cover image The Island

The Island

Heather Graham, . . Mira, $21.95 (376pp) ISBN 978-0-7783-2283-2

Modern-day piracy, decomposing human remains and a swanky Miami yacht club set the mood for another top-notch thriller from romance icon Graham (Killing Kelly ). During a weekend camp-out on isolated Calliope Key, "compellingly attractive" Beth Anderson and her 14-year-old niece, Amber, stumble on a half-buried human skull that disappears by the time she returns with help. Ben, Beth's brother and Amber's father, suspects the object was merely a conch shell, but it's a safe bet that conch shells don't grow hair. More likely, someone on the island took the skull for reasons of his or her own—like hunky Keith Henson, the enigmatic diver who'd been lurking about at the time of the grisly discovery. Back home in Miami, Beth is stalked and harassed by ominous threats, forcing her to solicit the aid of a couple of cop pals, who set a trap for the culprit at the yacht club's Summer Sizzler festival. Even though the tale falls short as a real knuckle-biter, bestseller Graham doesn't disappoint with the steamy romance between Keith and Beth or the glamorous yacht-club doings. Boat lovers are sure to enjoy the fine attention to detail regarding luxury pleasure craft. (Mar.)