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LADY GABRIELLA
DONETTE SMITH
ISBN#: 9780979988417
July 2008
Blu Phier
202 South Street,Marshall, Texas 75670
Trade Paperback
$13.99
170 Pages
Romantic Suspense/Mystery
Rating: 4 Cups

Nicole Valentine is a journalist. Ten years ago she was turned out of her home by her abusive mother while her father did nothing to defend her. She never understood or forgave him.

Bay Dalton is a former police detective turned private eye. He was burned badly by a past romance and is reluctant to trust any woman other than his partner and childhood best friend.

When Nicole’s father died, he left his fortune to charity, his house and furniture to his wife, and an heirloom necklace to his estranged daughter. Nicole returns to Texas to find closure, but instead finds secrets, lies, hostility, and murder. No one, not even herself is what they seem. Detective Dalton is the biggest puzzle of them all, loving her one minute, but so ready to believe the worst of her the next. Hopefully, he can put aside his prejudices long enough to keep her alive.

This mystery has so many twists and turns that it is difficult to separate the good guys from the bad guys. The womanizing detective is an unlikely hero, but shows real depth when it counts. I felt sorry for Nicole, who was the victim from beginning to end. She is a well drawn character with strong emotions. The other characters are pretty colorful at times, especially Nicole’s greedy and jealous mother. The rocky romance between the two main characters is often colored by Bay’s past and he repeatedly hurts Nicole, making him less than sympathetic for most of the book, but even a playboy like him can fall hard for a character as strong and beautiful as Nicole Valentine. I loved it when all of the secrets came out; there were some real doozies.

Maura
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books

 

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