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(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

Ariel Gold’s debut as an on-air news personality brings her recognition, and it brings Jack Spurling back into her life. Jack does not know that Ariel has amnesia, so he is miffed that she does not remember him. Ariel trusts Jack before she finds out his past: he was tried for killing his wife, but the trial ended with a hung jury.

Jack tells Ariel things about their past: she believed in him during his trial, and she shared some very personal information with him. Ariel wants to know exactly what she told him, but she cannot ask without revealing her amnesia.

Ariel’s long-time friend and current boyfriend, Henry, is worried about Ariel’s interest in Jack. She tells him it is professional—Jack’s story will be great on the news show—but Henry suspects that it might be something more. Ariel is determined to find out who killed Jack’s wife. It is the only way he can be free of the danger of a second trial. It will eliminate Ariel’s doubts about Jack. And it will remove Henry’s most vehement objection to Ariel spending time with Jack.

Some details of Jack’s past make Ariel uncomfortable, yet she is more and more attracted to him. While Henry is steady and reliable, Jack is exciting and possibly dangerous. When Ariel’s house is vandalized she refuses to consider it might have something to do with Jack. She guesses it is an irate subject of one of her news shows. But her guess is wrong.

Judy Mercer tells a story that keeps readers on edge, with each revelation telling more of the story and creating more questions at the same time. It is a hard book to put down.