His search is now ambiguous. Roarke has a connection with Cara, and having bent the rules several times on her behalf, is now unsure of his motives. He doesn’t know if wants to prosecute or protect her. Since he has witnessed, first-hand just how lethal she is he can only conclude that he is trying to protect her from the law.
It’s a knot of moral, ethical, and emotional dilemmas. At the same time Cara has at least as much on her plate, from the other side of the story, including surviving being shot, and her conflicted feelings for Roarke. This sounds like a tangled knot of storylines, but in the assured hands of Ms. Sokoloff, it goes down smooth. All of these issues are there, but they never slow down the narrative drive or overwhelm the plot.
What a plot, too. Basically, Roarke and his team,(each one more fully realized and multi-dimensional), decide to draw Cara out into the open by a fake investigation of a new killing by the Reaper, the serial killer whom decades before ruined killed Cara’s family, ruined her life, terrorized California and set Roarke on his chosen path. However in their ruse the team discovers evidence that the Reaper really may be alive and killing again. Roarke’s superiors’ aren’t so sure, so now his team must prove that the Reaper is still a threat. Then they must stop him, as well as deal with Cara. Extra tension is provided by the fact that the Reaper works on a lunar cycle, and the clock is ticking.
In contrast to all of this chaos is Cara’s part of the story. Her sections are often stripped-down, lean and menacing, and filled with dream-like logic. That is dream-like, not dreamy. Her story is told in primary colors, with primal emotions. It is also often frightening, and heart-breakingly sad. Despite her calm competence and exceptional skills at dishing out violence, she has the skills learned by a desperate person pushed into a corner. Cara deals out vengeance to those that deserve it; it is what she is, but I don’t think that she enjoys it for a minute.
The rest of the story plays out beautifully, as Roarke and the team race the clock trying to trap both the Reaper and Cara. The storylines intertwine in ingenious ways: at one point Roarke is bait for Cara, and a fake Cara is bait for the Reaper. There is more, and I wish that I could spill it, if only to further impress you with Ms. Sokoloff’s skills. My ethics as a reviewer forbid this, however, no matter how great the temptation, so you just have to go out and get the book instead. The good news is that the next book in the series, Cold Moon, is right around the corner, so you can watch me walk the tightrope yet again.
Other books by Alexandra Sokoloff