Author: Nora Roberts
Publisher: Silhouette Books (Harlequin)
Copyright: 2009 (two-in-one paperback)
Devin is the sheriff in Antietam, devoted to protecting his town and especially Cassie Dolin, who turned to him for help in getting out of her abusive marriage. But Devin has been in love with Cassie ever since they were children and wants to be more than just the sheriff to her. Cassie, though, is still fighting to find herself and be her own person, and her two children are just learning how to be normal children. With love and persistence, Devin protects Cassie and teaches her to trust herself and her heart.
Playboy Shane has closed himself off to the supernatural. But when his sister-in-law's college friend, Dr. Rebecca Knight, comes to Antietam with the specific purpose of studying the supernatural activity, Shane has to confront more than just ghosts. Rebecca is his breath of fresh air, forcing Shane to rethink his philosophies on life as he finds himself falling deeper and deeper in love. For Rebecca, what started out as an experiment of rebellion turns quickly into more than she could ever have dreamed of.
One of the (many!) things I love about Nora Roberts books is the completion of the characters. Their stories don't start when the two protagonists meet, and they don't end when they fall in love and get married. The little prologues included in both of these stories gives the guys a childhood, but even without the prologues, the stories are full of events and impressions left from earlier in life, for both the guys and the girls. It rounds out the whole story and makes it so much more compelling. And the benefit of having a series like this, as with so many of Nora Roberts's series, is that by the time Shane's story is ready to be told, Devin and Cassie already have a child! It's really great to follow the characters just a little further than the basic love story.
Another great thing about some of Nora's books is the integration of the supernatural. She makes it so natural for ghosts to be around, for people and relationships to be tied to events of the past. It adds another dimension, to sort of be following two stories at once.
And, of course, what goes without saying - the writing is incredible! For someone just wanting a good read, these stories draw you in and make you live the story along with the characters. At the same time, for someone with an appreciation for language, these books are so rich that I had to stop every so often and reread some passages simply to savor the absolute brilliance of language use!
If you've ever read a Nora Roberts book, you know why I'm so enthusiastic about them. If you haven't - what are you waiting for?