by Brooke Morgan
Barrett has not had the best of luck with men. Quiet, shy and serious,
she studied more than she flirted in school. Now a single mom
living in a small Cape Cod town with her beautiful young daughter Katy,
Holly leads an uneventful life until one morning bus ride when a
drop-dead gorgeous man sits next to her. Conversation leads to an
impromptu side trip. Although their first unplanned date ends
with a boom, the mysterious Englishman Jack Dane later sweeps her off
her feet in a whirlwind. Even her family cannot resist his
charm. As Holly seeks to carve out a new life for herself and her
daughter, disturbances interrupt the potential picture of wedded
bliss. After abandoning Holly when she most needed him years ago,
Katy's biological father re-enters the scene, causing friction to the
newly formed family. Jack's parenting skills are awkward and
clumsy at best. Despite these troubles, Holly truly shines with a
new confidence now and her family seems whole. Are these bumps in
the road just a normal process of bringing together a family or are
they a sign of deeper trouble to come? Is Jack the wonderful man
he appears? Does his unknown past hide a deep dark secret?
Has Holly made a marriage in heaven or has she just given a dangerous
man access to her family? How far will she go to protect those
Brooke Morgan's debut novel TAINTED
is one amazing work of psychological suspense! Written in an easy
to read beautiful prose style, TAINTED
turns romantic fantasy into a shattering nightmare that sends chills
through the spine. One can't help but fall for the
characters. Holly could be any woman. The questions she
asks are questions anyone would ask. Her hopes are our
hopes. The scenes with her extended family warm the heart and her
daughter Katy's innocence is the reader's innocence --- and yet through
the author's clever use of perspective change, the reader sees the
subtle warnings, the slight disjunctures that hint at trouble on the
horizon. Skillful, emotional twists keep a reader glued to the
pages but nothing can prepare a reader for the shocking truth as it
unravels. Scene by scene, Brooke Morgan takes the reader on a
wild journey of hope and fear as hints of Jack's mysterious past
encroach upon the lives around her. What a perfect ending!
Brooke Morgan knows how to deliver the final masterstroke that leaves a
suspense lover delightfully stunned!
On each and every page, TAINTED is psychological suspense at its
best. Rather than relying on gratuitous gore or horror for shock
value, Brooke Morgan builds the suspense by delving into her
characters' deepest dreams and fears. Each twist and turn, each
change in point of view is expertly handled for maximum effect.
Brooke Morgan reveals just enough to keep a reader on the the edge, but
never too much or too early. TAINTED haunts the imagination long
after the final word.
Brooke Morgan's TAINTED would
make an excellent choice for stimulating book club discussions.
The figure of Jack's present and past and more importantly the author's
expert handling of all the questions and characters surrounding him
pose fascinating questions while leaving readers room for reflection
and animated discussion.
Publisher: Avon A (December 1, 2009)