Once Burned

Book Length: Plus Novel

You never forget your first love. And if he happens to have married your sister a week after taking your virginity, and been accused of his wife’s murder shortly after, well, you really can’t forget him. Even if you desperately want to…
Six years have passed since Cassie hightailed it out of her hometown. Taking one blow after another, she just couldn’t be there anymore. The man she loved married her sister, and she didn’t understand why. And she wasn’t going to wait and find out. Always feeling like an outsider in her own family, this was the last straw. Now the last of her family has died, and she has no choice but to go back and settle her mother’s estate. She’ll just be in and out, she never has to see Griffin. Right?
Leaning on the side of Cassie’s car as she comes out of the grocery store, Griffin is more determined than ever that he will get her back. He loves her. He’s always loved her. And he’s waited. There’s a lot she doesn’t know about what forced him to betray her six years ago, and this is his last bid chance at happiness. 
A lot goes on in small towns. But this small town is a smoking den of inequity. The author did a fabulous job of portraying small town life and I should know, I live in a small town. The author is not exaggerating. People really are that noisy and intrusive. On reflection what I most enjoyed about this story is that there was no big deep secret that wrenches the newly reunited lovers apart. These two, once they find each other again, are a unit and nothing will separate them. 
Between the reconciliation, which was steamy, and then the mystery surrounding her sister’s murder and her father’s suicide, this was an attention-holding mystery. Even better, I never had a clue “whodunit” and was pleasantly surprised at the unexpected conclusion. 

Book Blurb for Once Burned

One hot summer Cassie Fitzgerald gave her virginity and her heart to Griffin Hunter. When he married her sister Diane, Cassie fled Stoneham and for six years nothing could make her return. Not her sister’s murder, for which Griffin was and continues to be the only suspect. Not her father’s suicide, which the police chief wants to sweep under the rug. But now her mother is dead and she has legal obligations she can’t avoid. Nor, it seems, can she avoid Griffin, who wants her more than ever.
Will Cassie be able to control her own hot need for this man or will she be pulled back into the same sensual vortex? Can she uncover the secret Stoneham’s hiding, the riddle of Diane’s murder, and the answer to her relationship with Griff, without destroying herself in the process?
Publisher Note: Previously published elsewhere under the title Playing With Fire.


Night Owl Reviews Nov, 2008 4.00