After five patient years, Abigail Wyatt's sisterly care is finally paying off: her younger brother, Derek, is abandoning his self-destructive lifestyle and seeking his parents' forgiveness, thus ending the painful estrangement that wounded the whole family. But just as the pieces are falling into place for the prodigal's return, a woman named Karen Brodie is murdered in a local park, and police name Derek as the prime suspect. Rather than standing firm and cemeting the positive changes in his life, Derek succumbs to his cynical fears and runs from the law, leaving Abigail with her hands tied. Literally. Derek's raw panic convinces everyone that he's the killer, everyone except Abigail, who doggedly maintains her brother's innocence. With the help of Kyle, a charismatic new friend she might be falling for, Abigail digs deep into Karen Brodie's troubled past in hopes of clearing Derek's name. But as she uncovers a sinister plot of greed, envy, and vengeance, this loyal sister must face the painful truth that things, and people, are not always as they seem.
Stephanie Black is awesome. She does a great job of building suspense and characters. I was almost sure who the bad guy was then Stephanie added a little twist and threw me off course.
V: Tense moments
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"Hey, Abigail. There's a guy here who wants to see you."
Abigail looked up from the purchase order displayed on her computer scree. "Tell him unless he's six-foot-four, has biceps to die for, and is heir to the throne, I'm not interested."
Melissa Barry laughed, eyes sparkling behind retro cat0eye glasses. "His arms are pretty big. It taht enough? He says he has an important business deal going with you."
"A business deal?"
"Says he's an artist."
Wonderful. Chase McCoy. She might as well deal with him now. "Fine, send him on back."
Melissa disappeared. A moment later, Chase strode through the open door of the office. "Good to see you, Abby."
Abigail concealed her irritation. The nickname seemed over familiar coming from a man who barely knew her. "Hello, Chase."
Chase shrugged out of his coat. he was dressed in a striped Oxford shirt and Dockers. He looked--Abigail hoped--like he was on his lunch hour and was due back a the office very soon. "Nice store," he said. "Has that country-ish, hometown appeal."
Chase settled in the chair facing her desk. "So have you had a chance to look at my paintings?"
"Yes." She stood and took the binder from where she'd stowed it on the top of the filing cabinet. "Your work is very unique, and I appreciate your thinking of our store. But as I said,I don't usually take things on consignment, and--"
"You can make an exception. You're the boss lady, right?"