HEART SECRET – Robin D. Owens
A Celta Novel
Druida City – 421 Years After Colonization
Private investigator Garrett Primross lives in the past. His horrific memories of the deaths of his childhood sweetheart, her baby, and others of the virulent Iasc disease cannot be erased from his memory. As the lone survivor of the illness, Garrett feels guilt and anger to the point that he won't even acknowledge his HeartMate, Artemisia Panax. But when he is called upon to donate his blood to save the life of a young victim of Iasc, and to have further tests performed to discover why he survived, Garrett reluctantly agrees, even if it means spending hours under the care of Artemisia.
SecondLevel Healer Artemisia Mugwort Panax has her own memories to try and forget. Years before, her family was disgraced when they were wrongly linked to the brutal murders committed by the Black Magic Cult. Now they reside secretly in the original Residence started by the first colonists – FirstGrove, BalmHeal Estate, where only those in desperate need of help are given entry. There are only rumors in Druida that it exists. Artemisia uses Panax as her family name in order to quiet those who hold the Mugworts in contempt. But as a SecondLevel Healer, she must abide by the order of her seniors, particularly Ura Heather, who seems to despise Artemisia. So Artemisia is not surprised to be assigned the job of staying by Garrett Primross's side while the Iasc disease is reintroduced into his system in order to discover how his body combated it. She is obviously expendable to Ura Heather.
The experiment is not easy on either Garrett or Artemisia, especially since Primross obviously doesn't like her. She is unaware why. But during the event, she does discover why he feels such guilt, and how much he loved his former girlfriend. After he recovers and the two are on their way to report their results, they come upon the body of a man that turns out to be the last of the Black Magic Cultists. Artemisia is terrified that her family will again be drawn into the fray, especially when she smells the incense that was detected at the scene of the cult's killings. Finding the killer of the cultist forces Garrett and Artemisia to work together again.
HEART SECRET continues the wonderful world of the planet Celta and her magical inhabitants. Garrett's personal affiliation with feral cats, his acceptance of a Fam (Familiar) kitten, and his selfless giving during the Iasc testing, show his gentle side, although his anger is all that Artemisia sees at first. With the Fam's ability to talk telepathically with humans, and people able to teleport themselves from one place to another, Celta is, indeed, a unique planet. The poignant pasts of both Garrett and Artemisia gradually come to the surface in their relationship. Can Garrett put the past behind him and accept his HeartMate? And what of the cultist's killer? Who is it, and how much danger are Garrett and Artemisia in as they close in on them?
Once again I was transported to the incredible world of Celta and her amazing citizens. HEART SECRET gathers many of the previous books' characters together as they all hope to cure a sickness and find a killer. Another excellent novel by Robin D. Owens, who continues to delight all who love paranormal romances. If you haven't already, do go to http://www.robindowens.com/home.htm to start reading this fabulous series.