Sunday, February 03, 2013

Spotlight Review:

THE TRUTH ABOUT COMFORT COVE – Tara Taylor Quinn
Comfort Cove Trilogy, Book 3
Harlequin Superromance
ISBN-13: 978-0-373-71829-0
January 2013
Contemporary Romance

Comfort Cove, Massachusetts and Aurora, Indiana – Present day

Lucy Hayes is a cold case detective in Aurora, Indiana. Probably the reason she has this particular job is due to her growing up as an only child of a woman whose first daughter, Allison, was kidnapped when she was barely two years old. Sandy Hayes was abducted from a grocery store parking lot, taken to an out of the way area and raped, then left for dead. The perpetrator took her daughter Allison. Now, Sandy is an alcoholic who's half crazy with anxiety and worry about the child she lost. Lucy is currently helping with the prosecution of her rapist, whom they finally caught after all these years. She just has to get Sandy sane enough to testify against him in court. Lucy wants to also charge him with kidnapping and, somehow, get him to tell her where her sister is.

Across the county in Comfort Cove, Massachusetts, cold case Detective Ramsey Miller is also trying to solve a twenty-five-year old case involving a kidnapped girl. Ramsey has been on the trail of the kidnapper for a couple years now, and he's closing in, trying to piece together the details. He relies on his friend, Aurora Detective Lucy Hayes. Their relationship is strictly professional. They met not long ago when Lucy was in Comfort Cove, but now they talk almost daily, bouncing clues off each other, trying to gain new insight into their respective cases. When his latest research on the Sanderson kidnapping turns up clues that lead him, surprisingly, to Indiana, he immediately asks Lucy for her help.

Lucy and Ramsey are unknowingly developing a relationship, although right now it's strictly professional and strictly long distance. They've both been invited to their friend, Emma Sanderson's, wedding in Comfort Cove during the Thanksgiving weekend. Lucy would like Ramsey to escort her, but Ramsey doesn't do weddings, nor does he mix professional friendships with off duty dates. Lucy dreams of Ramsey at night; she imagines him holding her, touching her. And Ramsey has had similar dreams about her, but he thinks that Lucy is strictly off limits; she's told him as much—keep their professional relationship just that, professional. She doesn't trust men. How could she, after growing up knowing she was always the "other" daughter. And Ramsey? He tried marriage, and it just did not work; now he has parents he would rather ignore, and criminals to catch. He has no worries, though; Lucy lives in Indiana and he's in Massachusetts. Enough said.

Over twenty-five years ago two children from unrelated families went missing in different states. At the time no one thought these cases were related, but once Ramsey Miller opened up the Sanderson case in Massachusetts, clues began to emerge that were centered in Indiana. THE TRUTH ABOUT COMFORT COVE is the third book in a trilogy about the devastation wreaked on the Sanderson family when Rose Sanderson's daughter, Claire, was abducted, and Rose's fiancé was accused, but never charged (A SON'S TALE, July 2012). Now, in Comfort Cove, Rose's daughter Emma is getting married. Emma grew up much like Lucy, the daughter of a woman who lost her first child to a kidnapper, and her life was pretty much overshadowed by memories of a sister she'll never see again (A DAUGHTER'S STORY, October 2012).

THE TRUTH ABOUT COMFORT COVE is Lucy and Ramsey's story, and the conclusion to this twenty-five-year old mystery. This book stands alone; however, I was a bit confused and felt as if I was missing pertinent details I would have had if I had read the previous books. Even so, the characterization, of course, is spot on! Ms. Quinn never disappoints. This is an emotional story, a character driven novel that has many twists and turns, and a surprise ending that leads me to order the two previous novels.

THE TRUTH ABOUT COMFORT COVE is complex, full of suspense and romantic. It's a great book!

Diana Risso

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