This month’s reading suggestion: Paranormal or Romantic Suspense - I chose Romantic Suspense
FAITH DEVLIN: A poor, outcast child in Prescott, Louisiana, she'd always adored the town's golden boy from afar. But he called her white trash that sultry Southern night when his rich, respected father disappeared, along with her pretty Mom. Now Faith wanted to hate Gray Rouillard...not to feel a powerful surge of desire. But she couldn't quench her passion, any more than she could hide the truth about the past she had waited so long to unravel. GRAY ROUILLARD: Even when he raised hell, he did it with style. Reckless, charming, and backed by Rouillard money, Gray controlled the town of Prescott -- and Devlin was a name he never wanted to hear again. But when he gazed at Faith Devlin, all he saw was a swirl of tangled sheets and her silken flesh beneath him. To care for her was impossible, unthinkable...because Gray Rouillard planned to use all his power to ruin her.
In Prescott, Louisiana the Devlin family is considered trash. The father drinks as do the two oldest sons. The oldest daughter, though not that old is sleeps with just about anyone with 2 legs and the mother, Renee, though the mistress of the richest man in the area, Guy Rouillard, also sleeps around. The youngest daughter, Faith, keeps her nose clean, goes to school, takes care of her family and her little brother who has Down’s Syndrome. It doesn’t matter that Faith isn’t like the rest, she’s a Devlin so therefore is lumped in with all the rest.
Faith, though just 14 years old, has a huge crush on Gray Rouillard. He’s 8 years older but she doesn’t care she’s been half in love with him for forever and despite his hatred of her family has always treated her decently.
One night Renee Devlin and Guy Rouillard disappear. Everyone is town assumes that they have run off together though neither family can understand why – they each had families as well as non-stop access to each other – why would they head out of town? Despite the confusion the oldest Rouillard child, Gray, just 22 years old, kicks the Devlin family out of their home (which is on Rouillard land and they don’t pay rent) and then has the Sheriff department escort them out of town.
Now it’s twelve years later and Faith Devlin, though always traumatized by the night they were kicked out, has returned to her hometown. Despite the crappy way she was treated by all the townsfolk she feels like Prescott is where she belongs. She had a rough life but she had made something of herself and she’s not going to let the prejudices of those people bring her down. She’s also very anxious/excited to see Gray because she’s really never stopped loving him, even after that night.
Gray wants his family taken care of. They are so dysfunctional it’s ridiculous but he wants no more gossip about his father and Renee Devlin to read his mother and start upsetting her once again. He tries to get rid of Faith to make his family happy but his heart’s just not in it. His is peeved that Faith is snooping around town and asking questions about his father. He’s not sure what her angle is but he wants her to stop.
Faith suspects that more than the obvious happened the night her mother left town and she’s determined to discover the truth even after her life is threatened.
This was a really good book. I just had to start out by saying that. It wasn’t at all what I expected when I started reading, it was better.
First I had to completely admire Faith’s hutzpuh in returning to Prescott. I can’t say that after being treated so badly by everyone around that I would have had the fortitude to return. But not only did she return she didn’t let anyone make her feel inferior. She knew she wasn’t and she didn’t let them get her down. She was really quite smart in figuring everything out and though I think she was a bit crazy at time to do the things she did I understood her determination.
Gray was another matter. I think I had a love/hate relationship with that man. I liked the fact that he wanted to protect his family but not the rude way he went about it. I hated the way he treated Faith but then if he thought he’d hurt her he would immediately turn to a big softy. He was a very different kind of romance hero, that’s for sure.
Though I had the suspense part of it and the bad guy figured out at quite an early stage I loved reading about the journey that was made in order to get us to the reveal. Howard has a true gift when it comes to the ins and outs of a mystery.
Overall a very good book and one I definitely recommend reading.