July 1, 2012

The Witness


Elizabeth Fitch's short-lived teenage rebellion began with L'Oreal Pure Black, a pair of scissors, and a fake ID. It ended in blood...

Daughter of a cold, controlling mother and an anonymous donor, studious, obedient Elizabeth finally let loose one night, drinking too much at a nightclub and allowing a strange man's seductive Russian accent to lure her to a house on Lake Shore Drive. The events that followed changed her life forever.

Twelve years later, the woman now known as Abigail Lowery lives alone on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozarks. A freelance programmer, she works at home designing sophisticated security systems. Her own security is supplemented by a fierce dog and an assortment of firearms. She keeps to herself, saying little, revealing nothing.

Unfortunately, that seems to be the quickest way to get attention in a tiny southern town.

The mystery of Abigail Lowery intrigues local police chief Brooks Gleason, on both a personal and professional level. Her sharp, logical mind, her secretive nature, her unromantic viewpoints leave him fascinated but frustrated. He suspects that Abigail needs protection from something, even if he doesn't know what - and that her elaborate defenses hide a story that must be revealed.

Accustomed to two-bit troublemakers, Gleason is about to walk into the sights of very powerful and dangerous men. And Abigail Lowery, who has built a life based on security and self-control, is at risk of losing both.


I don't know how Nora Roberts does it?  Just how does she release two In Death books a year, plus other novels... and where can I get some.  

As with the last few stand alone titles, The Witness revolves around woman with a past.  There are shades of Angel's Fall in this story where our heroine is hiding from her past.  Enter the handsome county Sheriff and voila.  The first part of this story is about how Abigail manages to get herself in trouble.  This section lasts quite a while and is full of great moments.

As with all her novels, you know that our leading lady will be strong, fit, exceptional in some way as well as having attracting our hero like a moth to a flame.  In this regard nothing has changed.  Abigail has a photographic memory, she's got an IQ that's off the charts and she is straight forward about everything.  

Now, Brooks - yes, that's his name - is an all round good guy.  Smart, loving and has some morals.  He pushes his way into Abigail's life (as they all seem to do) and seems to win her over in a matter of a week or two.  It's amazing how they always seem to fall in love in under a month, isnt' it?  But having said that, it's a formula that works well for Ms. Roberts.

The only problems I had was with some unresolved story lines.  Exactly what does happen with her mother, the stone cold Doctor?  And I also feel let down that after all the tension building with the nasty Mr Blake and son, all we get is a casual mention in a paragraph later as we near the end.

Compared to some of her other stand alone's, it's good.  Not as great as say, Black Hills, but still better than Northern Lights or Montana Sky.

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