cover image Not What She Seems

Not What She Seems

Yasmin Angoe. Thomas & Mercer, $28.99 (394p) ISBN 978-1-6625-0833-2

Angoe (the Nena Knight series) delivers an impressive standalone centered on research assistant Jacinda “Jac” Brodie, who returns to her Southern hometown to tend to her ailing grandfather. When 28-year-old Jac is passed over for a fellowship, she learns that her boss, bestselling author Conrad Meckleson, sabotaged her chances after she ended their affair. Even worse, Jac discovers that Conrad is preparing to write a true crime book about the death, six years earlier, of her father, South Carolina police chief MJ, who fell off a cliff near the historic Moor Manor while Jac was nearby, making her a prime suspect. The investigation made Jac an outcast in her hometown of Brook Haven, but she returns after her grandfather, a retired cop, suffers a heart attack. Once there, Jac clashes with Faye Arden, a mysterious entrepreneur who’s recently renovated Moor Manor. Though Brook Haven society quickly accepted Faye into its ranks, Jac senses something sinister about her. As Jac digs into the businesswoman’s background, she comes to wonder if Faye is connected to her father’s murder. Angoe grounds the plot’s surprising twists with lovable, fully realized characters. Lisa Unger fans, take note. Agent: Melissa Edwards, Stonesong. (Sept.)