cover image Snow in September

Snow in September

Rachel Lee, Jenny Lee. Mira Books, $5.99 (384pp) ISBN 978-1-55166-554-2

The first of a trilogy, this novel examines the tragic repercussions of secrets and guilt on a family. When widow Meg Williams's 14-year-old daughter, Allie, runs away, the distraught mother turns to the man who had been her husband's best friend, Sheriff Earl Sanders. Earl leads an exhaustive search through the treacherous, snowy wilderness of Whisper Creek, Colo., and discovers Allie at the bottom of a gorge, injured but alive. Was Allie's fall an accident--or an attempt at suicide? While trying to unravel the mystery behind her daughter's actions, Meg confronts the ugly truth about her father's death and her mother's enormous bitterness. She seeks refuge from her broken world with Earl, but their love is complicated by her unresolved past. Lee (Nighthawk) crafts a heartrending saga about a family riddled with serious communication problems. The spark between the hero and heroine is dim; instead the plot focuses on the angst and deathly silence in the Williamses' home. A subplot about a teen boy who finally finds the courage to accuse his father of abuse adds extra emotion to this dramatic tale. (Apr.)