cover image One Cursed Rose

One Cursed Rose

Rebecca Zanetti. Kensington, $17.95 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-1-4967-4835-5

Bestseller Zanetti (You Can Run) sizzles in this dark, fantasy-tinged retelling of “Beauty and the Beast,” set in a world where power is derived from gemstones. Beautiful social media heiress Alana Beaumont likes to play the ditz online, but privately she’s smart as a whip and passionate about social justice. Thorn Beathach is the craggy and somewhat ruthless loner at the helm of another of the four social media empires, which are all run via a connection to a specific jewel. Thorn is single-minded in his desire for Alana, whose father keeps her under lock and key following her brother’s death in a car accident. After an assassination attempt in a crowded restaurant, Thorn whisks Alana to his remote castle, where an unlikely romance builds between them. When Alana’s father compels Thorn to return her for a large garnet he needs to stay alive, Alana is livid. But as the body count rises and villains are unmasked, Alana learns that Thorn’s precautions are what’s keeping them both alive. Zanetti is a master of red herrings, keeping readers guessing as to who’s behind the violence until the very end. Her characters elicit fierce loyalty from the first page, and her plotting is spot-on. Fans of dark romance won’t be able to resist this. (July)