in a way she hasn’t done in the previous two novels. Reading about Amelia’s possession of Hayley’s body is incredibly creepy, while at the same time, sad and pitiful. This is one ghost who has some story to tell.

Added to the ghost story is the realistic and heartwarming romance of Hayley and Harper. Their love story is truly the dénouement to this trilogy, leaving the reader with a happy and satisfied smile by the very end. You’ll laugh, cry, and be spooked at all the small, but important touches Roberts incorporates into this story. An enjoyable mix of the creepy and the downright romantic combine to make Red Lily a pleasurable and fulfilling read.

Reviewed in December 2005 by Sarah.

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