Genre: romantic suspense with a hint of paranormal
The bones said death was comin', and the bones never lied.
While on an early morning patrol in the swamps of Whiskey Bayou, Louisiana wildlife agent Gentry Broussard spots a man leaving the home of voodoo priestess Eva Savoie - a man who bears a startling resemblance to his brother, whom Gentry thought he had killed during a drug raid three years earlier. Shaken, the agent enters Eva's cabin and makes a bloody discovery: the old woman has been brutally murdered.
With no jurisdiction over the case, he's forced to leave the investigation to the local sheriff, until Eva's beautiful heir, Celestine, receives a series of gruesome threats. As Gentry's involvement deepens and more victims turn up, can he untangle the secrets behind Eva's murder and protect Celestine from the same fate? Or will an old family curse finally have its way?
I have been following Susannah Sandlin/Suzanne Johnson for a few years now, and I really enjoy her books. She has some different genres, urban fantasy, paranormal romance and paranormal romantic suspense. I think this is the best one she has written so far. I was totally immersed in the story, and I could not wait to find out how it would all work out.
I liked Celestine from the start, but the best part is the setting. The Louisiana bayou. Something totally foreign to me as an European, but Susannah describes it in such a vivid manner, that I could imagine being there, and seeing what was happening.
The book begins a bit mysterious, with an old lady throwing the bones, and seeing her death in them. And her death sure knocks on her door, in a horrible way. Celestine is completely down on her luck in Nashville, where she is trying to build a career as a singer, when she learns about her great aunt's murder, and her inheritage. Celestine has fond memories about the old lady and spending summers there, until her father found out that she was learning the old ways, and forbade her to go back. And now she has inherited the place. As she was to be evicted from her crappy apartment the next Monday, she decided to go home, at least she would have a roof over her head.
While cleaning up the murder scene herself is not easy, it has to be done before it attracts gators and worse. Then she meets Gentry Broussard, the wild life agent who discovered her aunts body, and he tells her what he found. There is this attraction between them, and neither of them knows how to handle that in the beginning. Gentry has some strange ideas about her being an "entertainer", until he hears her voice…
But the murderer was looking for something, and he is still after it. Can he scare Celestine away from the cabin, or will he have to kill her as well?
I really loved this book, the atmosphere was wonderfully described, and I liked both Celestine and Gentry. Celestine was down on her luck in the worst way, but she never took the easy way out, she did not give in to demands of sleazy men. Her only possession of worth is her guitar. I liked how she became friends with Gentry's female collegue, and there was also the fun part about Gentry's dog. Not the big vicious one most men in the bayou keep as a pet …
Gentry was born and raised in the bayou as well, and after a few years as an officer in the big city, he came back home. He has been a loner ever since, and I liked how Celestine persevered in getting under his skin and in his arms.
Real suspense, and nice love scenes. Great characters and a wonderful setting. Susannah, I want more!
© 2016 Reviews by Aurian