by Nancy Marie

May 2002
ISBN: 1-58851-620-2
Reviewer Graphic Button Publish America
Trade Paperback

After a particularly brutal beating by her husband, Paige Brookhart has finally gathered the courage to leave him. With her precious daughters Jess and Becky in tow, she sets out for her parents' home in Nebraska. As she nears Cheyenne Wyoming, her van begins to shimmy and shake and is impossible to steer. Paige pulls to the side of the road exhausted and unsure of what to do now.

Lance Parrish is driving by on his way home and stope to help. Paige explains the van's symptoms and Lance tells her that its probably her bearings or UV joints and will cost perhaps $300.00 or so to fix. Paige explains that she doesn't have that kind of money. Lance notices her battered face and asks what happened. Paige explains she is leaving her abusive husband. Lance offers to let her and the girls stay at his place until she can contact her parents for further help. Having no other options, Paige accepts and they head for Lance's ranch. He will arrange to have her car towed into town soon Lance assures her.

Meanwhile back at home, Justin, Paige's abusive husband is livid that she has taken his girls and left him. She will pay for this he vows. He will track her down and she will pay dearly for thinking she can leave him.

While I applaude Ms Marie for tackeling such a strong issue as spousel abuse in this book, I have reservations about reccomending it to everyone. The book is very well written. So well in fact that I think the subject matter will be very disturbing to those women who may have first hand knowledge of this type of abuse.

Justin, the abusive husband, seemed so real and believable that at times he scared me. Ms Marie pulls no punches with this character as she gives the reader an unobstructed view of just how far some men take the abuse they inflict on those they supposedly love. Justin is obsessive about making Paige pay for what he sees as wronging him and he will stop at nothing to get what he wants as far as revenge goes.

In Lance, Ms Marie shows the good side of mankind and how good a man can be as well. Lance has grown to love Paige and the girls and will stop at nothing to keep them safe from their abusive father. He will even risk his life if that's what's necessary.

Those of you who like romantic suspense and can stand the sometimes graphic actions of the abusive husband involved, should enjoy this book. If these type of story lines bother you as a reader, then I would say steer clear of this one but perhaps look for Ms Marie's next offering as she is a fine and talanted writer, and I think you would enjoy her future offerings.

Reviewed in June 2002 by Barbara.

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