cover image The Secret She Keeps

The Secret She Keeps

Helenkay Dimon. Avon, $7.99 mass market (384p) ISBN 978-0-06-289279-9

The suspenseful second romance in Dimon’s Whitaker Island series (after Her Other Secret) returns readers to the idyllic setting while introducing new threats. Reclusive Maddie Rhine has isolated herself on Whitaker Island for the past two years, hiding from her dark past. But just as she’s finally ready to reclaim her life and face the world, threatening notes start showing up on her porch, making her rethink her decision. When vacationer Connor Rye takes up residency in his family’s empty cabin near Maddie’s house, paranoid Maddie mistakes him for an intruder and attacks him, leaving him with a massive headache and a bruised ego. Connor came to Whitaker Island to grieve his sister in solitude, but when Maddie visits him in the hospital to apologize, he’s instantly attracted to her and eager to protect her from whatever’s made her so skittish. The discovery of a dead body amps up the danger as Maddie’s past finally catches up with her. The islanders are just as nosey, loyal, and quirky as ever, adding local flavor and comic relief to this intense story. Readers who enjoyed the prior book won’t be disappointed. Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary. (Jan.)